Lessons from a Recovering Doormat

Today is Veteran’s Day, when we honor the men and women, past and present, who gave their time, service and sometimes their lives to protect our country. While I don’t agree with why we went to war in Iraq, I completely, with all my heart, support our brave troops. My dad was a very proud Lt. Colonel in the army. When he went back to civilian life, he remained in the army reserves, putting in time each year until he retired. When he passed away, he was buried in full uniform and had a military funeral.

So I’m happy to be able to do something in honor of Veteran’s Day. This post is a call for support for our troops. I’ve been a fan of Operation Gratitude for a few years. They send care packages to our troops. Carolyn Blashek, who orchestrates this wonderful organization, sent out a call for help today. I told her that I’d reprint some of it here. She also asked for people to write letters to the troops. They have a Letter Writing Contest. Our troops get lonely and letters help too!

Please forward this link to anyone who might care about helping our troops. If you have a church that might want to get involved, refer them to the Operation Gratitude website. If anyone wants the whole letter, just ask and I’ll forward it. So in honor of our veterans, here’s a condensed version of what Carolyn sent:

Dear Friends of Operation Gratitude,
Today, an absolutely amazing individual sent me a follow-up to a story I shared with you last year. His letter speaks far more profoundly than anything I could write. On September 26, 2007 he wrote:

HI Carolyn, Our unit will be leaving Iraq in a few weeks. I just wanted to thank you for your support of all soldiers over here. Your care packages helped lift morale here greatly and you should know you helped save the life of a young soldier.

We had a soldier who never got mail, care packages, or anything. He did not have much family and as it turns out was planning on committing suicide on Christmas, but because that soldier received your care package it was like a Christmas gift. It made the soldier change his mind. The soldier now writes letters and emails to folks whose names were in the box and the soldier’s attitude and outlook on life has really improved. This is not a story–it is true.

We found out when the soldier finally opened up and talked to the Chain of Command about what was going thru his mind and got help for his depression. Your care package made a major difference in a human life. Because of your organization, one less family received terrible news at Christmas time. This has been my third deployment here and I remember how on my first deployment, I almost never got mail and then received a care package from your group. It made me feel much better about being separated from my loved ones.” V/R, SFC J.S.

Today, he simply wanted to send me a brief update and ask again if there is anything he could do to help:

Hello Carolyn, It has been quite a while but I thought I would update you on the soldier whose life was saved by an Operation Gratitude care package. His work attitude and leadership skills have so improved that he has since been promoted to Sergeant and is currently a squad leader and “one of the best” in the platoon he is assigned to, I am told by his platoon sergeant. He has a steady girlfriend and just recently re-enlisted. If you had taken this soldier over a year ago and put him next to the soldier he has become you would swear it was two different people. And it was all due to a care package sent to a soldier by good people back in the states that he had never met before.

Please let everybody there know. As for me, I am leaving the service. Unfortunately, I had a run in with an IED that has ended my military career and left me pretty banged and burned up. I have been in recovery and had a few reconstructive surgeries over the last months. I only have three days left in service. Please continue helping those still over there and going over there. I know we are old news and a lot of folks back home are tired of the news there, but it is important that we not forget those who still serve. We have to remember and support them “until everyone comes home.”

Especially on this Veteran’s Day, now is the time to express our appreciation to the men and women of our Military who stand strong and stand guard to ensure our freedoms here at home and to promote the ideals of democracy around the world. Now is the time that you, too, can be part of their effort by supporting them on the front lines:

Thank you so much for your care packages and the inspiring words of support, faith, and encouragement you so graciously and lovingly put together and sent to our team in Afghanistan. It really does make a difference to us over here. As service members, we are called upon to leave behind family, friends, and the comfort of our homes to support our nation. Because we have so much, we also will sacrifice to give to those less fortunate. Some mistakenly believe people serve in the military because we love war; what they don’t realize is most of us serve because we love and cherish liberty and freedom and want everyone in the world to enjoy the same as we have in America. God bless you.” Sergeant C.S. and the whole ANA COMM ETT (Afghan National Army Communications Embedded Training Team)

Operation Gratitude is facing its most challenging year since its inception in 2003. Right now, 75% of the 70,000 Care Packages we wi
ll assemble for our troops will not reach them without your help. While our Corporate Product Donors have generously provided all the items we need for our care packages, our financial donations have dwindled to a trickle. Yet, our shipping expenses are higher than ever before at $9.30 for postage alone and more than $10 per package overall.

All donated funds are used for production and shipping expenses. We do not expend funds on overhead, fundraising campaigns, direct mail or advertising. We take no salaries. Every dollar donated directly supports our troops. Operation Gratitude sends a care package personally addressed to every deployed service member whose name we receive. We send 100,000–120,000 packages per year, which requires a cash budget of $1.2 Million/year. This Holiday Drive, we will assemble 70,000 care packages. Right now, we only have the funds to ship one-quarter of them.

We had a tip from an Iraqi child that we gave one of your beanie babies to, who let us know that bad people were making bombs in his neighborhood. The information he gave us led to a major terrorist cell being captured and countless lives being saved. You may not realize this, but we utilize everything you send–we do not waste a thing. Thanks again for what you do.” Captain D.A. US Air Force”

Nothing would be sadder than to have more than 50,000 fabulously full and completed care packages still sitting in our warehouse on Christmas Day. Fifty thousand Care Packages lovingly assembled by our dedicated volunteers that could not be shipped to our troops in Iraq and Afghanistan solely because we did not have the funds for postage. We need your help to raise $500,000.00 this month to ship the care packages in time for the Holidays.

All donations to Operation Gratitude are tax deductible. Donations can be made by Credit Card through the Operation Gratitude website or by check payable to Operation Gratitude and mailed to:
Operation Gratitude
16444 Refugio Road
Encino, CA 91436

Today I urge you to partner with us once again to serve the courageous members of the United States Military, who risk life and limb to serve us. Your tax-deductible contribution during the Holidays will allow us to put smiles on the faces of our bravest Americans during a very difficult time away from home and loved ones. They and we will be forever grateful.

Thank you!
Carolyn Blashek
Operation Gratitude

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This is my thirteenth post in my Monday series on the Law of Attraction in Action, inspired by watching Louise Hay’s You Can Heal Your Life, the movie, expanded version. You can find the other posts at the end of this article.

I want to talk more about using the Law of Attraction to attract miracles to you. Last week, my post, Law of Attraction in Action: Miracles Part 1, discussed the first phrase in the Prayer of Jabez by Bruce Wilkinson (Multnomah Publishers). The 4 part prayer says:

“Oh, that You would bless me indeed, and enlarge my territory, that Your hand would be with me, and that You would keep me from evil, that I may not cause pain.”

I explained how the interpretation of “bless me indeed” is to ask for lots. The more you put out, the more you get back. God wants you to have miracles but you must be clear about exactly what you want. And ask for it. And affirm that you have it. And truly expect it. The more miracles you get, the easier it becomes to expect more. I know, because I’ve had so many and keep having them.

As you manifest miracles, also focus on doing what you can to help others as the second part of the prayer—“and enlarge my territory”—states.

Wilkinson explains that “enlarge my territory” means to find ways to do good things for other people. Using that part of the prayer is asking God how you can serve Him. How can you give back? How can you make someone’s life better? Giving of yourself to help others attracts a lot more goodies to you. I get so many blessings from people and try to help others whenever I can. Some of what comes back to me is truly miraculous!

What I get may not be from the same people I helped. The Law of Attraction isn’t an equal bartering system.

I’m kind to someone and someone else is kind to me. If someone I help then asks what they can do for me in return, I usually suggest passing on the kindness to someone in need. I’ll get mine when I need it. Whenever I need help with something, someone is there. All my websites have been built by people I didn’t know well yet who offered to do it for free! Kindness abounds in my world! People send me free products. I may never have to buy certain items I use regularly because I get so much free stuff. Just last weekend I went out for coffee and told the manager how much I love their hazelnut coffee. A few minutes later, he came back with 3 packages of it in a bag—because I’m a nice person he said!

After living in my DoorMat world of users and takers, I now create a loving world of kindness, generosity, and miracles. YOU can create a lovely world amidst the chaos of the bigger picture of our world—IF you CHOOSE to!

Be vigilant about how you can help people. If you’re concerned about offering to do something you may not be able to do, remember the third part of the prayer—“that Your hand would be with me.” You’ve probably heard it before but may not have quite believed it. If God brings something that you want to do but have doubts about—whether it’s volunteering to do a tough job, a big career opportunity, trying something you’ve never done before, etc.—He will be there for the outcome to support you.

The key is clearly asking for and expecting the help. Then let Law of Attraction do its work!

Fretting about what you need to do and expecting not to be able to do it sends a message of doubt. The Law of Attraction will support that doubt. Then you’ll be even more sure in the future that you won’t get support or can’t accomplish things. Counterproductive Alert! The Law of Attraction doesn’t dig into your psyche to see what you really want. It brings you back what you expect.

So EXPECT the support you need to get something done well when you take on something. God’s hand will be there with you!

When my book How to Please a Woman In & Out of Bed came out, a friend said, “You have to get on Howard Stern’s radio show.” Yes, I decided I did have to. I put it out as a serious intention. Told people, even on a TV interview, that I’d be on the show within 3 weeks. I was truly sure! When I told the publicist at my publisher my intention, she laughed, asked how I’d do it and then warned me not to get my hopes up as she’d never gotten one of her authors on. I laughed back and said I’d be the first.

Still, she was stunned to call me 3 weeks later to say the show had called to book me. I’d done nothing other than put out my intentions, and make sure the publicist sent a book to the producer.

I was fine until the night before the show. Friends advised me to listen to it beforehand to prepare myself for Howard’s nastiness and jabs. I replied that I didn’t need to, since I expected to be treated well! “Oh yeah, right. Howard Stern will be nice to you. Dream on!” The night before, as I went to sleep, I got nervous. It hit me that I’d be on Howard Stern! What if he was mean to me or tried to embarrass me? I picked up a spiritual book I read from often and opened to a random page. I know that it was no accident. I was meant to open to that spot.

It said that if God causes something to happen, He will be there for the effect too.

I knew where the message came from and fell asleep quickly and calmly. The show didn’t just go well. People asked if I’d hypnotized Howard since they’d never heard him be so nice to any other guest. He did get sleazy. After all, he’s Howard Stern. I rolled with his jokes. But he kept me on for 35 commercial-free minutes, gave my website several times, and kept saying that I made a lot of sense and people should buy my book. I knew all of this happened from EXPECTING to have a satisfying experience and The Law of Attraction fulfilled my expectation.

When you KNOW that you have God’s support, God KNOWS what you need and provides. My appearance on Howard Stern’s show was truly a miracle!

I read Prayer of Jabez just before 9/11. Right after my city was attacked, I knew I had to do something to help. I discovered that they needed many laptops to input the names of the missing people and try to track them. I sent out an email to everyone I knew asking for donated laptops. People forwarded it to others and I began hearing from heads of major corporations—IBM, Time Warner, Intel, and more—all wanting to help and not knowing how. I compiled a list of all the people and notified the 9/11 Fund about it. They asked me to keep it for when they needed it. Soon I became the go-to person for Ground Zero IT needs.

That Saturday, I heard from a VP at Time Warner. She’d been given my name as that go-to person and explained the National Guard needed walkie-talkies at Ground Zero. I explained I’m a writer and had limited contacts. She was Time Warner! But she insisted they needed me to get them. Okay I said. Since it was Saturday, none of the people on the list I’d compiled were available. I didn’t know what to do but kept trying. Then I heard from a head honcho at HBO who was volunteering with the National Guard. They desperately needed the walkie-talkies. What could I do?

I talked to God, saying the prayer and reminding Him that He’d gotten me into this and I now needed His hand in finding the walkie-talkies.

It was after 6PM on a Saturday. I had no one left to call. But all of a sudden I got out the Yellow Pages without thinking about it. I found stores that had walkie-talkies. The first one I called was closed. So I said the Prayer of Jabez, told God I was counting on Him and “randomly” called a second. They too were closed, BUT, there was a message and a phone number to call if this was related to 9/11. I called and the guy provided the walkie-talkies. Incidents like this happened more times as I continued to be asked for stuff to help at Ground Zero. They were nothing short of miracles!

Ask how you can serve and keep your eyes open for where you’re needed. You’ll get the help you need to get through, and helping others—when you can, not by sacrificing your own needs—will come back to you with miracles.

If you enjoyed my post, please leave a comment and/or click on the bookmark and write a short review at some of the sites, especially Stumbleupon and Digg. Thanks!

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Law of Attraction in Action Series

Law of Attraction in Action: Concrete Use of This Power
Law of Attraction in Action: Service People
Law of Attraction in Action: Kindness
Law of Attraction in Action: Easing Your Way to Joy
Law of Attraction in Action: Smiling in Your Mirror of Other People
Law of Attraction in Action: Age
Law of Attraction in Action: Who Are You?
Law of Attraction in Action: Revenge
Law of Attraction in Action: Too Blessed to Be Stressed
Law of Attraction in Action: Recovering Your Health

Law of Attraction in Action: Respect
Law of Attraction in Action: Miracles Part 1

Okay, I’m being somewhat facetious about the title of this post. But there’s some truth in it! For most of my life I’ve hated walking down the streets of NYC and having to endure whistles and loud comments about me or my body. Construction workers, delivery guys on bikes, and occasionally some other guy had to yell something about a body part or two, or make a general “hey baby, looking good.”

I admit to having a curvy body. In proportion. Some call it an hourglass figure. I’ve always gotten some attention when I walk down the street.

Usually I hate it. “I want to get into your pants” has especially gotten my blood boiling. Being a walk-a-holic, I found comments and whistles distracting to my pleasure in hoofing it around NYC—an intrusion; a distraction from my exercise flow. I power walk and get into a rhythm that gets broken by these annoying men. So I got in the habit of walking with blinders on—looking straight ahead and ignoring any side affects.

I still see myself as hot and sexy yet getting older, especially in a city like NY, can make even a confident girl question if others still think she’s got it.

I recently had a birthday. While I feel great about me, it is a fact that as women age, they’re not considered as appealing as younger ones. I do still feel VERY appealing. Being confident, happy and whole makes me feel like I’m the best I’ve ever been. I run 3 or 4 times a week in Central Park and work out with weights with a personal trainer. I didn’t do either until 5 years ago. But, messages about older women losing their hotness can make a girl wonder if other people appreciate the attractive and sexy woman I know I am.

I’ve loosened my blinders as I walk down the street. Right after my birthday I sped past a group of guys in hard hats and heard the familiar catcalls I used to block out:

* “Oh baby!”
* “Nice!”
* “Shake it honey.”

And I smiled after I was out of their vision.

Since then, my blinders came off more. I noticed appreciative looks from men I pass. Even guys in cars at a light give me the up and down once-over and smile or comment. While I still don’t like men yelling to me on the street, my initial “Grrrr…” reaction to it has changed somewhat. I’ve noticed that lately I also smile when guys look me over with a smile. I’m more amused than annoyed about it these days. Hmmm.. am I going soft. NO!

It feels almost like a validation of my belief that people are SOOOOOO WRONG about women losing their appeal as they get older!

I do know I’ve still got it. Yet I also remember what I’ve heard said about older women and smile, because each whistle and catcall is an unbiased affirmation that people are wrong. I don’t consider myself a cougar. I’m just me! It feels good to have the kind of confidence I do, since so many women, even many younger than me, think they’re getting used up when they approach or reach 40.

These construction workers and other men on the street affirm that a woman who takes care of herself feels and looks good, and gets whistled at.

Age doesn’t determine when you’re over the hill. YOU determine that. I’m still the same woman I was at a younger age. Actually, I’m better, because my confidence is much stronger and I do more to keep my body healthy and fit. I was attractive when I was a DoorMat, but didn’t appreciate it then. I was also thinner. Yet I didn’t put much time into keeping myself looking as good as possible. Why bother? Back then, I saw myself unworthy of nice clothing or good skin care products.

Now I love looking my best because I love me! And as other women stress about getting older, I revel in getting better.

It’s fun to get the admiration I know I deserve, even as my age continues to increase. I won’t deny my body is changing and while I don’t look my age, I don’t look 20 anymore. But, that doesn’t take away from who I am today. A friend pointed out that the main reason I get attention when I walk down the street is because I walk straight, shoulders back, head held high and exude confidence.

Confidence transcends age. It’s attractive no matter how young or old you are!

We can rock at all ages! While men on the street will continue to annoy me with their unasked for attention, I’ll probably hang a smile in my annoyance. But unlike some women who feel like they’re losing it as they age and thinking, “Wow, I must be lucky that anyone whistles anymore,” I think, “Damn, I’m still good and it’s nice that others appreciate that too!”

So don’t place yourself over the hill. Stay on the bright side of it. You’re still the same person you’ve been, even if the packaging is wearing out a little. Embrace who you are and do your best to be your best at the age you are now. Then wear the confidence it brings and see how much more attractive you get! ?

If you enjoyed my post, please leave a comment and/or click on the bookmark and write a short review at some of the sites, especially Stumbleupon and Digg. Thanks!

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This is my twelfth post in my Monday series on the Law of Attraction, inspired by watching Louise Hay’s You Can Heal Your Life, the movie, expanded version.

I want to talk about using the Law of Attraction to attract miracles to you. I first learned about the power we have to manifest miracles when I read the Prayer of Jabez by Bruce Wilkinson (Multnomah Publishers). It’s a teeny book explaining the meaning of a 4 part prayer attributed to a little known man named Jabez. Yet his prayer is included in the bible. It’s simple but profound:

Oh, that You would bless me indeed, and enlarge my territory, that Your hand would be with me, and that You would keep me from evil, that I may not cause pain.

When Jabez said that prayer, it was answered. I read the book’s 93 pages in one sitting. I had the benefit of being in Vermont for the weekend to relax, so I sat down in a pretty place in a park and just read it. I didn’t expect to finish it but there aren’t that many words on a page so it went quickly. A quick explanation of the prayer that Wilkinson elaborates on so well in the book is:

“Oh, that you would bless me indeed” This means God wants you to ask for miracles. Lot of them! He wants you to have them! This was emphasized in the book.

“and enlarge my territory” This means you should ask how can you serve God by helping others. I do love to help people so this felt good to read about!

“that Your hand would be with me” This was a fantastic reminder that if God brings you something you must do, He’ll be there with you to help you get through it.

“and that You would keep me from evil, that I may not cause pain.” This means protect me from being tempted to commit a sin.

This prayer blew me away and got me thinking. When I read the second line, I wondered how I could help someone. There was a couple a few feet away taking pictures of each other against the scenery. So I asked if they’d like me to take one of them together. They were thrilled and explained they’d wanted to ask but didn’t want to disturb me since I seemed so engrossed in my book. So I found a way to help right away!

I was most intrigued by “Oh, that you would bless me indeed” Indeed! Wilkinson explains that God wants us to ask for miracles. Lots of them! After all, if you don’t ask, how can God know what you want? I’ve always expected good things but never thought about it in terms of miracles before. What a lovely thought, that God wants us to have miracles! Since then I realized it’s true, because I’ve had many! Since reading the book I’ve been more focused on asking for and expecting miracles.

It doesn’t matter how unlikely it seems. When you expect miracles, they happen!

One incident continues to remind me that miracles come to those who expect them. I did a 3-month book tour for my last music business book and drove around the US, 10,500 miles, by myself. My New Orleans and Mississippi appearances were canceled due to Katrina, which meant I had a week free before my next events in Atlanta, so I booked a flight to NY to take a break. I had to drive from Mississippi to Atlanta for my 9:30 PM flight. I thought I had plenty of time as I had a late lunch in Mississippi until the waitress reminded me that I’d lose an hour in Georgia, and I’d go through Birmingham during rush hour.

I looked at my AAA triptik and realized they’d left out 2 pages. Birmingham and getting to it were missing so I’d really misjudged the timing! The waitress was sure I wouldn’t make my flight. I hurried back on the road. I did have bad traffic near Birmingham and also many pockets of construction. Driving, I began to panic. I knew I needed to get to the hotel I was staying in when I returned to Atlanta (they were letting me leave the car there) by 8, in order to pre-check in and then have time to wait for their bus to the airport. It was 6:30 and it looked like I had at least 2 more hours to drive. Then I saw more construction delays. I began to think that it would be impossible to make my flight.

As the thought came to me, I shouted, “NO! I HAVE TO make the flight!” I asked God for a miracle, promising I wouldn’t look at my watch until I get there, and put myself and my drive in His hands.

I didn’t check the time again as I drove and drove. I was curious to know how much time I had but kept my promise. I talked to God and explained that I knew if I didn’t see the time, He could do the miracle work without my seeing how it happened. The rest of my trip, I continued affirming that I had to make my flight, and would. There was more construction. Most people would have accepted missing the flight. Not me! As I pulled into a spot at the hotel parking lot, I screamed to see it was 8:05.

I don’t know how it happened. It really was impossible to go the distance I did, in the traffic I had, in an hour and a half. But there I was at the hotel on time.

They checked me in fast. The airport bus was waiting for me. With a little rushing, I made my flight! I have no idea how I got there on a logical level. There hadn’t been enough time. But miracles aren’t logical. You have to ask for them in strong faith, like I did. I was excited as I expected my miracle. Others would have been skeptical. Skeptical attracts negative results. The Law of Attraction reads skeptical as not expecting the miracle. But when you open your heart to a miracle in good faith, it can happen.

Start asking for miracles. If you can’t bring yourself to ask in total faith, ask for support in believing that it can happen.

It’s normal to have doubts. Instead of fighting them, acknowledge them and also acknowledge that you’d like help with getting past them since you want miracles. Start with small ones. As miracles occur, your faith will grow. Life with miracles is lovelier than life without them! Ask and ye shall receive.

Next week I’ll do another post about the Prayer of Jabez and miracles. Read it here.

If you enjoyed my post, please leave a commen
t and/or click on the bookmark and write a short review at some of the sites, especially Stumbleupon and Digg. Thanks!

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