At Home in Hong Kong

I was only nine years old. My father had just accepted a contract to work for three years in Singapore, and telling my best friend goodbye on the night before our departure was wrenching. It was a cold December night as we cried and hugged and exchanged promises that we’d keep in touch forever. Never mind that we fought like cats and competed fiercely since first grade.

Later that night my family of six traveled 45 minutes north from our home in Orem, Utah to Salt Lake City. We stayed in a hotel and arose early for one of the first flights out of the airport headed for Los Angeles. From there, it was a quick vacation in Hawaii, and then a stop in Hong Kong before finally arriving in Singapore.

I only remember a few things from Hong Kong. One was the sights and smells of
Stanley Market, one was buying imitation “Izod” shirts for only a couple bucks on the streets, and one was an experience I never expected and have never forgotten. It was an incident which helped me see that while I might have been brought up in a sort of bubble, I could still feel right at home in a place that couldn’t be stranger to me.

It was daytime and we were walking down a busy city street. Hoards of people hurried by, and all seemed to have black hair. I must have stood out pretty seriously, because even at the young age of nine, I was already taller than most of the men, and my red hair flamed in the sunlight.

How unfamiliar it all was! How out of place I felt! What a strange experience for such a young girl. And then, from across the crowd of hundreds of Orientals, we spotted two young Caucasian men in white shirts and dark jackets. My father cupped his hands around his mouth and bellowed as loud as he could, “Elders!”

I am sure we startled a few locals that stood in the throngs nearby. I smiled at the lack of inhibition my father demonstrated though we were the visitors on “someone else’s turf.” Nevertheless, the two young men turned to us, and with countenances of joy they waved and shouted back across the crowd, “Mem-bers!”

(We each referred to each others’ apparent affiliation with the Mormon church)

I think back at how amusing that was to me; how the missionaries knew instantly that we shared the same beliefs. How pleased we were to see them, and how joyful they were to see us.

It was a wonderful reunion for strangers that had never met. The light in their eyes shone just as brightly as if each one of them were Alma, who “did rejoice exceedingly to see his brethren; and what added more to his joy, they were still his brethren in the Lord.” (Alma 17:12)

We tried to repeat the experience when we visited Australia and saw two young men in suits. However, the ones we yelled at in Perth weren’t missionaries, they must have been businessmen. We laughed at our mistake, and have no idea what the men thought of us.

Instead, we found the camaraderie sought by attending a local ward (congregation) on Sunday. I have since felt just as at home in Indonesia, New York, and every other place I have attended church across the world.

I’m grateful that my experiences as a young child overseas taught me that I don’t have to be at home to feel at home. People who share similar beliefs and values of any background or culture can find that sense of “home” no matter where they are.

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Working with Law, Persistence Necessary?

My good friend Marnie sent the following bit of humor to me because I talk so much about the Laws of Success and how things just work out better when you live in alignment with them. For example, when you’re in the success-law-abiding groove:

  • You find the perfect parking lot when you need it.
  • You obtain the money you need, sometimes from unexpected sources.
  • You meet the right person at the right moment who has the solution to your problem.
  • Serendipitous events happen more regularly, even predictably.

However, it can leave a person wondering whether the laws somehow override the basic fundamental principles of tenacity, and persistence.

After reading the following short story she sent, you decide:

car ladyAfter starting a new diet I altered my drive to work to avoid passing my favorite bakery.

I accidentally drove by the bakery this morning, and as I approached, there in the window were a host of goodies.

I felt this was no accident, so I prayed … “Lord, it’s up to you, if you want me to have any of those delicious goodies, create a parking place for me directly in front of the bakery.”

And sure enough, on the eighth time around the block, there it was! God is so Good!

(“Maxine” is a cartoon character by John Wagner of Hallmark.  She has a fan page at http://www.facebook.com/maxine)

So yes, persistence still may be required, but an understanding of the laws can help you have the tenacity and belief that the persistence will eventually pay off.  Without that guarantee, too many of us would run out of steam, a little too soon.

This woman’s story is also an example showing “You get what you ask for” – even if it isn’t for your good.

So as you choose your goals, take the time to consult your heart / gut instinct / inspiration / spiritual guidance (whatever you want to call it) to find out first if the thing you ask for is for your best and highest good.  When you know that it is, then it’s all the easier to believe you’ll have God’s help in obtaining it.

Without that assurance, your persistence will probably still pay off, but when all is said and done, you just may wish that it hadn’t.

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Crazy Rabbit Hunter

(Don’t miss the frightening images of the photographer below!)

Nearly twenty years ago, my husband and I sat with a mentor who taught us many of the things that were integrated into The Jackrabbit Factor.  In fact, it was one simple analogy that eventually turned into the whole book and ultimately its sequel, Portal to Genius.

At the time he shared it with us, my husband and I were struggling to be entrepreneurs, and had difficulty explaining why we were doing what we were doing.  We kept odd hours, we raced here and there to get things done, which, at the time, weren’t really producing anything.  (Actually, that’s not entirely true… we could pretty well predict about $30/month in revenue, but it was costing us hundreds a month to produce it.)

But we did what we did because we could see a bigger picture.  We could see its long-term potential, and that vision of possibility is what kept us going.

His brief but profound analogy went something like this:

“Have you ever seen a dog chasing a rabbit?”

I didn’t think I ever had, but I was able to imagine it.

He continued, “What if you couldn’t see the rabbit?  What would you think of the dog?”

“I’d think he was crazy.”

“That’s right.  So when people think you’re crazy doing what you do, don’t let it get to you.  They just don’t see your rabbit.”

~~~~~

So to illustrate, I’d like to show you someone else chasing a rabbit.  See if YOU think he’s crazy:

The following pictures were taken by Hans van de Vorst from the Netherlands at the Grand Canyon, Arizona. The descriptions are his own. The identity of the photographer in the photos is unknown.

rhunter1

I was simply stunned seeing this guy standing on this solitary rock in the Grand Canyon. The canyon’s depth is 900 meters here. The rock on the right is next to the canyon and safe. Watching this guy on his thong sandals, with a camera and a tripod I asked myself 3 questions:

1. How did he climb that rock?

2. Why not take that sunset picture from that rock to the right, which is perfectly safe?

3. How will he get back?

After the sun set behind the canyon’s horizon he packed his things (having only one hand available) and prepared himself for the jump. This took about 2 minutes. At that point he had the full attention of the crowd.

rhunter2

This is the point of no return. After that, he jumped on his thong sandals… The canyon’s depth is 900 meters (3,000 feet) here.

rhunter3

Now you can see that the adjacent rock is higher so he tried to land lower, which is quite steep and tried to use his one hand to grab the rock.

rhunter4

We’ve come to the end of this story. Look carefully at the photographer. He has a camera, a tripod and also a plastic bag, all on his shoulder or in his left hand. Only his right hand is available to grab the rock and the weight of his stuff is a problem. He lands low on his flip flops, both his right hand and right foot slip away…. At that moment I take this shot. He pushes his body against the rock. He waits for a few seconds, throws his stuff on the rock, climbs and walks away. Presumably to a bathroom to change his shorts.

We may never know why this photographer did what he did.  I’d like to see the picture of the view he valued that much.

Likewise, people around you may never understand why you do what you do.  But it doesn’t matter – don’t let it bother you.  They just don’t see your rabbit.

Follow-up to this post:

One of my subscribers knew more about this scenario than I did (thanks, Monique!) and pointed out that this crazy rabbit-hunter had more knowledge than we do as onlookers.  There is always another way to look at something – and our perspective or paradigms will influence the way we feel about it.

If you are the rabbit-chaser, you have more knowledge about what you’re doing than those who watch you, and you’ll naturally feel differently than they do about it.

Avid rabbit-chaser regularly do things that have a greater perceived danger than is actually present.

View the final picture in this story HERE.

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FTMF private Q/A Blitz – coming soon!

Leslie takes your questions

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