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The importance of gratitude

Thank you signAlmost all of us have been embittered by some event or the other in our lives… in truth, very few of us if any make it out of this world without the emotional scars to show for it. Although life is a wonderfully precious gift, it can also be a very difficult experience if we are to be completely honest. We’ve all had painful experiences that have made us sad, angry, depressed, ashamed, frustrated, and so on. As we all probably know (perhaps a bit too well), there isn’t anything especially pleasant about any of the above emotions. Worse still, these emotions can linger for extended periods of time, eventually altering the very fabric of who we are in a negative way unless we are careful. You may have seen several examples in your own life of people who started out as really sweet souls until they were subjected to constant bullying or years of abuse which forced them to undergo the plutonic metamorphosis from sweet soul to an individual with the cold heart of a well seasoned assassin. Continue reading The importance of gratitude

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Anatomy of the human knee

The remarkable human knee is one of the most complex and important joints in the human body. It is built to simultaneously embody the attributes of strength and flexibility and is put to near constant use to facilitate the performance of a myriad of actions. Your knee has to be sturdy enough to support the impact of your upper body weight while walking or running, yet flexible enough for you to fold yourself into the lotus position for a meditation session for example. The knee joint is mostly made up of components like bone, muscle, ligaments, tendons, cartilage… and each of the component parts of the knee serves a distinct function. The bones of the knee joint provide support, the surrounding muscles furnish the human with the ability to control his/her movements, the ligaments and tendons within the knee joint provide stability, and the cartilage provides cushioning to absorb the shock from the constant pounding associated with daily movement and exercise. When healthy, the components of the knee work together so that we can walk, run, jump, and change direction instinctively. As a matter of fact, the knee works so well when healthy, that many of us do not fully appreciate its importance until something goes awry. I can say that with confidence because I for one certainly didn’t appreciate the benefit of having two perfectly functional knees until I injured one of them. Continue reading Anatomy of the human knee

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The most important resource we have is…

creativitySince the dawn of human consciousness, the need to survive has remained perhaps the most fundamental of all human instincts. To put this another way, we humans are naturally impelled to do whatever it takes to survive regardless of the personal or environmental cost. To improve our chances of survival, we’ve become the ultimate opportunists; capitalizing on our ability to bend the utility of the resources around us to meet our needs. As an example, our ancestors converted sharp stones into cutting tools such as primitive spears and knives, eventually using those same tools to kill animals for food. At some point in our progression as a species, it occurred to us that the skin from the animals we killed for “lunch” could be used as clothing to keep us from freezing to death. This sort of flexible and practical use of the resources around us remains an integral part of human behavior till this very day. As a matter of fact, it is a major reason why we are still sitting pretty as the kings and queens of this beautiful third rock from the sun. Continue reading The most important resource we have is…

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The very best of friends are…

Teamwork couple climbing helping hand
None of us really had a say in whether or not our parents fell in love or how many siblings they ended up giving us. As a result, some of us get stuck with one or two really annoying siblings that we have to deal with for the remainder of our natural lives. It doesn’t require much mental effort to imagine how difficult it must be to live with an irritating sibling absent the power to permanently distance yourself from his or her antics. While it can be an unfortunate reality that none of us get to choose our biological families, we each have total and utter control over who we allow into our inner circle of friends. To some, the idea of carefully selecting your group of close friends may seem a little cocky but if you live long enough, experience will teach you that it is something you must absolutely do. Truth be told… If you allow too many negative people into your life, they’ll eventually harm or destroy you in some way or another. The world is already difficult enough so please take the time to carefully select the highest quality friends that you can find as they will continue to help you grow and prosper throughout your life’s journey. Continue reading The very best of friends are…

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Maintaining a healthy cash flow in life

happy man pumping fists celebrates success under money rain
 

Brief philosophical take on the origins of money…

For us humans, the need to survive continues to persist at the summit of all our needs. To effectively survive in our world, we require things of value such as food, clothing, and shelter. Although there are some notable exceptions that could/can do it all (such as Leonardo Da Vinci), most people – like the individual cells of the human body – are specialized. Since many of us are specialized in our area of expertise, it is so often the case that we must frequently depend on each other to survive. In this way, our human race is reminiscent of a giant human body with each human representing a single cell. Think about it for a second… your brain cells depend on your heart cells to force the beating heart to send them the rich supply of blood they need to function properly because they (your brain cells) cannot do it themselves. In much the same way that our brain cells depend on our heart cells for adequate blood supply to function, we frequently depend on the expertise and resources of the people around us to survive.

In order to gain access to the expertise of those around us, we very often must give them something they value in return. Ages ago, humans would trade goods and services for other goods and services in what was known as the “trade by barter” system. The problem with this system is that there was no standard unit of trade. I mean who is to say whether or not giving you seven loaves of freshly baked bread is fair payment for one of your goats? The other problem with this system must have been the difficulty of physically carrying around the wares that people were willing to exchange for other valuable things they desired. To circumvent all of this annoyance and inconvenience, we eventually created currency in the form of coins made from precious metals such as gold and silver and used them as a medium of exchange. As time elapsed, our currency morphed from metallic coins into many different forms… from elaborately printed paper notes, to the current digital form that magically appears in many of our online bank account interfaces on the 1st and 15th of every month. Continue reading Maintaining a healthy cash flow in life