A Call to Responsibility; A Call to Action

President Barack Obama’s Inaugural Speech:

My fellow citizens:

I stand here today humbled by the task before us, grateful for the trust you have bestowed, mindful of the sacrifices borne by our ancestors.  I thank President Bush for his service to our nation, as well as the generosity and cooperation he has shown throughout this transition.

Forty-four Americans have now taken the presidential oath.  The words have been spoken during rising tides of prosperity and the still waters of peace.  Yet, every so often the oath is taken amidst gathering clouds and raging storms.

At these moments, America has carried on not simply because of the skill or vision of those in high office, but because We the People have remained faithful to the ideals of our forbearers, and true to our founding documents.

So it has been.  So it must be with this generation of Americans.

That we are in the midst of crisis is now well understood.  Our nation is at war, against a far-reaching network of violence and hatred.  Our economy is badly weakened, a consequence of greed and irresponsibility on the part of some, but also our collective failure to make hard choices and prepare the nation for a new age.

Homes have been lost; jobs shed; businesses shuttered.  Our health care is too costly; our schools fail too many; and each day brings further evidence that the ways we use energy strengthen our adversaries and threaten our planet.

These are the indicators of crisis, subject to data and statistics.  Less measurable but no less profound is a sapping of confidence across our land — a nagging fear that America’s decline is inevitable, and that the next generation must lower its sights.

Today I say to you that the challenges we face are real.  They are serious and they are many.  They will not be met easily or in a short span of time.  But know this, America — they will be met.

On this day, we gather because we have chosen hope over fear, unity of purpose over conflict and discord.

On this day, we come to proclaim an end to the petty grievances and false promises, the recriminations and worn out dogmas, that for far too long have strangled our politics.

We remain a young nation, but in the words of scripture, the time has come to set aside childish things.  The time has come to reaffirm our enduring spirit; to choose our better history; to carry forward that precious gift, that noble idea, passed on from generation to generation:  the God-given promise that all are equal, all are free, and all deserve a chance to pursue their full measure of happiness.

In reaffirming the greatness of our nation, we understand that greatness is never a given.  It must be earned.  Our journey has never been one of short-cuts or settling for less.  It has not been the path for the faint-hearted – for those who prefer leisure over work, or seek only the pleasures of riches and fame.

Rather, it has been the risk-takers, the doers, the makers of things – some celebrated but more often men and women obscure in their labor, who have carried us up the long, rugged path towards prosperity and freedom.

For us, they packed up their few worldly possessions and traveled across oceans in search of a new life.

For us, they toiled in sweatshops and settled the West; endured the lash of the whip and plowed the hard earth.

For us, they fought and died, in places like Concord and Gettysburg; Normandy and Khe Sahn.

Time and again these men and women struggled and sacrificed and worked till their hands were raw so that we might live a better life.  They saw America as bigger than the sum of our individual ambitions; greater than all the differences of birth or wealth or faction.

This is the journey we continue today.  We remain the most prosperous, powerful nation on Earth.  Our workers are no less productive than when this crisis began.  Our minds are no less inventive, our goods and services no less needed than they were last week or last month or last year. Our capacity remains undiminished.

But our time of standing pat, of protecting narrow interests and putting off unpleasant decisions — that time has surely passed.  Starting today, we must pick ourselves up, dust ourselves off, and begin again the work of remaking America.

For everywhere we look, there is work to be done.  The state of the economy calls for action, bold and swift, and we will act — not only to create new jobs, but to lay a new foundation for growth.  We will build the roads and bridges, the electric grids and digital lines that feed our commerce and bind us together.

We will restore science to its rightful place, and wield technology’s wonders to raise health cares quality and lower its cost. We will harness the sun and the winds and the soil to fuel our cars and run our factories.  And we will transform our schools and colleges and universities to meet the demands of a new age. All this we can do. And all this we will do.

Now, there are some who question the scale of our ambitions — who suggest that our system cannot tolerate too many big plans.  Their memories are short.  For they have forgotten what this country has already done; what free men and women can achieve when imagination is joined to common purpose, and necessity to courage.

What the cynics fail to understand is that the ground has shifted beneath them — that the stale political arguments that have consumed us for so long no longer apply.  The question we ask today is not whether our government is too big or too small, but whether it works — whether it helps families find jobs at a decent wage, care they can afford, a retirement that is dignified.

Where the answer is yes, we intend to move forward.  Where the answer is no, programs will end.  And those of us who manage the publics dollars will be held to account — to spend wisely, reform bad habits, and do our business in the light of day — because only then can we restore the vital trust between a people and their government.

Nor is the question before us whether the market is a force for good or ill.  Its power to generate wealth and expand freedom is unmatched, but this crisis has reminded us that without a watchful eye, the market can spin out of control — and that a nation cannot prosper long when it favors only the prosperous.

The success of our economy has always depended not just on the size of our Gross Domestic Product, but on the reach of our prosperity; on our ability to extend opportunity to every willing heart — not out of charity, but because it is the surest route to our common good.

As for our common defense, we reject as false the choice between our safety and our ideals.  Our Founding Fathers, faced with perils we can scarcely imagine, drafted a charter to assure the rule of law and the rights of man, a charter expanded by the blood of generations.

Those ideals still light the world, and we will not give them up for expediences sake.  And so to all other peoples and governments who are watching today, from the grandest capitals to the small village where my father was born:  know that America is a friend of each nation and every man, woman, and child who seeks a future of peace and dignity, and that we are ready to lead once more.

Recall that earlier generations faced down fascism and communism not just with missiles and tanks, but with sturdy alliances and enduring convictions.  They understood that our power alone cannot protect us, nor does it entitle us to do as we please.  Instead, they knew that our power grows through its prudent use; our security emanates from the justness of our cause, the force of our example, the tempering qualities of humility and restraint.

We are the keepers of this legacy.  Guided by these principles once more, we can meet those new threats that demand even greater effort — even greater cooperation and understanding between nations.  We will begin to responsibly leave Iraq to its people, and forge a hard-earned peace in Afghanistan.  With old friends and former foes, we will work tirelessly to lessen the nuclear threat, and roll back the specter of a warming planet.

We will not apologize for our way of life, nor will we waver in its defense, and for those who seek to advance their aims by inducing terror and slaughtering innocents, we say to you now that our spirit is stronger and cannot be broken; you cannot outlast us, and we will defeat you.

For we know that our patchwork heritage is a strength, not a weakness.  We are a nation of Christians and Muslims, Jews and Hindus — and non-believers.  We are shaped by every language and culture, drawn from every end of this Earth; and because we have tasted the bitter swill of civil war and segregation, and emerged from that dark chapter stronger and more united, we cannot help but believe that the old hatreds shall someday pass; that the lines of tribe shall soon dissolve; that as the world grows smaller, our common humanity shall reveal itself; and that America must play its role in ushering in a new era of peace.

To the Muslim world, we seek a new way forward, based on mutual interest and mutual respect.  To those leaders around the globe who seek to sow conflict, or blame their society’s ills on the West — know that your people will judge you on what you can build, not what you destroy.

To those who cling to power through corruption and deceit and the silencing of dissent, know that you are on the wrong side of history; but that we will extend a hand if you are willing to unclench your fist.

To the people of poor nations, we pledge to work alongside you to make your farms flourish and let clean waters flow; to nourish starved bodies and feed hungry minds.  And to those nations like ours that enjoy relative plenty, we say we can no longer afford indifference to suffering outside our borders; nor can we consume the worlds resources without regard to effect.  For the world has changed, and we must change with it.

As we consider the road that unfolds before us, we remember with humble gratitude those brave Americans who, at this very hour, patrol far-off deserts and distant mountains.  They have something to tell us today, just as the fallen heroes who lie in Arlington whisper through the ages.

We honor them not only because they are guardians of our liberty, but because they embody the spirit of service; a willingness to find meaning in something greater than themselves.  And yet, at this moment — a moment that will define a generation — it is precisely this spirit that must inhabit us all.

For as much as government can do and must do, it is ultimately the faith and determination of the American people upon which this nation relies.  It is the kindness to take in a stranger when the levees break, the selflessness of workers who would rather cut their hours than see a friend lose their job which sees us through our darkest hours.

It is the firefighters courage to storm a stairway filled with smoke, but also a parents willingness to nurture a child, that finally decides our fate.

Our challenges may be new.  The instruments with which we meet them may be new.  But those values upon which our success depends — hard work and honesty, courage and fair play, tolerance and curiosity, loyalty and patriotism — these things are old.  These things are true. They have been the quiet force of progress throughout our history.  What is demanded then is a return to these truths.

What is required of us now is a new era of responsibility — a recognition, on the part of every American, that we have duties to ourselves, our nation, and the world, duties that we do not grudgingly accept but rather seize gladly, firm in the knowledge that there is nothing so satisfying to the spirit, so defining of our character, than giving our all to a difficult task.

This is the price and the promise of citizenship.

This is the source of our confidence — the knowledge that God calls on us to shape an uncertain destiny.

This is the meaning of our liberty and our creed — why men and women and children of every race and every faith can join in celebration across this magnificent mall, and why a man whose father less than sixty years ago might not have been served at a local restaurant can now stand before you to take a most sacred oath.

So let us mark this day with remembrance, of who we are and how far we have traveled.  In the year of Americas birth, in the coldest of months, a small band of patriots huddled by dying campfires on the shores of an icy river.  The capital was abandoned.

The enemy was advancing.  The snow was stained with blood.  At a moment when the outcome of our revolution was most in doubt, the father of our nation ordered these words be read to the people:

“Let it be told to the future world…that in the depth of winter, when nothing but hope and virtue could survive…that the city and the country, alarmed at one common danger, came forth to meet [it].”

America.  In the face of our common dangers, in this winter of our hardship, let us remember these timeless words.  With hope and virtue, let us brave once more the icy currents, and endure what storms may come.

Let it be said by our children’s children that when we were tested we refused to let this journey end, that we did not turn back nor did we falter; and with eyes fixed on the horizon and Gods grace upon us, we carried forth that great gift of freedom and delivered it safely to future generations.

Project Management – The Key to Getting Stuff Done!

Artists MBA, Professional ProgramToo much to do!  It all feels equally urgent!  Oi – where do I start?

Sound familiar?  We have so many demands on us – both externally – people wanting us to get stuff done for them – and internally – fulfilling our dreams and goals.

How do you manage it all and maintain your sanity?

 

In this class we discover:

  • The project management mistakes that lead to procrastination and paralysis
  • The two kinds of projects and how to manage both
  • The skill of prioritizing according to your values
  • How to eat an elephant (I mean, manage and complete a project) – you know – one bite at a time!

Additional Resources for this Class:

Prerequisite Class:

Listen to the Class:

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to access the following classes today ($5 for first 10 days/$27 per month Tuition):

Read the Class Transcript

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Enroll in the Artists Marketing & Business Academy Mastery Lab to access the transcript of this class today


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Debra Recommends Time Management From the Inside Out

Debra Russell recommends, time management, Systems

The Foolproof System for Taking Control of Your Schedule–and Your Life

by Julie Morgenstern

I use this book as my “text” when working with private clients on time management issues. I’ve also used this book and Julie’s methods extensively creating my own time management structures. It’s absolutely brilliant!

From Amazon.com:

Those who fear “time management” because they worry about living uncreative or overly scheduled lives will find themselves reassured by Morgenstern’s ability to customize her system. The most important thing readers must do, she emphasizes, is to create a time management system that fits one’s personal style–whether it be spontaneous and easily distracted or highly regimented and efficient. “Just as everyone’s living room looks different, reflecting the individual’s or family’s values and priorities, everyone’s time management system will look different, reflecting what’s important to him or her,” she explains. Fortunately, readers can easily customize her excellent advice while learning how to create a personal time map, streamline routine tasks, conquer procrastination and chronic lateness, and manage all the inevitable crises and distractions of daily life. Speaking of procrastination, what better time than now to try this book out–ridding yourself of all that draining clutter so you can get on with living the life you want? –Gail Hudson

Buy Time Management from the Inside Out now

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Debra Recommends A Cure for the Common Life

The Cardinal Rules of Self-Esteem

by Catherine Cardinal, PhD

This book, originally titled the Ten Commandments of Self-Esteem was written by my dear friend, Catherine.   Going beyond what we already know about self-esteem, she offers simple, clear steps that will lead you into the life you deserve.

From Amazon.com:

A CURE FOR THE COMMON LIFE: THE CARDINAL RULES OF SELF-ESTEEM is a small but deceptively powerful book that pinpoints 10 specific ways to recognize the root cause of common emotional problems and, at the same time, determine a realistic course for improvement. What makes this book different from so many other “self-esteem” books is author Dr. Catherine Cardinal and her instinctive, straightforward ability to connect with the heart of the problem. Her compassionate and honest comments then provide a realistic view of the many options we have before the next step.

Written in a clear, thoughtful, all-embracing, and entertaining style, Dr. Catherine Cardinal gives you the confidence and support to finally take that giant leap – and change for your own good.

Buy The Cure for the Common Life now

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Debra Recommends Taming Your Gremlin

Debra Russell recommends, Rick Carson, Taming Your Gremlin, inner critic, emotional intelligenceA Surprisingly Simple Method for Getting Out of Your Own Way

by Rick Carson

From Amazon.com:
This is a completely updated edition of the 1983 classic that introduced a powerful method for gaining freedom from self-defeating behaviors and beliefs. Rick Carson, creator of the renowned Gremlin-Taming Method, has revised the book to include fresh interactive activities, real-life vignettes we can all identify with, and new loathsome gremlins ripe for taming. Carson blends his laid-back style, Taoist wisdom, the Zen Theory of Change, and sound psychology in an easy-to-understand, unique, and practical system for banishing the nemesis within. Among the things you will learn are:

  • Techniques for getting a sliver of light between the natural you and the monster of your mind.
  • The extraordinary power of simply noticing and playing with options.
  • Six keys to maintaining emotional balance amid upheaval.

Buy Taming Your Gremlin now

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Debra Recommends The Success Principles

Debra Russell recommends, Jack Canfield, success, law of attraction, chicken soup for the soul,

How to Get From Where You Are to Where You Want to Be

by Jack Canfield and Janet Switzer

From Jack’s Website:

Jack Canfield, co-creator of the phenomenal bestselling Chicken Soup for the Soul® series, turns to the principles he’s studied, taught and lived for more than 30 years in this practical and inspiring guide that will help you get from where you are to where you want to be.

The Success Principles will teach you how to increase your confidence, tackle daily challenges, live with passion and purpose, and realize all your ambitions. Not merely a collection of good ideas, this book spells out the 64 timeless principles used by successful men and women throughout history. And the fundamentals are the same no matter what your profession or circumstances—even if you’re a student, stay-at-home mom or currently unemployed.

It doesn’t matter if your goals are to be the top salesperson in your company, become a leading architect, score straight A’s in school, lose weight, buy your dream home or make millions of dollars—the principles and strategies are the same.

After learning the basics of success, you’ll move on to tackling the important inner work needed to transform yourself. Next, get ready to build your “success team” and expand all your most important relationships. Finally, because success always includes financial prosperity, you’ll learn to develop a positive money consciousness along with habits that can ensure you’ll be able to live the lifestyle you want—while keeping the importance of tithing and service central to your financial life.

Taken together and practiced every day, these principles will transform your life beyond your wildest dreams!

Filled with memorable and inspiring stories of CEO’s, world-class athletes, celebrities, and everyday people. The Success Principles will give you the courage and the heart to start living the principles of success today!

You’ll learn:

  • How to change the outcome of any event, simply by changing your response to it
  • How to access powerful mentors and friends who’ll open doors for you
  • How to complete past projects, heal past relationships and process old hurts, so you can embrace the future
  • How to prepare and be instantly ready when opportunity comes knocking
  • How to implement the unique time management system that insures you’ll have time to focus on success
  • How to say “no” to the good, so you’ll have room in your life to say “yes” to the great
  • How to ask for and get everything you want…from people who can give it to you
  • Why you should drop out of the “Ain’t It Awful” Club and instead surround yourself with successful, positive and nurturing people
  • How to maximize your success with money, your finances, your future…and so much more! 

The Jack Canfield Success Store Buy The Success Principles now

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