Monday, November 24, 2014

Perspective And .......

Perspective has been a theme in my mind lately as I go through Facebook, Twitter, and Entheos. The Thanksgiving and Christmas seasons truly require us to see life from other perspectives.  As an advent of sorts, I will be building up to Christmas reflecting on the importance that our perspective plays into how we treat each other. I truly believe that with a clear, literally a clear, perspective on where we fit into this thing called the human race life can be more JOYful for others we encounter and ourselves. This week's lesson in church nailed it for me; how are we helping others who appear less fortunate, less able, different, etc.
What is your perspective? Do you have all the information? A lot of times we don't have all the right information and we jump to conclusions. We judge on what we see without stepping back and trying to see from the other side of a situation. When dealing with children I believe that happens quite often and as adults we get caught up in 'how things should be'. 
When you see a child behaving 'inappropriately' what do you think as you walk by?
Is that child having fun or is it a tantrum? If it is a tantrum, what is really happening? Before we judge others, STOP & remember we aren't here to judge others. 
When you see someone begging for food or money, what are you thinking inside?
Do you stoically walk by? Give a glare?

Some people just need a little compassion. 
Be that person who offers compassion before it is offered to you.
Another view: Are all the people in this photo having fun?

Answer and the 'Rest of the Story' in the next post.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

playmaker or Playmaker, It's All In The Letters - Starting with YOU

I love being a Playmaker!! In getting to that statement, I have JOYfuly reflected about titles. 

In 1999 I became a 'Husband'
In 2000 I was a classroom 'Teacher'.
In 2004 I became a 'Father' and somewhere between now & then I became 'Dad'
In 2009 I was called the 'President' of my own company to create play opportunities for the disabled.
During this entrepreneurial learning curve some called me an 'Omega Leader'

Titles are crazy things aren't they?! They can be intimidating, overwhelming, made up, real, earned, and created. Depending on the path we choose in life. 

In 2012 I was introduced to the Playmaker movement and it spoke to my soul. SIMPLE and DEEP lessons, invitations, activities, and opportunities to support others through a PLAYFUL approach to whatever life brings our way. It spoke to me about responding versus reacting, pivoting versus staying stuck, actively engaging with children and people in our lives versus maintaining a 'safe' distance both physically and emotionally. 

Because I am who I am, and the way I am wired, I have a hard time accepting almost all the titles I listed above. They never really fit.  I never quite lived up to the billing that comes with these titles or in the case of being a classroom teacher I felt I was created to go beyond the building that employed me (that's a conversation for another day). It's an inside/gut thing.

Even being a 'certified Playmaker' didn't sound right because I believe the trainers for the Life Is Good Playmakers are TREMENDOUS and in tune with their JOY centers. I am still getting there. 

It's a journey you know.

Now, if you look up playmaker in the dictionary you will see it defined as 'one who executes plays designed to put one or more teammates in a position to score.' Hmmm, isn't that great to think about?Am I, aren't you, someone who wants to help fellow humans, both young and old, to be in a position to succeed?

Heck YA!

So, yes I am a playmaker and I am looking for other playmakers who believe in putting others in a position to succeed in life. 

Am I a Playmaker or a playmaker? I can proudly say I am both and refuse to choose. I promote and practice both roles in my life as a JOYful Maverick and hopefully I am a JOYful Compass who, as a playmaker, playfully leads others to a more JOYful life by the way I live and the work I do. The Playmakers are doing some wonderful work in Haiti and coined term 'Gerye Jwa', loosely translated JOYful Warrior. 

Ready to lead a more Playful JOYfilled life by being a playmaker & Gerye Jwa? 

Let's Play.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Speaking Volumes, Yet No Is Listening

Keep Hanging On
Looking for a leadership style that touches me internally is vital in my JOYful journey. In this search I received a phone call from someone who wanted to change careers and heard about our inclusive unique programs.  Well, long story short, she asked to interview for a position and I informed her that we don't interview in the traditional sense of the word.  "You are welcome to come play and in that process we will both decide if we can work together as adults," 
After working together for a couple of years she moved and gave me one of her favorite books and the fun frisbee you see here. In that book she signed it, "Thank you for being an "Omega Leader". 

Can you say intimidated?! I did not see myself as a leader and I would not use the word 'Omega' to describe myself. A balanced leader who uses both the Alpha and Beta leadership styles? Well, I read that book, Jesus,CEO by Laurie Beth Jones, and loved what it said to me. Here I was looking for a leadership style and here He was right next to me since I was an infant, the ultimate loving leader.

Time passed and I was blessed to meet another wonderful person who helped me accept the fact that I am helping others even when I am merely doing what I do and doing what I love - all access, inclusive, loving play groups for all kids AND adults. After many conversations with my pastor around play she returned from a conference with Bishop Jim Hazelwood in which he sent the pastors away with the mandate, "Go Play."  I helped my pastor be more playful? Pastors help and lead their flock and this pastor was following my lead. 

Me, a father of three, caretaker for our grandfather, and husband to a woman who is busting her butt to undo some of the problems that happen to finances when your husband leaves his job to chase a dream. Me, Playmaker in the making, considered by some to be a Playful Leader. Who knew?

Do I love teaching about the value of playfulness? Yes. Do I love mentoring parents around playfulness? Yes. Do I love leading play groups with kids of all ages and abilities? Yes. Can I be a more playful father and husband? YES Do I struggle with my own playfulness? YES. Is it OK? YES.

Yet, since the beginning of time, as we know it, we are being encouraged to simply be more loving, playful, & JOYfilled.
St. Paul dropped an incredible little nugget right in the middle of his message to the Corinthians,
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7 It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
8 Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. 9 For we know in part and we prophesy in part, 10 but when completeness comes, what is in part disappears. 11 When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me. 12 For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.13 And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.
I am by no means a theologian, priest, or pastor so please go to yours and analyze this passage. I like to take it at face value and use it as a beacon that highlights a simple directive,
'Live life more JOYfully.' 

As I beat the drum around the need to simplify, lead with love, and remain playful to live a JOYful life, I look back in time and realize that much more powerful leaders have come before me and the vibe is not being felt at the necessary levels for change. So, what do we do?

Keep throwing those rocks in the ocean of life and magnify the loving vibes that encourage others to lead life focused on JOY.

I leave you with the words from Leonard Sweet's book, The Well Played Life:

and also with you,