Honoring Zig Ziglar: “Avoid Stinkin’ Thinkin’…Cultivate an Attitude of Gratitude”

“We all need a daily check up from the neck up to avoid stinkin’ thinkin,’
which ultimately leads to hardening of the attitudes.”

Meeting Zig Ziglar for the the first time in 1988 at the National Speakers Association Convention. Zig Ziglar and Mary Marcdante

The first time I heard the idea of “stinkin’ thinkin’” roll off the tongue of incomparable motivational speaker Zig Ziglar, I laughed and nodded and saw the faces of so many people I knew flash through my mind’s eyes. Little did I know I was beginning a lifelong adventure into breaking open and transforming my own stinkin’ thinkin’ about others, and more insidiously, myself.

Zig passed away today at the age of 86. What a gracious and inspiring human being who shaped so many industries, businesses, and individuals through his daily commitment to lifelong self-improvement.

For the past twenty-four years  since being awestruck when meeting him for the first time at a National Speakers Association convention, his perspective on having a positive attitude, being grateful, and living and giving with enthusiasm, has lived in the background of my work. Continue reading

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Inspired Action: Finding a Way Out of 9/11 Despair

City of Chula Vista 9/11 Memorial 2010

It’s a grey, overcast day here in San Diego today, intensifying the memories of 9/11 that exploded into our lives 11 years ago and the transformative power of inspired action:

My book My Mother, My Friend had just been released a few months prior to 9/11. In the middle of a national speaking and book tour, I just happened to be home between speaking engagements that morning.  I was on my way to the gym at 6:30 am when I heard the news on the car radio. As the day wore on I wondered how people who were directly affected would cope if I felt as scared and confused as I did 3000 miles away.

The human spirit is incredibly resilient. Three days later I received an email from a colleague who shared an open letter to the world from her friend and mother Debby Borza, who lost her daughter Deora Bodley on United Flight 93.

In honor of 9/11 mothers and families, and all who lost their lives, below is an excerpt from that letter. A link to the entire letter is at the end of this post.

My daughter made a difference everywhere she went. Let this then be our call: To live our lives in such a way that makes the biggest difference possible in the lives or our fellow man, with no one left out. No one! Let her light shine brightly for all people for all time!” ~ Debby Borza

Finding a way out of despair can be one of the most challenging things we ever face in our lives. Debby is such an inspiring example of transforming tremendous loss into love in action that can lead people through the darkest of times into a new normal that opens the door to a deeper appreciation and expression of giving and receiving love.

Expressing your love enthusiastically through your presence — your smile, your eyes, your hugs, your words, and actions — is one of the greatest gifts you give another. Stretch yourself in the next 24 hours and take the time to show your love a little more enthusiastically than normal to someone else. They may need it more than you know. You might too.

Read the original letter and 9/11 10th anniversary post at “When Lives Change in an Instant.”


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Inspiring Your Present Moment…

“I see beauty all around, and I’m reminded once again…
Here and now I have all that I need.
Here and now this is where I am meant to be.”
~ Jana Stanfield ~

A sunset walk at Torrey Pines State Beach Reserve this past weekend and Jana Stanfield’s song “Here and Now,” inspired me to create a photo collage for you from my photos. It’s a great way to take an inspiration break at your computer when you make it a desktop background. [Right click on the photo and then click "Set as desktop background."] Enjoy!

Torrey Pines State Beach Reserve - photos (c) MaryMarcdante.com

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