Little Lessons

Don’t Fear the Four-Letter Word

Posted by Mark Fallon

Jul 26, 2019 5:01:00 AM


love sign

"Wherever you go, go with all your heart." – Confucius

Last week, a couple of my friends were having a tough time. One was facing a health scare, and the other’s mother passed away. We shared some long phone conversations. Each call ended with “I love you, brother.” And the response – “I love you too”.

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Topics: inspiration, love, learning, support, growth, happiness, joy, little lessons, kindness, father, parents, compassion

Mind over Matter

Posted by Mark Fallon

Jun 21, 2019 5:01:00 AM

rhodoroot
“Give me a place to stand on and I can move the Earth.” – Archimedes

Once upon a time, I was young and strong.

Throughout high school, and part of college, I worked summers as a landscaper. My boss loved to give me the hardest jobs, because he knew I wanted to be challenged. Dig a hole 6 feet by six feet by six feet – with only a shovel and pickax. Move truckloads of wood mulch with a wheelbarrow. Rip out a tree stump without any power tools.

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Topics: strength, improvement, networking, hard work, reading list, Reading and Books, growth, groups, challenge, little lessons

Growth is Uncomfortable

Posted by Mark Fallon

Apr 26, 2019 5:01:00 AM

The_Bench
“So goes discovery: unless you know your own ignorance, you won’t recognize when something truly novel is right before your eyes.” – Nick Pyenson

I don’t know anyone with fond memories of their adolescence. For most of us, it was a period of uncomfortable change. Our bodies transforming into young adults while struggling with new social structures and relationships. But we didn’t have a choice – we could only grow through change.

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Topics: improvement, goals, change, learning, growth, challenge, little lessons, help

Old Dog, New Shoes

Posted by Mark Fallon

Jan 25, 2019 5:01:00 AM

slippers
"The purpose of learning is growth, and our minds, unlike our bodies, can continue growing as we continue to live” – Mortimer Adler

For decades, I’ve disdained slippers. They seemed like an unnecessary piece of clothing. Either I wore shoes – dress shoes, work boots, running shoes – or I went barefoot. Having something “in between” would just take up more room in my closet.

My outlook changed with my hip surgery last summer. In addition to needing a cane, I would have difficulty bending over for weeks. That would make tying my shoes a challenge. Walking barefoot wasn’t recommended, so I had to find slip-on shoes – slippers.

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Topics: change, Reading and Books, fear, growth, little lessons, expectations

Growth is Essential

Posted by Mark Fallon

Aug 24, 2018 5:01:00 AM

zinnia
“We know what we are, but know not what we may be.” - William Shakespeare

The best part of my morning walks is passing by the flower beds and gardens in the neighborhood. There are neatly arranged plots with perfectly balanced layouts of size and color. Stunning wildflower gardens that look like something a poet would describe at the edge of a meadow. Ancient rose bushes that have entangled themselves so tightly around fences, it’s impossible to know where plant ends, and post begins. And the occasional single flowering plant, adding a splash of color in the midst of a green lawn.
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Topics: growth, challenge

Self-Improvement and Self-Acceptance – 2 Sides of the Same Coin

Posted by Mark Fallon

Jul 27, 2018 5:01:00 AM

maine_bay

“Remember, you have been criticizing yourself for years and it hasn't worked. Try approving of yourself and see what happens.” – Louise L. Hay

Readers of this blog understand my commitment to life-long self-improvement. Whether it’s expanding my knowledge through reading books, or my past efforts as a runner, or my current rehabilitation  after surgery. More importantly, through the lessons and love shared by friends, I try to become better at providing support and understanding for the people in my life.

I also accept being me – just as I am.

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Topics: love, support, growth, little lessons

Removing Our Blinders

Posted by Mark Fallon

Apr 6, 2018 5:01:00 AM

Horse Blinders

“We don't see things as they are; we see them as we are.” – Anais Nin

I enjoy joining groups, but I despise being put into a category. Using randomly chosen years to create “generations” splits us into “Baby Boomers” or “Gen-X” or “Millennials”. Or worse, assigning different values to someone because they happen to live in a city, or suburb or farming community. Other people want to use personality tests to assign us a color or letter profile. We’re humans, and not books to be categorized by the Dewey Decimal System.

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Topics: reflection, learning, growth, listen, challenge

The Worst Kind of Ignorance

Posted by Mark Fallon

Mar 23, 2018 5:01:00 AM

Rez Life.jpg

“The greatest obstacle to discovery is not ignorance - it is the illusion of knowledge.” – Daniel Boorstin

I try to be an educated person. Not just by the degrees I attained in college and graduate school, but by constant reading – books, magazines and varied websites. I spend more time on subjects that interest me. For example, I’ve read more than 25 books about or by Theodore Roosevelt. While I may not be an expert, I consider myself well-informed about our 26th President.

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Topics: learning, growth

Focus, Not Limits

Posted by Mark Fallon

Sep 29, 2017 5:00:00 AM

book.jpg

“An investment in knowledge pays the best interest.” – Benjamin Franklin

I’m currently reading “Life: The Leading Edge of Evolutionary Biology, Genetics, Anthropology, and Environmental Science” (edited by John Brockman). The book is a collection of essays and conversations by scientists on their understanding of life – from evolution to genetics to the origins of life to the probability of life on other planets.

My favorite chapter is the transcript of a panel discussion on the concept of life. What makes the discussion so interesting is the varied points of views - biologists, geneticists, physicists and evolutionary philosophers. While each scientist had a primary field of study, they were also well-versed in a wide spectrum of topics. The physicist had read papers on genetics, and the biologist had studied chemistry, and so on. Their broad understanding of multiple subjects supplemented their specific fields.

We can learn from their habits. Too often, we allow our focus to become too narrow. Instead of improving our expertise in an area, our self-imposed limits stunt our growth – professionally and personally.

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Topics: friendship, Reading and Books, learning, communicate, growth

Your Standards for You

Posted by Mark Fallon

Mar 10, 2017 4:32:00 AM

“Everybody makes excuses for themselves they wouldn't be prepared to make for other people.” – Rebecca Goldstein

Long_mirror.jpgReading the news, we’re outraged at the justifications some famous person used to defend their actions. A coworker at the office trotted out another flimsy pretext for being late with an assignment. And someone else wants us to overlook their bad behavior – once again. It’s so frustrating.

It’s easy to see the faults in others. Their shortcomings are glaring examples of how not to behave. We don’t understand why people aren’t better. Of course, the view through a window is clearer than what we might see in the mirror.

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Topics: improvement, growth, honesty