Welcome to Provide Your Own - motivation

A Cardboard Bicycle

Izhar Gafni should be an inspiration for us all. He made a bicycle out of cardboard. Everyone thought he was nuts – impossible they said. The idea kept bothering him, so his wife encouraged him to try – he wouldn’t have peace until he at least tried it. You can see the results in the video from this article.

Don’t let naysayers discourage you from pursuing your ideas or dreams. Just do it – what have you got to lose?

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When something goes wrong…

I love to build and sail wooden boats when I have the time. One of my favorite boat designers – Ross Lillistone, has written a very encouraging article on how to deal with obstacles and mistakes made when working on a project.

Although the article is geared toward boat builders, it contains good advice for all of us. Frequently we make a big mistake in our project. It then leaves us frustrated and we often abandon the project. Abandoned projects are very hard to come back to. Instead of being stymied by setbacks, we should correct the mistake as best as we can and continue on. It is the overall quality in a project that makes the difference – not the absence of any mistakes. Don’t let perfectionism stand in your way.

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15 Minutes a Day …

…can change your life. No, this is not meant as a trite phrase. I really do mean it. This idea was inspired by a short but sweet TED talk by Matt Cutts called Try Something New for 30 Days. After listening to the talk, I started brainstorming about what 30 day challenges I would like to do.

Here is my short list:

  • Clean room/office for 15 minutes every day
  • Practice my violin for 15 minutes every day
  • Work on learning Spanish for 15 minutes each day
  • Do something to give someone an emotional lift or encouragement
  • Work on a goal for 15 minutes every day, even if just to think about it

The last one – working on a goal, would actually be multiple 30 day challenges. Each one would be a goal I have wanted to do for a long time, but never got around to it, or can’t figure out how to accomplish it.

If you look at my list, most of the items are things I have always wanted to do, but never have done so – things like keeping a clean organized room, learning to play violin decently, learning Spanish, and other big goals. As … Read the rest

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You Can Do Miracles

When you believe. The words of this hit song are more true than we might think. You can do miracles. What hinders you is your lack of faith. Consider one of the major themes preached by Jesus. To wit:

Believe ye that I am able to do this? – Matt 9:28

Thy faith has made thee whole – Matt 9:22

Be not afraid, only believe – Mark 5:36

If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth – Mark 9:23

That is only a taste of what he preached. While many of his sayings on faith are regarding faith in God, don’t think that the principle of faith are only limited to believers in Christ. Faith itself has an even broader scope. I do not diminish the immense value of faith in God and Christ. Yet, I do not want to limit the application of faith to that toward God only. Faith is an inherent quality of man. While it applies to God, it also applies to virtually everything else in life. Faith is a difficult thing to obtain. It is also fragile. Consider another thing Jesus said:

O faithless and perverse generation, how long shall

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