I still can’t believe it.   It kinda snuck up on me.  And yet it’s true.  I’m turning 50 this July.

When I look back at events that took place when I was, say, 25 or 30, it seems like they happened only a couple of years ago.   Then, when we go to our favorite restaurant and see the 25 year old waiter who waits on us often, I see that 25 years is enough for some one like this young man standing in front of me to grow up.  Shocking!

“Well,” I tell myself, “it’s time to sit down and take a breath.”

It’s been quite a ride, this past half-century,  and there is much more to muse about. And over the next few weeks,  I’ll want to tell you more about what this major life event is meaning for me as well as some other stuff I want to tell you about.

I’m reminded of my yogic studies and how they’re always leading you into “the moment of now” through the asana or postures.   I’ve come to think that a lifetime isn’t really a series of memories, good or bad, but rather a series of moments.  Perhaps the only difference one moment has from the other is the intention you bring to it.  I’m certainly not perfect at it, but I do try to bring as much joy to each moment as I can.  That to me is a spiritual practice.

I’ll write more later, but while I’m thinking about it, let

me invite you to my party:

My Birthday Party Website

More later,

Blessings,

Donny

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Donny and I had the privilege recently to meet the Australian filmmaker, Jacqueline Bignell, who is creating a movie called “The Difference.” She’s going out to meet and gather people around to world to share their wisdom about making a difference.  She is such a model of what we believe in.  Without telling her story for her I’ll just say she left what she was doing to follow her guidance.  The impact she will have will be enormous.

Also, recently we had the privilege to hear a brother, Aidan, speak at our church about being in Chile during the recent earthquake.  His talk was entitled “lo importante” which is the Spanish for “what’s important.”  Both these people inspired us by their simple questions:  “how do you make a difference” and “what is truly important?” These questions are the essence of why Donny and I are putting on these two We Are The Ones Events in LA and later in Newark. Grass root movements like these that come from the heart can change the world.  By coming back to what difference you want to make and what is important to you will guide your heart to your passion.

What we desire passionately will manifest.  So just how passionate are you about your business?  Is your passion being expressed through your business?

One of the keys to success we speak of in our work at The Missing Thread is “being your own authority.” If we are following others advice for our lives and business when it is not fully congruent with us, there is an internal conflict.  The Universe then simply mirrors that back to us with feelings indicating that missing us something.  Getting clear about your passion requires that you own your desires and allow them to activate your decisions.  Then, as you become clear, you gather mentors, colleagues and team around you that see your passion.

I heard a business analyst speak about businesses that thrived during the Great Depression.  One external thing most of them had in common was they kept advertising.  They stayed visible.  When you own your passion and let it become visible you have some of both the internal and external ingredients for success.

When I muse on Martin Luther King Jr, Gandhi, St Teresa of Avila, Archbishop Oscar Romero or even Oprah there are many characteristics that contributed to their being leaders of a movement.  Each of them were true to their passion and were willing to be visible.  Every grass root movement that comes from the heart has the potential to change the world.

Seeing yourself as part of a movement of change, being guided by what’s important, bringing your passion and being willing to be seen are the ways we are going to make a difference.  Grass root movements from the heart will change the world.

A fun and simple call to action.  If you see yourself as an entrepreneur, healer or change, agent do this. Take a piece of paper/poster board and with bold markers spell out We Are The Ones.  Take a picture of yourself and post it on Facebook or some viral media. Tag each other pics starting a movement of faces contributing to being the Difference.  Have fun with it and ask others to do the same.

Just like Jacqueline creating The Difference or Jeremy Gilley creating a World Peace Day we can be counted together NOW.  Put your pictures up NOW.

MAKE A DIFFERENCE:  Grass root movements that come from the heart change the world.

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As I sit here in the afterglow of our “We Are The Ones” event this past weekend in Los Angeles, I am impressed by the dedication of the people who participated in our class.  All were spiritual people—healers, change agents and entrepreneurs—who were intent on making a difference in their own lives and well as the lives of others.

The main lesson of our time together and the main question we asked each other was “How can we work together?”  The question might strike you as just a variation of old-fashioned networking, but what I’m talking about has a new twist.  The difference is the point of view.  Many times when we network, we’re trying to fulfill a need of ours, usually around love or security.  We want something; we try to get it from someone else.  However, in the new world we are ushering in, our motivation is rather “what can I offer, what can you offer so that we all can have more, be more in service together to the world?”

This is a necessary question, because the reality is that we can’t be, do or have all that we are meant to alone.  We actually never could, but the old world supported that illusion which in turn created the need for competition and a belief in lack.
The current economic climate, despite its discomfort, is just a shattering of those old paradigms.  We are all interconnected and interdependent.  Even the reclusive monks of the world’s oldest Christian monastery in the world, St. Catherine’s, who live at the foot of Egypt’s dessert mountains in the Sinai still have to be connected to the outside for their survival.  They can’t do it alone, either.

So, in the new world, the first thing to realize is that we’re not going to be going at it alone.  The second thing to consider is that your unique talent is needed to help complete the new energy.  Your talent or skill as expressed in your business is the piece that will help unlock someone else’s potential.  Then that person will help someone else, and so on.  But if it weren’t for you, the chain would be broken.

The next time you’re at an event, think about reprinting your business cards with this phrase on the backside: “How can we work together?”  It will make you feel quite different about how you approach people.  You’ll see how you’ll hold yourself differently, attract more people who just want to be in your field. Most of all, be in joy that you are on a mission of discovery.

I love being on this mission with you, Beloved %$firstname$%.  How might we work together?

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The origin of our work, The Missing Thread, has been to study those who defy the odds so that we might facilitate and teach a process for liberation, healing, success and activation of purpose.  It is on the backs of our ancestors that this wisdom, both ancient and contemporary, is experienced creating hope, power, safety and connectedness that change every cell of your being thus contributing to changing the world.  Whether it’s the Hopi elders and sacred writings speaking, or conscious activists healing, those who have faced death and those who have influenced us through their purpose-filled success, there have always been people who remind us to  DEFY THE ODDS. Those who precipitate movements of change do so by doing their own work from a place of compassion and power.

Napoleon Hill, author of “Think and Grow Rich,” said, “Tolerance and an open mind are practical necessities for the dreamer of today.  Those who are afraid of new ideas are doomed before they start.  Never before has there been a time more favorable to pioneers than the present.”  These words written in 1937 could just as easily have been written for today.  Napoleon Hill, one of the most quoted authors of personal development, success and prosperity, grew up in a small rural Virginia town.  He and his parents are said to have been poor– living in a two-room log cabin. Not unlike many of our own stories, Napoleon experienced loss and significant challenges in his life.  His mother died when he was 10 years old.  He then experienced a new extended family 2 years later as his father married again.  All of us doing personal work readily recognize Napoleon could have gotten stuck in the energy of struggle or abandonment but he defied the odds.  His success was not immediate.  He saved some money from working at a local newspaper so he could go to Law School.  He did not finish because of money challenges.

You can see Napoleon’s experience having moved beyond his own limitations in his encouragement to his readers: ”You have been disappointed, you have undergone defeat during the depression, you have felt the great heart within you crushed until it bled.  Take courage, for these experiences have tempered the spiritual metal of which you are made—they are assets of incomparable value.”

As Donny and I travel the country facilitating the “We Are The Ones Events,” we see those who choose to defy the odds.  The work that Napoleon Hill did was to transform his challenges into a gift just as we are seeing this movement of entrepreneurs, healers and change agents speak out with their bodies to defy the odds.  It is out of our wounds come many gifts that relate to our purpose.  If Napoleon Hill had not interviewed Andrew Carnegie out of which grew his research of some of the most influential, prosperous and successful people of his time, just think of the dearth of valuable material that would have been lost.  The impact of his work has seeded the lives of possibly thousands/millions of people.  As he said, “never before has there been a time more favorable to pioneers than the present”.

Yet as we travel the country with “We Are The Ones Events” it is clear that being inspired to make a decision to defy the odds and being unwavering in that decision are two different energies.  Building on the contributions of Napoleon Hill’s compilation of wisdom is the invitation to experience the truths that Hill gathered in his book, “Think and Grow Rich.” Without experiencing the freedom of an abundant mindset through the body, most people loose their inspired decision. When our Body Stories ™ kick in, that inspired decision then gets kicked out and struggle re-appears.  In this amazing time of turbulence, there is an opportunity to contribute in a bigger way as you commit to your own personal work, which includes your relationship to four significant areas:
visibility, money, community and marketing.  Commit to changing the stories in your body that inhibit you while you say, “yes” to visibility, money, community and marketing.

Keep putting up your “We Are The Ones” pictures on Facebook so we can feel the support of like-minded entrepreneurs, healers and change agents.  Join us in Newark or back in LA and most importantly ask yourself to defy the odds from a place of both power and compassion. And finally thank our ancestors who seek to remind us like Napoleon Hill: “Those who are afraid of new ideas are doomed before they start. Never before has there been a time more favorable to pioneers than the present…. “This changed world requires practical dreamers who can, and will put their dreams into action. The practical dreamers have always been, and always will be the pattern-makers of civilization”.

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We are blessed with a great deal of wild life around us for being in the city. On many occasions, our friend, the skunk, will walk by our house and of course at times in the neighborhood you may know he’s been around by that recognizable smell.  One of my American Indian teachers once told me the medicine of the skunk was about “walking your talk”.

In this movement of promoting cooperation and asking the question “how might we work together?”, Donny and I are seeing the primitive patterns of competition being challenged while we open up to the new kinds of relationships that sometimes very unexpectedly appear.  It’s a new time of “walking our talk” that none of us has ever gone through before.  It’s a time of embracing cooperation more fully to be more inclusive which runs against many of the programs we have been given.

“All or none” or “black and white” thinking, feeling and behaving are ways of reacting you have learned from growing up in a family, culture, religion and political environment that says that the world is not safe.  The result is you feel like you have enemies and competition is natural.  These old stories live in your body and show up in your relationships and your business.  Addressing these black and white ways of approaching relationships and expressing your business are what’s being highlighted in this article and upcoming articles.

Black and white thinking is being challenged

Black and white thinking is being challenged as you who are conscious look at what truth is and what seems true.   Here are some examples:

No matter what you think of the Catholic Church, there have always been those priests and nuns that create change from the inside out.  People like Archbishop Oscar Romero who spoke of liberation for the people might be an example.

No matter what you think of government, there have always been those influencing policy for the highest good from the inside out.  President Lincoln who stood against slavery stood for the truth of equality.

No matter what you think of wealthy corporate organizations, there have always been those who have been instruments of social change to escalate the solutions of world issues.  People like Oprah Winfrey and her corporation have reached out and made significant changes for social justice around the world.  And of course, there have been those institutions that at times have subjugated, oppressed and inhibited the change for the good of all.

As we view the oil spill off the Gulf Coast, as we hear of reaction to the new immigration bill in Arizona and as we listen to the political spins of the day manipulating the facts, it leaves those conscious people who are on the inside of these institutions feeling hopeless and entrepreneurs committed to global solutions feeling significantly angry.

A movement of change that holds “none are free until all are free” heralds a call to all who desire to be change agents to consider new models. Models of doing business that welcomes working together and being in service which may run against conventional models of doing business but are clearly the way of the conscious entrepreneur and even conscious corporate business seeking change in today’s world.

Bridge Building.

“How might I work with you?” is the question Donny and I are making a mantra to facilitate these new models of business that call for bridge building, not black and white thinking.  If you see others as your enemy or your competition, you may feel threatened and create an uninviting smell.  But if you ask the question as an opportunity for you to heal, become more conscious and to be open to the abundance there for all, then the energy totally shifts.

Donny and I worked with a restaurant business owner whose business has been declining for two years.  Across the street from his restaurant there are (at each corner) three flourishing restaurants that he saw influencing his lack of business.  When we got him playing creative brainstorming we asked him to consider how he might be in cooperation rather than competition. When he got that, there was an energetic shift.  The creative juices of a whole marketing plan began to emerge as we helped him consider joint ventures, service, altruistic projects, being more elegant to his customers and acknowledging the unique gifts his restaurant brings to the community.  Just by considering the question of cooperation the ways seemed to just pour out.

If you’re getting stuck, then ask yourself,  “Am I putting out a defensive smell or am I welcoming cooperation energetically?”  Whether it is the restaurant owner or some political crisis, the solutions are there.  It may simply begin with “how might we work together”.  There is a Quaker saying,  “No one is my enemy.” Some of the answers you seek for yourself and our world may emerge graciously as we walk our talk and open to the energy of cooperation.

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No matter what your views might be on the economy, global warming or health care, one thing for sure is that new social, economic and political models are trying to break through.  One of the ways those breakthroughs are happening is in the area of gender.  For the entrepreneur on a spiritual path, it is an opportunity for your contributions to shift the paradigm of consciousness by unleashing the power of cooperation, equality and wealth for all who commit the law of gender.

Among all the universal laws, gender is the least spoken about, yet it is actually the law that is responsible for the current reemergence of much of the ancient wisdom around wealth consciousness.  You left-brain pragmatists may be ready to stop reading this esoteric treatise so let me flesh it out quickly.  Anything in our lives that is repressed will be eventually be expressed somehow.  There is only so long a pressure cooker can build up steam until it must be released or explode.  The structures, laws and religious ideologies that have been developed over the past 2000 years have held the feminine and masculine principles as unequal.  I believe the current world crises we’re experiencing have to do with the collapse of structures that no longer serve us personally as well as globally. We are witnessing the reemergence of the feminine and the masculine principles as they seek to balance themselves.

The law of gender is a natural geyser that is beginning to gush forth with opportunities.  For the entrepreneur it can be seen in what people are buying: trust, authenticity and an experience are what people are looking for.  These are clearly more feminine attributes, so your products and services need to be energetically heart-based and offer an experience of change.  How exciting it is when your highest service as expressed through your business and what your clients are looking for are in perfect harmony.

The law of gender has little to do with the sexes of male and female, yet it has everything to do with recognizing the wholeness of one’s feminine and masculine aspects no matter what gender identity or sexual orientation you have.  Inner balance and integration are essential things for making our businesses reflect the change in the world we desire.  Both male and female entrepreneurs who acknowledge this new emergence may be on the cutting edge as they offer products and services that empower everyone with the opportunities for wealth.  Entrepreneurs who listen to their emotions, their body and their intuition will find themselves on the cutting edge as well as presenting new models of change.

For example, Tony Shay, CEO of Zappos, has dipped into this pool of wisdom by creating a business culture of happiness that encourages expression, fun and self-care by offering an environment where spontaneity erupts like a geyser.  Even in the corporate world, Richard Branson’s Virgin America supports this emergence.  Donny and I fly Virgin regularly and are aware their staff have fun and have created an experience with subtle things like purple mood lightening.  This changes how people enjoy flying.

The ancients knew each person in their tribe had their own unique gift to offer the group.  It was absolutely necessary for the individual’s gift to be given for the tribe in order for the tribe to be whole.  As we as entrepreneurs balance the feminine and masculine aspects, new models of business, trade, money and cooperation will emerge.  Muted voices are being expressed.  The law of gender reminds you as an entrepreneur to uncover your gifts hidden in your closet.  What you have yet to express may be the very thing that propels your business into the next level.  The law of gender may be like a geyser helping us remember who we are as we express our purpose through our businesses.  As it is with the geyser you, too, must be willing to erupt, take risks and genuinely put your gifts out there.

This leads me into the last notion of the law of gender that says everything has a period of gestation.  The gestation of a seed, child, business or an activation of purpose calls for freeing yourself of an old story in order to grow with the truth.  Your gift is needed now!  The period of gestation for entrepreneurs expressing the law of gender is now.  What is the gift of your business?  Affirm your gift and announce to the universe your willingness to express your gift through your business.

This is time of the geyser breaking though the crust of repression to bring forth new models of expression.  As Joseph Campbell said, “We must be willing to get rid of the life we’ve planned, so as to have the life that is waiting for us.”

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