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The spot for the good news, the good word, the quick reports of the many, many wonderful news items I hear all the time and want to share with the rest of you. Expect to find the good news when you come to check out "what’s the good word?"

Monday, August 29, 2011

Circles

It was a good thing that I decided to do that little blogging series on stories last week. It saved me having to come up with a good word every day in a week that was feeling quite sad and unfocused. The passing of Jack Layton did touch me. It did seem to very unfair that someone I had admired and who was somehow "at the top of his game" should die. I am one who shared values that he espoused and I looked forward to what he might yet accomplish.

Of course this one event was not the only reason for feeling sad last week. There is not a week, it seems, when there are not reports of crime and wars with all their inherent loss of life and vision and opportunity. And we had plenty of that kind of reporting last week.

Then there are all the natural disasters. Last week was rife with them as well. It was a week when it was easy to weep.

But now I've pulled myself together (perhaps it was all those lovely stories that helped me), and I'm thinking of Stephen Covey's important lesson of the Circles. Here's a quick summary for you.

I am reminding myself that while I may have a large circle of concern it can tend to overwhelm me if I stay focused there--if I allow myself to stay with what might have been, or to imagine the too many victims of famine or of violence in the world.

What Covey teaches, and I believe what our heroes have modeled for us, is the need to find the one small thing that I can actually DO to make something better. I need to focus on the circle where I have some influence, to use Covey's term. As long as you and I sit and wring our hands in despair, the world doesn't get any better.

And there are many stories to tell of things that are getting done; hundreds and thousands and millions of people have decided to focus on their circle of influence. Those circles begin to converge and to overlap. More and more stuff is getting done, even as people think of ways to commemorate our lost ones, the ones who told us "it can be done."

Posted by Marion

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