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"What can we do, starting today, to build lasting success?"...."We all want to be part of something. We all want to feel great about the choices we make."

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Awaken Your Day - Sept 23, 2011 - Walking In Your Shoes

" Do not think of knocking out another person's brains because he differs in opinion from you. It would be as rational to knock yourself on the head because you differ from yourself ten years ago. "
- Horace Mann, 1796-1859

Have you ever found yourself doing something new, like playing a sport, or even a new job, and someone better than you gets angry or impatient with you for slowing them down; being in the way?

Funny how they forget that they were just learning once too.  How they forget what that was like, and only see you as an obstacle, and an inconvenience.

Remember how you felt at that moment?
Awkward, and intimidated maybe.  Out of sorts, and certainly uncomfortable.

Ever wonder if you were the creator of those feelings in someone else...when you acted the very same way?
Consider it.

I do not believe that any of us are without life's ironic lessons.  Sadly, they do more good once we experience them and become aware of our own actions.

Awareness is a great friend to have, and even a greater asset. That and an honest capacity for caring about the feelings of others.

Carry that awareness with you today.  Make it a "shoe on the other foot" kind of day.  Make it a day, without casting a stone, or an unnecessary judgement.

You will thank you later.

Good Morning,
Pierre Couturier
Husband, Father, Author and Aspiring Speaker

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Awaken Your Day - Sept 22, 2011 - Dream and Enjoy It

I dislike "Reality Television".  When you think about the scripted drama and the productions that make me feel that there is not so much "reality" involved, yes, that is when I dislike Reality Television. 

But...when I look into the faces of people expressing their dream, when I see true heart speaking passion and that expression distracts me from the suffocating elements of television production...when I hear the message and the dream speaks for itself ... well, that reality I long to see more of.  And I applaud the owners of those dreams for choosing to believe.

Please, Dream.  Let the dream speak to you ... and then express it without fear.


Good Morning.
Pierre Couturier
Husband, Daddy, Author and Dreamer

Monday, September 5, 2011

Awaken Your Day - Sept 6, 2011 - Laughter, a Good Part of Any Plan

" If you ask what is the single most important key to longevity, I would have to say it is avoiding worry, stress and tension. And if you didn't ask me, I'd still have to say it. "
- George Burns

Sometimes, a simple yet obvious truth, can be the best advice.

Good Morning
Pierre Couturier
Husband, Daddy, Author and Life Student

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Awaken Your Day - Aug 31, 2011 - One Moment Lights the Way...

Your day has begun.
You have already had numerous thoughts about what you will be doing, and what needs to be done.

Now.... Pause.

Just focus on one simple question, without distraction of the clock. 

What is good with you right now?

And on that beginning - take the step to greet the day.

Good Morning
Pierre Couturier
Husband, Daddy, Author

Monday, August 29, 2011

Awaken Your Day - Aug 30,2011 -

" The way we see the problem is the problem. "
- Steven Covey, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People

It is always beneficial, to take a moment away from a stressful environment, and breathe.

Pause for perspective.  Imagine time has stopped and all you can see is frozen still.  Now walk around the situation.  Take your time.  Examine the snapshot while you have "stepped" away.  Allow thought to flow without the strain of rebutal or need to be explained.  Look to understand. 

Is our view complete?  Do we see all the details from our position?  Are we responding from a point of vantage, or from an inner podium of emotional charge?  Are you still comfortable from your angle?

It is not always about right and wrong.  Finding solution is very gratifying.
Are you willing to be part of the solution...to what may not be a problem at all.

Just be aware of the value in a personal "time out".

Good Morning

Pierre Couturier
Husband, Daddy, Author and Mentor in Training

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Awaken Your Day - Aug 29,2011 -

"You are nothing unless it comes from your heart.  Passion, caring, really looking to create excellence.  If you perform functions only and go to work only to do processes, then you are effectively retired.  And it scares me - most people I see, by age 28, are retired...If you go to work only to fulfill the processes and functions then you are a machine.  You have to bring passion, commitment and caring - then you are a human being."
- Horst Schultze, former COO of the Ritz Carlton

I understand it is not easy.
We cannot all be those wonderful success stories; starting off in some difficult place and telling the tale of how we stood strong and worked hard and here we are today..."successful!"   .... by some definition.

Are you retired? That is really a shifty way of asking...have you given up and settled for your life to be a constant execution of the routine?  You traded passion for familiar somewhere along the way, and you cannot make this tale sound grand and wonderful, even if you could identify where along the way it happened.

There is no better time to ask ourselves, than in the doorway of a Monday morning, if we are idling like a machine.  Waiting for the start button, and another "shift" begins.

I am asking you, if you fit into this catagory, to become aware of how it makes you feel.  Can you accept that with a little more attention, you can look into some after market accessoies for this "familiar machine" and rekindle an old passion.  "Whatever you are, be a good one."

You might sweep floors.  You might fight in court.  You might drive a bus or you might have your own business.  Do Horst's words above describe your present feelings? 

Take a new interest in whatever it is you are doing.  Add a little thought, and passion to what you do.  Let your awareness help you refocus, and in that I believe is where we have the opportunity to see what we do with new eyes...and stepping out of the routine to have a look can be very informative.

Let an idea be created for what you really want to be, by giving more of yourself to the moments we are presently in.

Good Morning, I wish you a passionate "Ah Ha!"

Pierre Couturier
Husband, Daddy, Author and Family Dream Planner

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Awaken Your Day - Aug 26,2011 - Friday Smiles are Shining

A Friday creates a more appealing atmosphere all on it's own.  For many it is the end of the work week, and the beginning of our precious time off; from the job, the routine, the schedule.

So why should we not just relax our motivated mind, and join in the fun.

Please enjoy a few moments with one of my favorite comedians, Mr. Steven Wright.
Have a great day.

" I intend to live forever - so far, so good"

A beautiful woman moved in next door. So I went over and returned a cup of sugar. “You didn’t borrow this.” “I will.”

Borrow money from pessimists - they don’t expect it back.

I installed a skylight in my apartment. The people who live above me are furious.

Pierre Couturier
Husband, Daddy, Author

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Awaken Your Day - Aug 24, 2011 - Override Your Personal GPS

" There are people who make things happen; there are people who watch things happen; and there are people who say, 'What happened?' "
- Often referenced Quotation

Who do you choose to be today?

No long interpretive explanation.  Just making you aware that you do have a choice, in a matter you may not readily recall once the map of the day lays itself out before you have a chance to turn on your Personal GPS.

May it be an action filled morning.

Pierre Couturier
Husband, Daddy, Author and Day Planner

Monday, August 22, 2011

Awaken Your Day - Aug 23, 2011 -

" Let us be grateful to people who make us happy: They are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom. "
- Marcel Proust

Set aside some dedicated time to think of the good qualities of two people in your life that more often than not, make you smile. 

Remind yourself of a good moment that stands out for you with each of these people.  Now, today, should you encounter any time that tries to introduce you to stress, pause and think of these moments...and do your best to move forward with a more pleasant outlook.

Good morning,
Pierre Couturier
Husband, Daddy, Author and Friend

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Awaken Your Day - Aug 17, 2011 - Challenge the Doom and Gloom

" You will find yourself refreshed by the presence of cheerful people. Why not make earnest effort to confer that pleasure on others? Half the battle is gained if you never allow yourself to say anything gloomy."
- Lydia M. Child

I came by this in an email today.  And I almost turned and ran.  Then logic set in, and I saw a challenge for what it was worth.  If I could go a day and not allow gloom to enter into my itinerary...that would be a really nice accomplishment.  No gloom - not by my own creation nor to allow it thru outside influence.

"I think I can! I think I can!"
All Aaabbboooard.

Let's try.  Just like your body, if you feed it with all good foods and vitamins and minerals your whole system including your mind, operates much more efficiently and effortlessly.  Energy grows.  So, logic states that if we do the same with our mind and emotions...we will also think and operate with less toxins in our system that will only slow us down.

So...Challenge.  We need, for one day, to reduce our Gloom intake and our Waste output.   Do not absorb negativity around you.  Do not buy into and contribute to gossip.  Try not to complain about little details.  Do not be eager to add two cents to a rant in the lunchroom. 

And ... while you are focussing on reducing your wasted energy thru leaky gloom...we cannot just think about problems, we must also factor in some growth time.  So part two is a continuation of Monday...should something occur that is a difficult moment today, try to think of the good that can come out of it. 

One day.  One hour at a time.  If it helps, break it out into 15 min intervals; this will keep your mind on the task, and will give you little steps that will feel like building success with each progressive one.

May i predict that as you gain each 15min segment...you will pick up momentum in your thoughts and you may even hitch a ride on that new energy.

Blow out the carbon...give me a day of attentive effort to stop the spread of gloom.

Pierre Couturier
Father, Daddy, Author and Challenger

Monday, August 15, 2011

Awaken Your Day - Aug 1, 2011 - Just a Nice Thought

" I think that when you invite people to your home, you invite them to yourself. "
- Oprah Winfrey

That's a nice thought.  Your home is an expression of you in many ways, even more so than we may realize.

Life is busy and full of distractions. Sadly, one of the things we are easily distracted away from is our most familiar environment, home.  And by distracted, I mean that we do not often walk thru the stories that built the home. 

Remembering the markings on the door as our children grew taller. 
The tale of why that wall just had to be painted that color. 
The day the garage was finally finished. 
That signature planter out there on the deck that you found at the flea market.
How family always sleeps so well on that cheap mattress in the basement.
That first summer when you laid sod with the neighbors and got caught in the rain and mud getting home.
The day we met the builder for the final inspection ... and called this house, our home.

In a moment of no distractions, I find it sometimes fun to invite myself into our home.
It is refreshing to take the grand tour.

If these walls could talk...they would have so much to say.
And my wife and I can proudly say that it would start with,  "Welcome.  Let me show you around."

On your way out the door this morning, or just after you get your coffee, but before you sit down... just pause for a moment and find a part of you, in a reminding reflection from one of the many "Home" moments around you.

Invite you to gaze upon a reflection, of you.

Good Morning
Pierre Couturier
Husband, Daddy, Author

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Awaken Your Day - August 15, 2011 - Profit from Hard Moments

"I merely took the energy it takes to pout and wrote some blues."
- Duke Ellington, 1899-1974

A difficult moment crosses your path.  You live it once then in that moment.
You live it again when you stop your life, to tell the tale, again to ask "Why Me?", again when you choose to tell the tale again, and then to question how ... all the while, watching the difficult moment continue to get further away in time.  But reliving the moment, over and over, you keep the picture and the feeling alive and clear .

You can sacrifice more time, making yourself late for the living that was offered to you this morning, or you can recognize what it is and was... and roll it forward.  Don't stare difficulty in the back, calling out for it to come back and help you relive the harshness - again. 

Say "Thanks for coming! You taught me something today."  And then make the moment work for you. 

Turn that frown upside down.
When life hand you lemons, make lemonade.

Cliches can be annoying in a moment of difficulty...so just focus on the truth.
Every situation, good and bad, has a positive for you to collect and grow with.
How you respond to a situation will tell you how hard you looked for that positive.

"Look behind that cloud that hides it.... and you will see the sun is still shining." - Pierre

Good morning.
Pierre Couturier
 Husband, Daddy, Author and Life Student

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Awaken Your Day - Aug 4, 2011 - Word of the Day, "Expression"

Try to resist the urge to say the word ten times, or you could find yourself looking at it funny and wondering if you have in fact been saying it correctly all this time.

How do you express yourself? Be it anger, or happiness or love ... do you openly express with words, or gestures.  Do you write? Do you sing?  Or maybe you just stay quiet, and tucked into yourself?

Make today one of Expression.  If you feel regret, call an old friend.  If you feel love, call your parents, your children or your spouse.  Take the time to tell them about some feelings you want to share.  Make a connection thru the gesture. 

Do not worry about what to do after, or what to say after.  Make the connection, and let the moment carry the value for you...and what happens next will work itself thru.

Sometimes, a little expression from us about feelings, is exactly what someone else needs to Awaken Their Day.

Share a moment, light a day.

Good Morning
Pierre Couturier
Husband, Daddy, Author, and Expressionist.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Awaken Your Day - Aug 3, 2011 - Ode to be Silly

" USA Today has come out with a new survey - apparently, three out of every four people make up 75% of the population. "
- David Letterman

Now you just have to repeat that one.
Go ahead...around the water cooler, or sitting with the crew at lunch.
Say it, and then just carry on like you really meant to say it. 
And then wait for it....wait for it....
You are bound to get someone on it.

Humor, in a silly form can be just what is needed sometimes.

I was thinking about an upcoming camping trip with my wife and son, and I was thinking about what I could do with our boy to make sure he has a fun time.  And of course this train of thought takes you on an unplanned journey down memory lane.  One thought leads to another, until I remembered when I was younger, and how innocent our jokes were.

When I was little, I had a joke book, and my mom would sit and listen to me read each joke to her.  Even then, I think I felt uncomfortable being silly.  Now I see, that I really did not know what I was missing.  Buy, of all the jokes I told, Mom had her definate favorite.

What is green, and goes "Slam! Slam! Slam! Slam!" ?
Give up?
Answer:  A four door pickle.

Ya, I didn't get it either.  The picture did not help.  But my mom, she laughed so hard she cried.  Just a silly little boy's joke, but she laughed so hard.  I remember the sound, I remember her wiping tears, and I remember her smile.  One of my fondest memories of my mom....her hysterical laughter...and it will forever be tied to a silly little innocent joke.

I am all for personal reflections...especially when the moments we revisit tickle our heart once again.

Oh silly...I did not realize how much I missed you.
Now go ahead...remember how it feels.

Good Morning, Good giggles.
Pierre Couturier
Husband, Daddy, Author, and Silly student.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Awaken Your Day - Aug 2, 2011 - Renovations are not all Paint and Nails

" Every man is the architect of his own fortune."
- Sallust, 86B.C. to 34 B.C.

Today it is my intension to sign up for a class, and go back to school.  An educational facility.
I realized that while I desire to build the stairway to my dreams, I may need a foundation upon which to build my platform.  To reach for the stars, I know I need that little bit extra under my feet.

So, with that in mind, I came to understand that I want to do some renovations.  Adding a room you might say.  Knock down a wall or two that I probably was unaware that I had built ... but can now see them as obstacles in my way.  Good thing I was not a good carpenter, or these walls ( sometimes knows as fears or emotional barriers...paradigms...habits...rake on the lawn with the tines sticking up...)  well, then these walls would not be so easy to tear down.

I have a plan.  I did not have one before, and so the idea of self renovations was rather intimidating.  Renovations can sometimes paint a "words not required" picture that something is old, or worn out...or maybe even broke.  And then, it may feel hard to get excited over the idea now appearing to be a depressing chore. 

I need a renovation.  Not my life, just me.  Not a rebuild, just an addition.  I did a little research, skipped the page of self doubt because the fine print on that page is horrible on the heart...and I am glad to say, I have a blueprint for a successful addition.

Addition.  Not that scary, not "Change"... but a pleasant, refreshing, foundation assisting Addition.

Who knew I had in me?
How about you....anything you were curious to add on to your glowing personality?  A skill, or an experience; an adventure or just a dream that needs to be dusted off?

Renovations ... and look at that, they signed my name on the drawings.

Good Morning.
Pierre Couturier
Husband, Daddy to Inspire, Author and  Dream designer.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Awaken Your Day - July 29, 2011 - I remembered my spare rope.

If you feel like you have come to the 'end of your rope', and frustration and despair seem to be the only thing you can see, your next action is obvious. 

Pause the thoughts that are circling around you. 

Close your eyes and take a deep breath.

Now, with a steady mind ... tie a knot to another piece of rope.

In the darkest moments, it is easy to surrender our sight and reason.
Knowing this, you can trust your sense of touch to reconnect you to your memories and experience - to guide you to the light switch. 

The end of the rope is a great place to add an extention to venture further than you thought you could.

Hang on,
Good Morning
Pierre Couturier
Husband, Daddy, Author and Friend

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Awaken Your Day - July 28,2011 - Viruses Among our Thoughts

" At birth we are very much like a new hard drive - no viruses, no bad information, no crap that's been downloaded into it yet.  It's what we feed into that hard drive that starts the corruption of files."
- Nikki Sixx, Founder and Bassist of Rock Band Motley Crue

Inspiration can find you anywhere.

This whole analogy to viruses is not an uncommon one.  Nor can it be touched on in short form here...so I dare say we will visit it again in more depth.  For now, I think it is something that we can ponder throughout this day in a positive way.

Negative thoughts are viruses.  Gossip is a virus.  Stressing about the past mistakes we may have made - virus.  Excuses and procrastination...wonderfully designed viruses. 

Do you sometimes find yourself thinking about a time before, when "We used to..." and "We would laugh..." and my all time favorite agitation igniter, "Oh, if I knew then what I know now!!"

Guess what.... you know NOW what you know NOW that you did not know then, so why not take it and act on it instead of giving away energy to contemplating the impossible...energy to daydreams about wish it could have beens and speculating conversations about what you would have done different had you then known what you are referring to knowing ... Right Now.


Clean out the hard drive.  Run a complete system scan.  If you can sit there and create what you would have done differently back then, then you can actually do it Today and everyday.

Run a system scan...do you catch yourself in any of these moments? Can you identify 5 Viruses that you let run amok in your day, and your energy reserves...and the silver lining of your dreams? 

We all have corrupted files ... we trip on them daily.  What will we do with those files. 

Good morning...now run a full scan.  Your "system" will operate alot smoother.

Pierre Couturier
Husband, Daddy, Author and Comfortable 40 something.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Awaken Your Day - July 27, 2011 - Action Speaks Louder Than Fear

" You never know what you can do until you have to do it."
- Betty Ford

Not alot of deep, overexplanation today.
Quite simply...there is no better cure for your doubts and fears than just taking a leap of faith in yourself, and putting that first foot forward.

A little bit of action helps your dream wheel start turning. 

Time to start moving.  These birthdays don't stop for anyone.
Have a wonderful day.

Pierre Couturier
Husband, Daddy, Author and now...Older Friend.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Awaken Your Day - July 26, 2011 - Finding Our Own Solutions

" You can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get other people interested in you. "
- Dale Carnegie

There are those times, when thoughts are born and take on larger shape from but a single statement that magically initiated a chain reaction.

Often in these times, if we follow the trail of thoughts, and connect the dots ... we find other answers that previously had been disguised in cluttered corners of our hearts and minds.

Consider today's comment...and let the thoughts begin to flow...and then, open your mind to the picture they create.  Find your meaning, in the message.

Good morning
Pierre Couturier
Husband, Daddy, Author and Friend.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Awaken Your Day - July 21, 2011 - Attitude Increases Success Rate

"Ability is what you're capable of doing. Motivation determines what you do. Attitude determines how well you do it."
- Lou Holtz

I awaken this morning  knowing I have a task to complete today.
Actually, I have a list of tasks that should get finalized.

I know I have the ability to do them.  So I begin with no stress in that regard.
There may be a challenge to get them all complete in the time I have, but I do feel Motivated to do try.
For if I succeed, I can go on my days off feeling more at ease, knowing there are no loose ends for my return to work, nor for my office partner to contend with while I am away; thus allowing him time to work on his own tasks, without my added burdens.

I could put in a half share of effort...and get a one or two things cleared up. 
I could just not worry about it. 
Or, with just a little more dedication and a little less visitation... a little more attention to the moment and less dreaming on the next few days to come... a little more pride in my workmanship and respect for my co-workers, and honestly...you realize that the extra effort is minimal, and the work is done.

Would I want to work with me?
Yes...I feel I have become THAT guy.

Where is your attitude when it comes to the day ahead?
What ripple effect does it have when you walk into work?

Good Morning.
Glad you came in today.  It's always nice to see you.

Pierre Couturier
Husband, Da Dee, Author and Coworker.

Awaken Your Day - July 20, 2011 - Square One

"Everyone who got where he is has had to begin where he was."- Robert Louis Stevenson

Be it a desire for a good day, or a goal you have in mind, or designing that wonderful "Where do you want to be in five years?" answer...

Your first step forward ... is still forward.

Begin and Believe.
Momentum will rise.

We have to start somewhere...and it might as well be right here.

Good Morning
Pierre Couturier
Husband, Daddy and Mentor, Author and Friend

Monday, July 18, 2011

Awaken Your Day - July 19, 2011 - Only One You.

"There is only one you...Don't you dare change just because you are outnumbered."
- Charles Swindoll

Five things.
Five unique things about you ... that you honestly like about you.

Five things.
Five other unique things, that you are proud of about yourself.

Five minutes.
Five minutes to acknowledge you.

Sometimes, it is a well deserved moment that we take, to just sit back, breathe a relaxed breath...and take stock of some of our achievements, and our attributes.    A moment we overlook all too often.

There is only one you.  Get reacquainted.

Good morning to you.
Pierre Couturier
Husband, Daddy, Author and Friend.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Awaken Your Day - July 18, 2011 - Focus on What is Yours to Control

" A great preservative towards angry and mutinous thoughts, and all impatience and quarreling, is to have some great business and interest in your mind, which, like a sponge shall suck up your attention and keep you from brooding over what displeases you."
- Joseph Rickaby

Time is a very valuable asset.  But, everyday we spend some of it. 
The clicking of the clock and the turning of a calendar page, these are payments from our treasure that we cannot avoid paying.  These fees are extracted naturally.

With that thought, it should go without saying that for each daily transaction, we would want to invest this payment wisely.  Get a return on our trade.  Priceless time for....something that is yours to focus on.

However, it is far too easy to get caught in the trap of anger and frustration in our day, and start spending our "money" without discipline.  Like the spontaneous buying section just before the cashier, there is always some little widget or gadget or just gotta have it that captures our attention and energy.  A headline, a rumor, an alarm clock that didn't ring sooner.

Notice the similarity.  Standing in line at the till you see things you had no intention of buying when you came to that store.  That was not your intended transaction.  And most often, neither is allowing our selves to becoming more tightly focussed on an arguement, a traffic incident, a bad report, a coworker that is annoying, etc etc etc.  We get drawn in...and then brood over the transaction.  Spending more time...more precious time, on repeating it in our mind, instead of repeating our path to a goal or special interest over and over and buildiing energy up.

Consider angry expression to be like a money pit.  And consider time to be your money.  When we focus our energy on expressing, repeating, expanding...our frustraions and aggitations...we are tossing our money into a bottomless pit.  Speeding up the clock.  Paying compound interest...on a debt that is often not ours.

Preserve your strengths, your energy resources and watch compound interest work in your favor...as soon as you focus your attention to detail, on those details that lift you up -  above the dark clouds that we encounter .

Good morning.
No time for brooding sorry, I have something else on my mind.

Pierre Couturier
Husband, Dad, Author and Friend

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Awaken Your Day - July 15, 2011 - Dream a Little Dream for Me

"I paint objects as I think them, not as I see them."
- Pablo Picasso

When was the last time you looked up and saw a cloud for what it really was?
A picture book with rolling pages.

For the most part, I fear we have surrendered that innocent and amusing game of exploring our imagination and finding pictures and faces and storybook pages in the fluffy shapes that pass so casually overhead. 
Surrendered the game, and all the value that it brought with it.

Why is it that as adults, when we see clouds we have trained ourselves to think, "Overcast, Rain, Cold"?
What happened to "Hey that looks like...!"? With clowns and dogs and wild horses calling our attention skyward ... maybe I could find a story up there to tell my son.

I found my self this last evening gazing out the window lost in thought ... when suddenly up in the sky the face of an old witch appeared, with a long pointy nose, and an even more pointed chin to go with her evil grin.  I was going to call you, but then before I could even say a word...her chin was a seat and her nose was a man and I could see this crazy race car and out of no where this huge buffalo was going to hit the car but this space ship was coming from above him ...  and well... the story kind of gets a little weird from there.

Guess you had to be there.
I hope you find the spot I did, and hold hands with imagination for awhile. It's pretty neat.

Good Morning -
Pierre Couturier
Husband, "Dad! You come play, okay?", Author, Friend...Daydreamer

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Awaken Your Day - July 14, 2011 - Wishing and Hoping

"I bought a million lottery tickets.  I won a dollar."
- Steven Wright, Comedian

It is fun sometimes, to just allow the mind to wander and play "What if..."
And, sure it is fun to "Wish" for things...

As long as you don't just stand around and wait for that elusive magic to suddenly occur, and make it all easy in but an unrealistic moment.

Are you Waiting, or Are You Creating?
- Pierre Couturier

Good morning.
Pierre Couturier
Husband, Dad, Author and Friend

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Awaken Your Day - July 13, 2011 - So Easy to be Thankful

" If a fellow isn't thankful for what he's got, he isn't likely to be thankful for what he's going to get."
- Frank A. Clark

My apologies for being away for a few days.  Got a little distracted with quality family time.  Which brings us to today, and this moment.

If you have followed AYD for long then you know that periodically we stop, and give thanks to at least 5 things; just to get our thinking caps going and to remind our thoughts to remember.

So, as usual, I will go first.

I am thankful for simple moments that mean so much.  I was having a sandwich supper with my son tonite. No television, no distractions, just he and I and the tricks to get him to finish his supper.  My reward was that he ate, and he shared with me his laughter each time I played silly with, "Don't you dare eat that sandwich," and he proceeded to stuff his face into it.  The innocence in a child's smile...when you see the purity of his giggle in his eyes...for this I am so very thankful.

I am thankful that my wife still enjoys her girl nites out.  We have this little thing called Trust.  It is not only meant in the way we all automatically default to thinking, but for us it also means that we have an unspoken trust... I trust that she knows I expect her to be in the moment with her friends and to have her well deserved Self time when she is out.  She trusts that I feel and know that she deserves it, and I do not clutter it with insecure man thoughts of any kind. 

I am thankful for friends who understand my work, and understand when we do not have alot of time to share, but that the time we do share is valuable, and together we make the most of it.

I am thankful for my awareness.  Understanding where I have been has made me a leader of present moments, rather than a victim who continues to trade new days of opportunity, for old days of loss.

I am thankful the fire that burns within.  Any fire.  All the fires.  To feel passion for anything, is something precious.  To act on it, to share it with others... well, that is why we are here in the mornings.  Awakening our sleeping understanding of a fire that burns inside each and everyone of us. 

Go thru your list of any five.  I ask you.  I challenge you.  It takes but a moment to do, but the thoughts will stay with you all day.

I thank you for sharing your gratitude.  You will thank you as well.
Good Morning.

Pierre Couturier
Husband, Dad!!!!!, Author, Friend

Friday, July 8, 2011

Awaken Your Day - July 8, 2011 - The Weekend is Your Canvas

" The best way to predict the future is to create it."
- Peter Ferdinand Drucker

What will you do today, and this weekend, to move a step closer to your goals, your dreams? 
What action will you take to invest in accomplishment?

For any thing we want to happen, we are the artist in charge.
And the painting simply needs to get started.

Enjoy your creation.
Good Morning

Pierre Couturier
Husband, Da-Dee, Author, Friend...and Garage Cleaning artist today.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Awaken Your Day - July 7,2011 - Greatness is a Thought Away

" Nurture your mind with great thoughts; to believe in the heroic makes heroes."
- Benjamin Disraeli

It is well documented, and even more widely believed, that we become that which we think of most.
So why not put your thoughts into your self Belief, and the limitless possibilities you have when you embrace it?

Take a moment and truly just lose yourself in thinking great thoughts.  About your dreams, your career, your relationship, and mostly just about all that makes you the extraordinary person you are today.  Think of the peak moments you have seen and will see in all of these areas of your life.
It took some work to get here, now, to this level of success.  Think about it once in awhile.  Play connect the dots with your memory moments and see how they created the path you so adventurously have taken to this moment.  And then, lay out more dots of the next Great Thoughts that may lead you to even greater trails.
It is not a test, nor is it difficult, and it does not have a format or rules or anything to analyze. 
Just enjoy the simplicity of thinking Great Thoughts.
Oh, and if you utter the word "But" anywhere in those thoughts, then you really have not let yourself go to relax and enjoy the reward of the whole exercise.  Shame on you.
Good morning.
Gotta run, I get to see my wife and son today.
Great thoughts.
Pierre Couturier
Husband, Da-Dee, Author, and Thinker

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Awaken Your Day - July 6,2011 - Assignment Thursday

"What can you do right now to begin to turn your life around?  The very first thing is to start making a list of things to be grateful for."
- Joe Vitale, Author and Speaker

It is an assignment, and it speaks for itself, and the meaning behind it will speak to you with each item you write down, and each moment of thought you dedicate to them.

Sometimes, the best moments in a day, are in recognizing the ones that brought you this far.

Feel free to share your list with us.

Good Morning, Good day, and a Wonderful Right Now.

Pierre Couturier
Husband, Father, Author and Friend.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Awaken Your Day - July 5, 2011 - Your Successful Choices

“Success means doing the best we can with what we have. Success is the doing, not the getting; in the trying, not the triumph. Success is a personal standard, reaching for the highest that is in us, becoming all that we can be.”
~ Zig Ziglar

Worth repeating. Please read it again.

A very respected man, Mr. Ziglar’s words are relevant to many situations we experience. I would like to apply to them to one that I am sure has affected many of us; conflict in our working environment.

Often we encounter someone, or something in our day that finds a way to defy our nature, and brings to life that dark cloud within which begins to blanket us with negative frustration. This results in our expression of our darkened feelings. The feast on your good energy is now a two course meal.

We could spend our time drawing attention to the encounter of "inadequacies” of a co-worker, or a nonsensical situation that occurred ; telling anyone that will listen about what was done, or more aggravating, what was NOT done.

I could…and I have.

The lesson is - I find I am no better for doing so. No matter how many times I fall victim to the easy trap of blame and vent, I do not gain ground on feeling better with my expression of the frustration. I do not win. Whine and complain are an exhausting duet.
Destination – frustrated.


Personal Growth- 0 %

Accomplishment - a closed minded emotional view of the moment, where in a third party’s eyes I may be viewed as no better than the person or situation that brought me to this point.

However, there is some good news. With Awareness of this stealthy trap, we find we have Option 2 – granted not always easy to think of in an anger filled moment. Draw on awareness, and … Rise Above.

“It is not what happens to us, it is how we respond to what happens that defines us.”

Success is a personal standard, reaching for the highest that is in us, becoming all that we can be.”

Steps of success come in all shapes and sizes. Master your response with day to day situations, and you climb effortlessly. People, places, things and events may be beyond your control, but recognizing the moment for what it is will assist your actions to be proactive rather than reactive. Your actions in overcoming and rising to the familiar challenge – that is all you.

I dare assure you, your positive reaction will get noticed, and thus become another moment, of your growing success.

Good Morning - welcome to a day of Successful Choices.

Pierre Couturier
Husband, "Da-dee", Author, Friend and Occasional Babbler.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Awaken Your Day - July 4, 2011 - Some things are worth Repeating.

No, not the fourth grade...and not your driver's exam.  Preferably not month end reports, or tax audits, or your homework.

But yes to memories, and smiles and for certain we like to repeat our victories.  So, with that in mind, I came across some thoughts we shared on Aug 4, 2009...and I thought they were worth repeating.

Seize the day for what it is ... the beginning of a choice...to have a great week.

"I am more and more convinced that our happiness or our unhappiness depends far more on the way we meet the events of life than on the nature of those events themselves."
- Karl Wilhelm Von Humboldt

Combine this with the often quoted comment that it is not what happens to us but how we respond to what happens, and you can see that our success in many ways comes down to a practiced awareness.

An awareness of our gratitude for the things we have versus our envy for those things we do not.
An awareness of our passions, and how they motivate us to constantly step forward...big, or small.
An awareness of our achievements - that show us the greatness of how far we have come.
An awareness of how we desire to grow, learn and become rather than hiding in a shell.
An awareness that we are unlimited in what we can do.

When we go thru our days energized by the awareness that we are in charge of our moments, no matter what event we meet - we meet it with our best foot forward and our mind on our true destination. The idea is that a negative event, will then not control you but instead you will have the ability to navigate thru or past it, for you met it with power and not vulnerability. The shadow of the event, will not be allowed to make it look larger and more ominous for you are viewing it with open eyes and mind - which gives you a more direct light source for these moments.

You give yourself a better chance to see events for what they truly are, and not what emotion paints them to be.

The impact of an event is lessened, for your response to it is also more controlled. Unless of course it is a great and joyful moment...in which case you might let control go and just enjoy with reckless abandon.

Open your mind to the idea that you begin the day, with all the tools you need to be a great designer of the day that lies ahead, or to be a great handyman if you need to be to fix those moments that do not go so well.

Meet, greet, and respond accordingly.

Each day and event is like one of those kids books, where the choices you make during the story take you to an assortment of alternate endings.

Good morning, and great meetings.

Pierre Couturier
Husband, Da-Dee, Author,Friend and Dreamer

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Awaken Your Day - July 3, 2011 - Sunday Kind of Love

Sunday really should be a day of rest.
There should be no hurried schedules.  No firm appointments.
No regime.

Do we get so caught up in routine of our work week that we also create the same kind of pattern unwittingly with our valuable personal time...and in particular, our Sunday?

I like to think of Sundays as a time not so much for taking charge of the day, but rather letting it take charge of you.  Of course my wife would argue this as I do not always practice what I preach, and for a long time, I considered Sunday to be my catch up day.  Felt productive at the end of it...and usually exhausted.

So...let me throw some ideas at you.  The common denominator being that you have to take the value in the moments and maximize their worth.  You have to relax.

Go watch a ball game.  Make it a kid's league game.  Feel their energy and absorb the fun.
Call up a friend and go to the park.
Toss around a frisbee, or a football or just some conversation.
Read the paper....slowly.  Find those sections you so often skip over.
Flip thru a photoalbum...and let a memory remind you to smile.
Say Thank you...to everyone, for everything today.
Get an ice cream.  And lick it like it was your very first one.
Go for a walk and window shop on old main street.  Then buy yourself something...because it is just a wonderful day.
Take a deep breath.  And then take time to enjoy how it felt.  And take another.

Awaken your no hassle Sunday.
Keep it simple...and hold on for all it is worth.

I wish you well.
Good Morning.

Pierre Couturier
Husband, "Nite dad. I uv yoo", Author, Friend.

Friday, July 1, 2011

AYD - July 2, 2011 - You Have More In You

"If I accept you as you are, I will make you worse; however, if I treat you as though you are what you are capable of becoming, I help you become that."
- Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

They say that to be successful, one of the key elements is to surround yourself with like minded people.
Sometimes, however, it is not those that think like we do, or share our passions for the same dream that will provide that intensity match that promotes our fire ... sometimes, it is people outside of your dream but who still see your potential,  and respect you and your dream because you do, because you have shown them just who you can be ... sometimes those are the people that provide that encouragement right when you did not know you needed it.

In those moments, you may feel as though you are being challenged, and you are.  It is not offensive in nature.  Rather, it is respect in a challenge to reach for what you can be...and not try to hitch hike on excuses.

Friend, family, mentor, co-worker, or boss - if they allow you to just be, then they will never see you reach for the top row, where we all know the good prizes are.

"3 balls for two bucks.  Step right up. Everyone's a winner!  You sir, yes you! You look like you want to try..."

And, good morning.

Pierre Couturier
Husband, "Nite Dad", Author, Friend, and Believer

Thursday, June 30, 2011

AYD July 1, 2011 - Which way do I go? Which way do I go?

Alice came to a fork in the road. "Which road do I take?" she asked.
"Where do you want to go?" responded the Cheshire cat.

"I don't know," Alice answered.

"Then," said the cat, "it doesn't matter."
- Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland

There are times when we feel a little lost.  Hard to find the path, or direction that we yearn for to guide us to our meaning.  It is crucial that we do not allow our energy to be spent focussing on only the emptiness that comes at this time. When we do, we sadly discover that the only progress we have made is completing the negativity circle and planting our feet in our very own footprints...the ones we left when we started feeling this way.  By the way, when your heart feels heavy, those imprints we leave can get deep.

It is the very common understanding that when our spirits are low, our eyes follow.  I am not aware of too many dreams being found kicking pebbles and finding poetry lines that rhyme with "Oh, Woe is Me!"

Recognize this time for what it is.  An opportunity to find out something about yourself, thru brainstorming and exploring a new outlook.  Don't like the scenery in front of the eyes, blink....and look in another direction.  Change your poem to be, "Get to Know Me!"  and let that be your mission.  Who R U? 

It is not always easy to define what we want...so start by identifying clearly with what you Don't Want.  Your first step on finding a new trail could simply be the one you take AWAY from where you don't want to be...and then, well, you won't have any of those deep, sad footprints to retrace ... so you will have no choice but to lift your head up ...

When you see Alice, politely tell her to get out of the way...you have somewhere to get to.

Good morning...see you on the trail.
Pierre Couturier
Husband, Best Friend, Dad - DaDeee, Author and Explorer.

AYD - June 30, 2011 - Tough Jobs are Filled with Life Lessons

"The successful person makes a habit of doing what the failing person doesn't like to do."
- Thomas Edison

Let's be honest, the most obvious of these habits is good old fashioned Hard Work.

I had a job once that I thought was pretty simple.  Basic labour work.  Sweeping floors in a Fabrication shop.  All day, sweep.  All day tomorrow...sweep.  Some other odds and ends, and then, yup...sweep.  I did my job...and one day a Journeyman at the shop took it upon himself to teach me how to sweep properly. The lesson represented one of my most insightful of my life. Understanding that even something as simple as sweeping, had a more beneficial way to be done - opened my eyes to giving more quality effort in any task I had to do.

From that day on, more so than before, I embraced every task I was given. I would finish a job and while I waited around for direction from my foreman, I stayed busy doing whatever around me needed to be done. I was always in motion. There was always something to do, and it did not have to wait until I was told to do it. And yes, some of those tasks were tedious, boring and just not interesting. What I did not know, was that I was also being noticed. I was also making a difference because I was getting things done.

The value of my actions was shown to me indirectly when lay offs came. I was the least experienced out of four of us Labourers. I worked with a couple seasoned guys who made it pretty clear that they considered themselves too experienced and too good to do some of the work we were given. They said so, loud and clear. Last coffee came, and as I patiently waited for my envelope and my departure letter, the other three guys came in angry...and didn't even say goodbye. They all had envelopes.

I was not a bad worker, yet I still learned alot that day. The message was pretty clear, and hard to miss. And I remember to this day, why they kept this inexperienced, quiet, no complaining kid. I was the only labourer in that shop for some time after that, and somehow even the Project Manager knew my name and would stop me in the shop to ask me how I was doing.

You can leave a lasting impression, and create a solid name for yourself, just by applying your best effort...sometimes to the job no one else wants to do.

May you find a moment this morning that Awakens Your Day.

Pierre Couturier
Husband, "Hi Dad", Author and Friend

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Awaken Your Day - June 29, 2011 - And a Touch of Humor Should Guide You

"Think twice before you speak, and then you may be able to say something more insulting than if you spoke right out at once."
- Evan Esar, Esar's Comic Dictionary

You have to admit, there must have been a time when you walked away from a verbal smash and grab opportunity, only to think about what you SHOULD have said.  Let the memory serve you with a "one day we are going to look back at this and laugh" kind of smile.

And then in reality, allow yourself to explore the truth in the awareness of many situations where if we can avoid emotion filled retorts to a comment, or situation, or coversation - and think for but a moment longer before we retaliate with venom...we embrace the opportunity to reach out and take control of the moment before we make it worse for ourselves.

Alot like the game of hockey where the frustrated player ends up getting the penalty for retaliating, I too have made myself appear to be less competent when I reacted / retaliated without due care to an oppressor rather than taken a moment to assess the situation for what I clearly knew it to be, and then beaten him at his own manipulation.  "Mom! This guy at work is picking on me!"  You get the picture.

You hold your cards.  Spread them out so you can see what you have before you make your play.

Good morning, Twice.

Pierre Couturier
Husband, "Daddy, we play Crash, Okay?", Author and Friend.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Awaken Your Day - April 8, 2011 - The Road You Build Is Your Design

"A successful person is one who can lay a firm foundation with the bricks that others throw at him or her."
- David Brinkley

Many of you have come to the last leg of the race.  Rat race of a working week.
Friday shows you a light at the end of the tunnel; something to reach for; the finish line ahead.

Many of you will enter your weekend feeling like you need a break, and I am sad to say, you may even waste some of this refreshing reprieve from the day to day grind by moaning and complaining about the events of the week and how stressful they were.

Past tense.

Remember the Finish Line you reached for? 

Have you ever seen a marathon runner, finally finish the goal of completing the event, and then ask the reporters and television crew to follow them back along the course so they could see as they remember and retell the crew every place along the way that they stumbled or faced a tough moment?

I would think, you might want to look back, and say, "Ya, it was a tough week...but I made it and now I know I can do it! " 

And with that frame of mind...might I ask you just what you are capable of achieving this weekend, with your own time to invest ... in you ?

The road you build is by your design.
Use yesterday's news if you like, but the moment you are in, is much fresher material to mold.

Good Morning
Pierre Couturier
Husband, Daddy, Author and Friend

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Awaken Your Day - April 6, 2011 - With One Small Change, I Can ...

"One doesn't discover new lands without consenting to lose sight of the shore for a very long time."
- Andre Gide

We can get really deep with this idea...or we can keep it simple and find it very easy to apply it to our day.
Basically, if you wish to grow, expand, do new things, test the waters, dabble, or just let curiousity get the best of you...you have to be willing to input something new into your existing routine.  And, it is simple to start doing it.

If you go out for lunch today, order something new and not the safe usual.

If you go grocery shopping, put the ingredients for a new recipe on your list and then make it.

Read the full article in the paper and not just the headline.

Ask someone at work about their tasks, and get to know what all goes into their role.

Try on some clothes that you usually walk by because, "Oh, I just don't know".

Plan a one day get away on the weekend and see what your local area has to offer.

The ideas, are endless and can be small or large.  To introduce more awareness, more experiences, and maybe more joy into your life, you need not look far, you just need to begin by moving a little.

One step at a time, could see you Creating some wonderful new experiences and opening countless new doors.

Good Morning
Pierre Couturier
Husband, Daddy, Author and Friend.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Awaken Your Day - April 5, 2011 - Pursuit for Pleasure Today

"The greatest pleasure in life is doing what people say you cannot do."
- Walter Bagehot, 1826-1877

Yes that really does enhance the feeling of achievment. 
So why just stop the pleasure there?

Could you not then also rise to the challenge with ANY negativity?
Could we not stand firm when confronted by negative energy from someone or something in our day?  Because really, that too is a form of draining your belief that the moment or situation could not be something better.

Almost as if to say, "You cannot find a better perspective."

This may just be the one time when it is okay to derive pleasure at someone else's expense.

How often in your day could you find pleasure in being more powerful that someone else's negative drive to absorb your energy?

I dare you to find out.  What have you go to lose, except maybe some negative bonding?

Good morning,

Pierre Couturier
Husband, Da-deee, Author, Friend

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Awaken Your Day - Mar 31, 2011 - Been There, Done That, Respect It

"Show me a man that cannot bother to do little things, and I'll show you a man who cannot be trusted to do big things."
- Lawrence D. Bell, Founder, Bell Aircraft

If you find yourself thinking and feeling that you are too good, or too important to do tasks you deem to be beneath you, then you may not have the best perspective of the moment at hand.

I have had some interesting jobs in my work experience.  Everything from a telephone operator, to a construction worker, to entertainment, and sweeping floors.  I have even made beds and cleaned toilets. At the time, I may have hated some of my jobs, but reflecting back, I would not change a moment.

I like to think that working my way up, gave me a better perspective, and appreciation for the efforts that many do, so that the rest can have comfort. 
People sometimes have to take on a job that seems to be looked down upon, and at the time, they are often judged personally by the way we judge the said position.  This is a tremendous injustice to the soul of the person.

Think of it this way...many famous contributors of "big things" in your way of life, started out with nothing but the courage to do what they had to do for work, and they had the heart to keep their self esteem alive while struggling in a role that we may see as less than fitting of our standards.

Think back to a time that you "survived" on your way to where ever you are right now.  Look back and recall how you felt then, and how you feel now about that time.  Are you not a better person for having that chapter to remind you of what it takes to work hard?

Rather than being judgemental, we need to remember that on some parallel, We have Been there...We have Done that... and so, we should Respect it.

Good morning, See you There.
Pierre Couturier

Monday, March 28, 2011

Awaken Your Day - Mar 29, 2011 - Share Your Thanks

"Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it."
- William Arthur Ward

How do we usually feel when we let that guy in to our lane when we are in tight traffic, and in return we get a big old nothing to acknowledge our gesture?
Not the typical little wave of thanks.
Not the tap of the brake lites.
Not the wave out the window.

Now pick that situation up...like a puzzle you made on the table, and lay it down over any example of where someone makes a courteous gesture for you, and you fail to acknowledge it.

Held the elevator. Service with a smile. A "certainly" on your request over the phone.

Simple things become memorable moments if we just take the time to express our gratitude. Make it a habit, and watch it grow.

The Best of My Day is Calling.
Good Morning.
Pierre Couturier Husband, Da-Dee, Author, and Friend

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Awaken Your Day- Mar 28 2011 - Opportunity Knocking

"There is nothing like returning to a place that remains unchanged to find the ways in which you yourself have altered."
- Nelson Mandela

Here we are again. A place you are familiar with. Monday morning.

You have a choice.
Follow the stereotype and create that which you dread the most; Whine and moan; Shade in the expected dark cloud; And find excuses for lack of energy. Essentially...blame blame blame.

Or.... Change your perspective, and your vantage point. Take the wheel. Sound the alarm.
Opportunity Monday is coming, and you are revising the Manual.
"Chapter One - It is a great beginning to an exceptional week."
Good Morning.

Pierre Couturier

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Awaken Your Day - Mar 27, 2011 - Leading Made Easy

"If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more, and become more, you are a leader."
- John Quincy Adams

A certificate is not required.
Not a licence.
Certainly not a degree.

Fact is, it is not necessary for you to take any special training, in order to lead by example. That kind of leadership, comes easier than you think.
Enjoy all that you are, put your enjoyment of your life on display in your actions, and others will be influenced by you.
The reward, and your "certificate" comes ... when they follow your lead, and become a leader themselves.

Good morning, good day.
Pierre Couturier
Husband, Da...Dee, Author, and Friend

Friday, March 25, 2011

Awaken Your Day - March 26, 2011 - Don't Give Up

"Just don't give up trying to do what you really want to do. Where there's love and inspiration, I don't think you can go wrong."
- Ella Fitzgerald, Jazz Singer

I heard a voice today. A little old friend, whispering in the back of my mind. It has been around alot lately...I think just trying to get reacquainted. Trying to rebuild my trust in the message I used to hear so clearly, but for awhile have not felt burning within.

I believe the voice we sometimes hear in our heart and mind is not our unfinished dreams tormenting us for failing, but rather, our still potential dreams trying to save us from the torment promised, by the fear of failing.

If you have stepped away from an idea, or a passion that once burned very bright within in you, then I urge you to set aside some time to revisit this light, and fall in love with an idea once again. Take a moment to retrace some past steps you achieved...and you may just find a new energy is born for your already existing passion.

Good Morning.

Pierre Couturier
Husband, "Da..deee", Author and Friend