Write Your Own Life

Write Your Own Life | From A 6th Bowl of Chicken Soup for the Soul ~ p. 344

Let’s play a game.
Suppose you were given a pen, a beautiful golden writing pen.
But there is one catch to this pen, it’s sealed shut, so that you can’t find out how much ink it has.
It might run dry after you write the first few words, or it could have enough ink to create a
You can’t really know for certain.
You just have to take a chance on how long the ink will last.
Then again, there’s no rule that says you have to write anything.
Instead of using the pen, instead of taking a chance, you could put it in a drawer.
Hide it someplace where it will never write a word – never leave a mark.
But if you decide to use the pen, what would you do with it?
Would you plan and plan before you ever wrote a word?
Would you plan so much that you never got to writing?
Or would you plunge right in, letting a torrent of words spill from your pen, taking you wherever
your thoughts might lead?
Would you write cautiously and carefully, as if the pen might run dry at any moment?
Or would you write as if the ink would last forever?
Would you write to please yourself, or would you write for the pleasure of others?
Would your words be brilliantly bold, or lifeless and plain?
And of what would you write?
Of love, hate, despair, hope, or nothing at all.
There’s a lot to think about in this game, isn’t there?
Now, let’s play another game.
Suppose you were given a life…


Little Children Follow Me

A careful man I must be,
Little children follow me.
I do not dare go astray,
For they will go the self-same way.

I cannot escape their watchful eye,
Whatever they see me do, they try.
Like me they say they’re going to be,
Little children who follow me.

I must remember as I go,
Through summer suns and winter snows,
As I am building, for the years to be,
That little children follow me.



The “Big Rocks” of Life

A while back I was reading about an expert on subject of time management. One day this expert was speaking to a group of business students and, to drive home a point, used an illustration I’m sure those students will never forget. After I share it with you, you’ll never forget it either.

As this man stood in front of the group of high-powered overachievers he said, “Okay, time for a quiz.” Then he pulled out a one-gallon, wide-mouthed mason jar and set it on a table in front of him. Then he produced about a dozen fist-sized rocks and carefully placed them, one at a time, into the jar. When the jar was filled to the top and no more rocks would fit inside, he asked, “Is this jar full?” Everyone in the class said, “Yes.”

Then he said, “Really?” He reached under the table and pulled out a bucket of gravel. Then he dumped some gravel in and shook the jar causing pieces of gravel to work themselves down into the spaces between the big rocks.

Then he smiled and asked the group once more, “Is the jar full?” By this time the class was onto him. “Probably not,” one of them answered.

“Good!” he replied. And he reached under the table and brought out a bucket of sand. He started dumping the sand in and it went into all the spaces left between the rocks and the gravel. Once more he asked the question, “Is this jar full?” “No!” the class shouted.

Once again he said, “Good!” Then he grabbed a pitcher of water and began to pour it in until the jar was filled to the brim. Then he looked up at the class and asked, “What is the point of this illustration?”

One eager beaver raised his hand and said, “The point is, no matter how full your schedule is, if you try really hard, you can always fit some more things into it!”

“No,” the speaker replied, “that’s not the point. The truth this illustration teaches us is: If you don’t put the big rocks in first, you’ll never get them in at all.”

The title of this letter is The “Big Rocks” of Life. What are the big rocks in your life? A project that YOU want to accomplish? Time with your loved ones? Your faith, your education, your finances? A cause? Teaching or mentoring others? Remember to put these BIG ROCKS in first or you’ll never get them in at all.

So, tonight or in the morning when you are reflecting on this short story, ask yourself this question: What are the “big rocks” in my life or business? Then, put those in your jar first.


The Value of You

A well-known speaker started off his seminar by holding up a $20 bill. In the room of 200, he asked, who would like this $20 bill? Hands started going up. He said, I am going to give this to one of you, but first, let me do this. He proceeded to crumple the bill up.

He then asked, who still wants it? Still the hands were up in the air.

Well, he replied what if I do this? He dropped it on the ground, and started to grind it into the floor with his shoe. He picked it up, now crumpled and dirty. Now, who still wants it? Still hands went into the air.

My friends, he said, you all have learned a very valuable lesson. No matter what I did to the money, you still wanted it, because, it did not decrease in value. It was still worth 20 dollars.

Many times in our lives, we are dropped, crumpled and ground into the dirt by the decisions we make and the circumstances that come our way.

We feel that we are worthless, but, no matter what has happened or what will happen, you will never lose your value, dirty or clean, crumpled or finely creased, you are still priceless to those who love you.

The worth of our lives comes not in what we do, or whom we know, but by who we are.

You are special, don’t ever forget it!


A man and his son

A man came home from work late again, tired and irritated, to find his 5-year old son waiting for him at the door.

“Daddy, may I ask you a question?” “Yeah, sure, what is it?” replied the man. “Daddy, how much money do you make an hour?” “That’s none of your business. What makes you ask such a thing?” the man said angrily. “I just want to know. Please tell me, how much do you make an hour”, pleaded the little boy. “If you must know, I make $20.00 an hour.” Oh,” the little boy replied, head bowed. Looking up, he said, “Daddy, may I borrow $10.00 please?”

The father was furious. “If the only reason you wanted to know how much money I make is just so you can borrow some to buy a silly toy or some other nonsense, then you march yourself straight to your room. You don’t need any more toys! Go play with the ones you already have. I work long, hard hours everyday and don’t have time for this.”

The little boy quietly went to his room and shut the door. The man sat down and started to get even madder about the little boy’s questioning. How dare he ask such questions only to get some money.

After an hour or so, the man had calmed down, and started to think he may have been a little hard on his son. Maybe there was something he really needed to buy with that $10.00 and he really didn’t ask for money very often. The man went to the door of the little boy’s room and opened the door. His son was laying on the bed. “Are you asleep son?” he asked. “No daddy, I’m awake,” replied the boy. “I’ve been thinking, maybe I was too hard on you earlier,” said the man. “It’s been a long day and I took my aggravation out on you. Here’s that $10.00 you asked for.”

The little boy sat straight up, beaming. “OH, thank you daddy” he yelled. Then, reaching under his pillow, he pulled out some more crumpled up bills. The man, seeing that the boy already had money, started to get angry again. The little boy slowly counted out his money, then looked up at the man. “Why did you want more money if you already had some?” the father grumbled. “Because I didn’t have enough, but now I do,” the little boy replied. “Daddy, I have $20.00 now. Can I buy an hour of your time?”


Take time for 10 things

  1. Take time to Work ~~ it is the price of success.
  2. Take time to Think ~~ it is the source of power.
  3. Take time to Play ~~ it is the secret of youth.
  4. Take time to Read ~~ it is the foundation of knowledge.
  5. Take time to Worship ~~ it is the highway of reverence and washes the dust of earth from our eyes.
  6. Take time to Help and Enjoy Friends ~~ it is the source of happiness.
  7. Take time to Love ~~ it is the one sacrament of life.
  8. Take time to Dream ~~ it hitches the soul to the stars.
  9. Take time to Laugh ~~ it is the singing that helps with life’s loads.
  10. Take time to Plan ~~ it is the secret of being able to have time to take time for the first nine things.

Lessons From Trees

  1. It’s important to have roots.
  2. In today’s complex world, it pays to branch out.
  3. If you really believe in something, don’t be afraid to go out on a limb.
  4. Be flexible so you don’t break when a harsh wind blows.
  5. Sometimes you have to shed your old bark in order to grow.
  6. If you want to maintain accurate records, keep a log.
  7. It’s okay to be a late bloomer.
  8. Avoid people who would like to cut you down.
  9. As you approach the autumn of your life, you will show your true colors. You could be brilliant!

21 suggestions for success

by H. Jackson Brown Jr.

  1. Marry the right person. This one decision will determine 90% of your happiness or misery.
  2. Work at something you enjoy and that’s worthy of your time and talent.
  3. Give people more than they expect and do it cheerfully.
  4. Become the most positive and enthusiastic person you know.
  5. Be forgiving of yourself and others.
  6. Be generous.
  7. Have a grateful heart.
  8. Persistence, persistence, persistence.
  9. Discipline yourself to save money on even the most modest salary.
  10. Treat everyone you meet the way you want to be treated.
  11. Commit yourself to constant improvement.
  12. Commit yourself to quality.
  13. Understand that happiness is not based on possessions, power or prestige, but on relationships with people you love and respect.
  14. Be loyal.
  15. Be honest.
  16. Be a self-starter.
  17. Be decisive even if it means you’ll sometimes be wrong.
  18. Stop blaming others. Take responsibility for every area of your life.
  19. Be bold and courageous. When you look back on your life, you’ll regret the things you didn’t do more than the things you did.
  20. Take care of those you love.
  21. Don’t do anything that wouldn’t make your mom proud.

Eight Gifts That Do Not Cost A Cent

But you must REALLY listen. No interrupting, no daydreaming, no planning your response. Just listening.
Be generous with appropriate hugs, kisses, pats on the back and handholds. Let these small actions demonstrate the love you have for family and friends.
Clip cartoons. Share articles and funny stories. Your gift will say, “I love to laugh with you.”
It can be a simple “Thanks for the help” note or a full sonnet. A brief, handwritten note may be remembered for a lifetime, and may even change a life.
A simple and sincere, “You look great in red,” “You did a super job or “That was a wonderful meal” can make someone’s day.
Every day, go out of your way to do something kind.
There are times when we want nothing better than to be left alone. Be sensitive to those times and give the gift of solitude to others.
The easiest way to feel good is to extend a kind word to someone, really it’s not that hard to say, Hello or Thank You.


What Is Life?

Life is an Adventure … Dare it
Life is a Beauty … Praise it
Life is a Challenge … Meet it
Life is a Duty … Perform it
Life is a Love … Enjoy it
Life is a Tragedy … Face it
Life is a Struggle … Fight it
Life is a Promise … Fulfill it
Life is a Game … Play it
Life is a Gift … Accept it
Life is a Journey … Complete it
Life is a Mystery … Unfold it
Life is a Goal … Achieve it
Life is an Opportunity … Take it
Life is a Puzzle … Solve it
Life is a Song … Sing it
Life is a Sorrow … Overcome it
Life is a Spirit … Realize it


Long Version

Life is a challenge, meet it.
Life is a gift, accept it.
Life is an adventure, dare it.
Life is a sorrow, overcome it.
Life is a duty, perform it.
Life is a tragedy, face it.
Life is a road, build it.
Life is a treat, share it.
Life is a gamble, bet on it.
Life is a game, play it.
Life is a mystery, unfold it.
Life is a song, sing it.
Life is a thirst, quench it.
Life is an experience, enjoy it.
Life is a book, write it..
Life is a journey, complete it.
Life is a blessing, praise it.
Life is an event, participate in it.
Life is a race, run it.
Life is a tale, tell it.
Life is a vision, see it.
Life is a symphony, hear it.
Life is a play, act it.
Life is an elixir, drink it.
Life is an opportunity, recognize it.
Life is a statement, say it.
Life is a quest, undertake it.
Life is a picture, paint it.
Life is a promise, keep it.
Life is a struggle, strive for it.
Life is a risk, take it.
Life is a goal, achieve it.
Life is a puzzle, solve it.
Life is a possibility, create it.
Life is a lesson, learn it.
Life is a blank canvas, fill it.
Life is a choice, choose it.
Life is a right, stand up for it.
Life is as hard as rock, sculpt it.
Life is costly, work for it.
Life is beautiful, appreciate it.
Life is precious, cherish it.
Life is tenuous, fight for it.
Life is awesome, admire it.
Life is real, believe in it.
Life is exquisite, savor it.
Life is knowledge, know it.
Life is incredible, be inspired by it.
Life is alive, feel it.
Life is love, live it.
Life is life, love it.
Life is Light, SHINE!