Category Archives: Hero’s Journey

Week 24 – Joy, Gratitude and Other Thoughts

Mahalo from the man in the mirror

Every day is time to look that guy in the face and be honest with him. Mostly we’re buds but there are days he tells me to get my butt in gear – lovingly of course. He and I are in a long-term relationship so we try to be kind and considerate to each other while being accountable. We’re both thankful for the experience and looking forward to our future together.

What did I learn from going through the Master Key Experience? I learned That I have a lot to learn but this is a great start to the journey. I learned the value of Self-mastery over the expectation that some guru holds all the secrets. Some of the value tidbits to whet your appetite

Being the observer

Avoiding Rejecting negativity

Knowing my primary purpose

Focusing on what’s important

Doing my best

 

Funny things I learned about Mark Januszewski

I identify with Mark J more than I thought I would…which is part of his approach.

He’s a very bright guy while also an “everyman”. He teaches common sense from the perspective of someone with extensive education and experience.

He and I both were fortunate enough to have the existential, life-defining experience of being single dads bringing up children. Nothing is ever the same afterward.

We both love the Pittsburgh Steelers (or did I remember this wrong?)

We both love to apply a little bit of the needle now and then.

We both  were blessed to sell  photocopiers – Mark in the 1970s and me in the 1980s. It seems we had similar teachers from the stories he tells.

 

Love the teachers

Gurus love wisdom but they teach it like they’re the first one to think of these things. In truth there have been many teachers, philosophers and sages through they years who imparted these wise thoughts. Just goes to show you that gurus aren’t always the font of all wisdom. Mark has brought us Emerson, Emmet Fox, Haanel, John Wooden, Og Mandino among others. Pretty good faculty if you ask me.

 

A big Mahalo!

My heartfelt thanks goes to Mark J, T.F. Davene, Trish, Derek, Heather, Andrea, Dayna, my guide Justin Leader  and your staff for pushing, pulling, cajoling and guiding me through this experience. It was fun, difficult, joyful, demanding, energizing and exhausting at various times. I would certainly do it again and fully expect to. There’s no way I can truly express my gratitude other to say, Mahalo! I have come a long way and also realize I have much to learn.

I am whole, perfect, strong, powerful, loving, harmonious and happy.

 

Week 19 – Appearances are Deceptive

Are appearances really deceptive? Aren’t appearances in the eye of the beholder? If you think about it our perspective can be fairly limited. Isn’t that why “man” thought the earth was flat and that the sun revolved around the earth? Turns out we were wrong, Huh? What else could we be wrong about?

THE CATHEDRAL 020815

Don’t we use the same limited perspective in our daily lives. We have mountains where there used to be bodies of water and rivers that change course even though we think of all these things as being solid, long-established landmarks. Throughout time cities and civilizations disappear, earthquakes, floods tornadoes, etc… change our landscape. Maybe they’re not as permanent as we assume.

What would happen if we open up our horizons and consider the hugeness, the grandeur, and state of flux of our surroundings, of our world,  our galaxy, our universe? Would we still behave the same?

When I think of the first time I recall someone asking me what I want in life I just remember saying “More!” I wasn’t sure what I wanted at all. I just knew I wanted more. Like most of us I was convinced happiness would coming from having more – more money, more free time, more possessions, more vacations, more friends, more cars, etc… I don’t know where I learned that but I don’t think I was alone.  Obviously “more” isn’t the key to happiness but even if it were, once we get the “more” we thought would make us happy, then we move the goal posts. All the while chasing even more and then more than that. How’s that working out? Hmmm…

It’s taken me a while but I’ve decided to look inside in my search for happiness. It turns out it’s been there all along and it’s full of gratitude, thankfulness, strength, kindness, imagination, love, power and harmony. An..oh yeah, everything else is temporary, deceptive, disappointing and elusive.

I am whole, perfect, strong, powerful, harmonious and happy

Week 18 – What Would You Do Next?

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Here’s a mind bending question put to members of the Master Key Experience this week.

What would the person I intend to become do next?

Think about that for a second…Huge question, right?

First, think about the person you intend to become – confident, smart, talented, accomplished, likeable, caring, honest, funny, considerate…and whatever other attributes you intend to become. Then think about all the decisions you encounter on a daily basis. What if that person were making each of those decisions. Wouldn’t the future, better you, make better decisions? Of course they would! So why not start now?

If you use your imagination it gets to be a little bit fun. For example I imagine different versions of my future me will come along in 5 minutes, an hour, a day, a year and ten years from now respectively. I imagine growing levels of happiness, peace, success and fulfillment along the way. I have to humbly admit the person I intend to become is pretty awesome!

imagination_einstein

My future self is also a fun guy who takes life seriously but doesn’t take himself too seriously. He believes in God but also believes God has a sense of humor. In fact he depends on that.

He has his personal priority needs in order. In other words he’s really centered on what’s important in his life. He knows his definite major purpose and his actions go to accomplish that purpose.

I’m not always 100% sure what that person would do next but when I stop to consider the question in a moment of decision, that decision is forever affected… and so am I. Can you imagine the cumulative effect of upgrading hundreds, if not thousands of decisions daily? By the way, have you read The Slight Edge by Jeff Olson? If not, you should.

I can’t wait to meet this person I intend to become…but I know I will.

I also invite you to ask yourself the question above and to check out the Master Key Experience. It truly is a life-changing and life affirming experience which I highly recommend. If you have any questions just let me know.

I am whole, perfect, strong, powerful, loving, harmonious and happy

Week 17 HJ – Hero’s Journey Week

Some random thoughts on the journey…

Sometimes I have to be reminded I’m the hero in my own journey. I think it’s because some of us have never thought of ourselves as heroic…until now. There’s a real courage in showing up every day and doing your best – your absolute best, and then coming back and doing that again the next day, and the next – even when you falter. Courage.

I can’t express how thankful I am to have stumbled upon the Master Key Experience. It has reawakened an enthusiasm I really haven’t fully felt in quite a while. It has charged my imagination with possibility, even the inspiration to pursue dreams long forgotten or never completely developed.

I’m also thankful for the associations I’ve built on the journey. It’s really great how people of a like mind can encourage, support and understand each other. Shouldn’t our daily lives be like this? I don’t see why not. There’s also a real camaraderie. Even though we haven’t met in person we’re sharing an experience none of us will forget.

Of course we’re each on our own hero’s journey…or at least we should be. If not then what are we doing? leading our dull, dreary, disappointing lives of quiet desperation? Anyone who ventured into the Master Key Experience discovered pretty soon that the train would be leaving the station. Those not willing to step on board and reach for a hand up would be lovingly left at the station until the next departure.

There are plenty of real obstacles in life. Why create or imagine more? Some of us just need to give ourselves permission to succeed…at whatever the objective is, whether that’s completing today’s to-do list or climbing a mountain. Permission granted!

I just can’t imagine the ripples but I try. The thought of all the possibilities sometimes really inspires me. What if some day I open the door for a woman with children in tow and her son takes that example and turns it into something special? What if that gift card I left at Tim Horton’s brightens someone’s day? What if that phone call cheered someone up? There’s really no what if about it. The ripples are real. We just can’t predict how far they’ll go. So be kind, be grateful, call a friend. It will help you too.

Mahalo!

I am whole, perfect, strong, powerful, loving harmonious and happy.

 

Week 17 – Permission You Say?

approval

Here’s an idea! Let’s allow ourselves the benefit of our hard work and effort. Let’s stop sabatoging ourselves.

Did you ever wonder why some seem to take the same actions, say the same things, read the same books as others’ and then watch them turn it into a success while some “spin their wheels”?

Psychologically we need to give ourselves permission to succeed, whatever that means to that person. It’s OK to be more successful than your siblings, your parents or someone you look up to. It’s even OK to achieve more than you even planned or expected. It’s OK to give yourself permission. Your creator already has.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying everyone has to be a billionaire or an astronaut to be a success. Each individual’s definition of success is up to them and that’s exactly the point. Whether their desire is improved relationships, family, acknowledgement, service to others, financial rewards or something else the definition of success is up to each of us.

Somehow some of us sabotage ourselves, can’t get over the hump, and always seem on the brink of our own success. Crazy? Maybe not. Maybe all we have to do it allow ourselves the success that we’ve hesitated to achieve and then claim it. If others seem to access it and achieve it what’s stopping us? Usually the biggest obstacle is ourselves and we know it, don’t we?

I think many of us know what’s happening on some level. I know I’ve heard people say, “If I could just get out of my own way” Or “I can’t seem to put it together”. Just when they’re on the verge of the happiness and success they dream of, somehow they blow it; somehow something doesn’t quite go right.

At points in the past I’ve been one of these people. Not anymore! I have permission – from my creator and myself. I claim it. You claim yours!

I’m not saying it’s easy. If it were, everyone would do it. I’m saying it’s worth doing. What we focus on grows. If we focus on our failures, what we lack or how the pretty girl doesn’t like us, that’s what will grow. Focus on successes, gratitude for all the abundance we’re blessed with and all who love us.

Give yourself permission. Claim it. Focus.

I am whole, perfect, strong, powerful, loving, harmonious and happy.

Mahalo!

Week 15 – Insight and Insights

Insight

-I love what Haanel says in lesson 15 of the Master Key about Insight;

  • It must be exercised,
  • It enables us to be prepared for the obstacles which we shall meet, and
  • It’s absolutely essential for the development of any great achievement

As my insight needs exercised, here are some insights of mine.

-I’m always a bit bemused at how profoundly the simplest common sense idea strikes me. I’m a reasonably intelligent human being. Why does, “Keep the main thing, the main thing.” sound different to me when I hear it from Mark Januszewski? Yet it does and it is. I now hear it in my brain and hear myself saying it to others. Hmmmm… Keep them coming Mark!

-It’s Week 15 of this Master Key Experience and I don’t know where the time has gone. Although I’ve developed new habits and reduced/eliminated others, I still spend a fair amount of my time doing the tasks and working to improve. It seems the more I learn, the more I want to learn.

Insight 2

-There was a time when I was up to date on all current events, the local police blotter, the political landscape, every tiny detail of what my co-workers were assigned to and many other “very important” things that were going on around me. You see I’m kind of an information hound. Through the changes brought on by the Master Key Experience I’ve learned to focus on the things that bring be closer to my Definite Major Purpose

-Happily, the changes in me are evident to me even though my old habits pop up from time-to-time. Even though I’m still working on some I still see progress. I can see that this will now be a lifelong process for me. It’s embedded into everything I do.

-I’ve become much more observant of what happens around me, my reactions, my thoughts. and my attitudes. Because of that my “gatekeeper” has become highly vigilant and rejects poisonous thoughts at the entrance. Any that linger there are dealt with using the law of substitution. I other words, a positive, pleasant or uplifting thought is substituted right away as we can’t think of two things at once.

-I’ve come a long way and have a long way to go. I admire how far my fellow travelers have come. They’ve inspired me and befriended me. There’s no doubt I’m better for the experience and I get better every day. Thank you!

-I’m thankful for all who’ve crossed my path

I am whole, perfect, strong, powerful, loving, harmonious and happy.

Week 14 – Our Thoughts of Inspiration and October Sky

October Sky – I loved this movie and watched it with my eight and eleven year olds. I really wanted them to see an example of real inspiration, persistence and commitment. This true story is about a student in a West Virginia coal town during the 1950s. His teacher sparks his imagination with thoughts of rockets and winning a science competition. Of course he meets resistance at every turn from other students, his father and even his principal. It seems he and his team were the only ones not entirely convinced they were predestined for the coal mines. Little did others know of their determination. It was a real heroes’ journey ala Joseph Campbell. Several of the characters were at different points in their own hero’s journey and persevered nonetheless. The outcomes were inspiring – especially since it’s a true story. It’s not a “perfect” story where everyone lives happily ever after as no one is exempt from the trials and tribulations of life. But it is an inspiring story of vision, determination and perseverance – all brought about by a thought.

It also demonstrated to me again that thoughts come first. Our ideas create our reality. Everything  begins with a thought and always has. From the Empire State Building to the great wall of China, each started with a thought, with a concept. Even third grade math is a concept that needs to be mastered and the connecting thread is our thoughts.

Recently I had a talk with my eight year old about how our thoughts can help us or hurt us. She was convinced at the ripe old age of eight that she’s just no good at math. The conversation was nothing revolutionary – just a father helping his daughter over a rough patch. I explained that if she thinks she’s bad at math, she will be and if she thinks she doesn’t have friends, she won’t have any. It was an “aha” moment for her and it helped me too. There’s nothing like the way an eight year old looks at dad when they realize he’s their biggest supporter. Then the coaching and practice began. She won’t always be eight but I don’t think either of us will forget that for a while.  I can’t wait to watch her hero’s journey. It’s going to be special.

It’s heartening to see the difference in her confidence as she’s realized she can be as good as she wants to be. It’s reinforces a really important lesson for me too. I too can be as good as I want to be…and I want to be great!

I’m whole, perfect, strong, powerful, loving, harmonious and happy.