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Do you want to know what is the problem in the world? read on …

What is the problem with the World? There are endless problems in the world too many to list, but I was thinking that it would be an intellectually challenging exercise to try to put my finger on it. A foolish endeavor you may think. Maybe. Only a fool or a wise man could seriously pretend to know the answer to this question. I happen to know a wise and eccentric philosopher (Bertrand Russell [1]) who pondered over this question and who came up with an answer that is quite remarkable.

The problem with the world is that fools, and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, but wiser people are always so full of doubts.

Bertrand Russell

Et voila, in just one sentence Bertrand Russell sums it up. So, now that we have the answer to the question, let’s look at this more closely to see what we find out when we dissect Bertrand Russell’s statement. Pretend you are sitting comfortably in a theater to see the latest production of this Shakespearean tragedy or comedy, depending on your sense of humor, titled: “What Is the Problem With the World”. There are three main characters on stage, the Fool, the Fanatic, and the Wise Man.

Act I – Do you want to know what is the problem in the world ? Ask the Fool he believes he knows best

Do you want to know what is the problem in the world? The Fool knows best – Photo by Kapone via freepik.com

The fool is grandiose (borderline annoying), confident (borderline arrogant), flamboyant (borderline tacky) and walks through life feeling absolutely certain about everything. A fool is set in his opinions and feels that he has a duty to share his way of thinking about this and that and everything important. A fool does not care to take counsel from others nor listen to their opinions, because he knows best. He has no fluidity of mind and is set in his ways.

New opinions are rejected and opposed just because they don’t fit the accepted idea and concepts that the fool has adopted as hard truth. The fool’s arrogant certainty about everything is set in stone and even King Arthur would not be able to dislodge him from that position. The problem with the fool is that he doesn’t know enough to know that he doesn’t know about the things he thinks he knows.

In the kingdom of the blind, the one-eyed man is king – Erasmus

Act II – Do you want to know what is the problem in the world? Ask the Fanatic he believes he has access to absolute truth

Do you want to know what is the problem in the world? The fanatic believes he has access to absolute truth. Photo by Anna Oddi via freepik.com

The fanatic is not a fool because he is a true believer in his cause and spends a substantial amount of his time learning about the cause he is fighting for. But just like the fool, he feels absolute and resolute certainty in his belief. The Fanatic refuses to hear and contemplate opposing views. You can find fanatics in all areas of life religion, politics, sports, media, etc. Fanatics can be leaders or followers, they are people who indulge in a toxic concoction of self-affirming, know-it-all confidence believing that they have unique access to absolute truth, truth so perfect that they have to impose them on everyone.

It is not what they believe that makes them fanatics it is how they believe it – no need to provide further evidence, no need to question or doubt. They operate in an irrational and emotional manner hiding their irrationality by rehearsed arguments that have been repeated and learned over time, not refreshed, updated, or put to the test. Fanatics are rigid in their thinking. The problem with this is that nothing is really certain what is true today may not be true tomorrow.

“Uncertainty is an uncomfortable position, but certainty is an absurd one”

Voltaire

Our two main Shakespearean characters, the Fool and the Fanatic will not give a second thought to Voltaire’s adage because they remain certain and dogmatic in their beliefs.

Act III – The Wise Man believes that he knows nothing

Do you want to tknow what is the problem in the world? Photo by user 24028417 via freepik.com

According to the Ancient Greeks, the source of all wisdom and clarity is to know thyself. That Motto knows thyself was one of the maxims inscribed on the Temple of Apollo at Delphi.

“The only true wisdom consists in knowing that you know nothing.”

Socrates

According to the Wise Man of Ancient Greece, you may find the path to wisdom, if you start from a position of humility and if you accept the extent of your ignorance. A lot of us like to think of ourselves as pretty smart, rational individuals and funny too. But what if we’re wrong? Do we overestimate our own abilities? Are we completely blind to our own failings?

Socrates is known as the wisest man in Athens, but he doubted this very much until he put it to the test. Socrates’ favorite pastime was the pursuit of Truth. His reputation as a philosopher spread across Athens and beyond. When told that the Oracle of Delphi revealed to one of his friends that he was the wisest man in Athens, Socrates responded, not by boasting or celebrating, but by trying to prove the Oracle wrong.

Socrates decided to find out if anyone knew what was truly worthwhile in life, as anyone who knew that would surely be wiser than him. He questioned everyone he could find, but no one could give him a satisfactory answer. Instead, they all pretended to know something they clearly did not. Finally, he realized that the Oracle might be right after all; he was the wisest man in Athens because he alone was prepared to admit his own ignorance rather than pretend to know something he did not.

The Wise man is humble in his knowledge, he is open-minded and recognizes that he has limited knowledge; and because he knows that there are so many things that he doesn’t know, he has doubts. The Wise Man understands that someone else may have knowledge that he doesn’t have, and this could lead him to change his opinion on this and that. He has fluidity of mind, he is not rigid in his view and his pursuit of the truth will lead him to question everything.

Ladies and gentlemen we are coming to the end of this production, thank you for reading this Shakespearean piece. And with this said, I will give the floor to the man himself for the final word.

“A fool thinks himself to be wise, but a wise man knows himself to be a fool.”

Shakespeare.

PS: If you like this piece, feel free to applaud and comment. If you didn’t like this piece, feel free to criticize it not in a fanatical kind of way but after careful consideration just like a Wise Man would do; and I will try my best not to react to your comments in a foolish kind of way.

[1] Bertrand Russell (18 May 1872- 2 February 1970), British philosopher, mathematician, historian, political activist, and Nobel Laureate.

For more on this subject you can purchase my book This is Your Quest online at BookLocker, from Amazon or from Barnes & Noble.  The Ebook version is available on Amazon (Kindle), Barnes & Noble (Nook), Apple (iBooks) & Kobo. Check out my Amazon Author Page here or my listing on Booksradar.com.

The audio version of my book “This Is your Quest ” is available. Feel free to check it out and use this special Promotion code

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Self-Help

Hope, Spring Eternal. all Right Spring. Do Your Thing!

Spring is the season of new beginnings, rebirth, joy, and renewed hope. Fresh buds bloom, animals awaken, and the earth seems to come to life again. With Spring the beauty of the world is in full display in an onslaught of colors that is forcing the darkness of the long winter months into a hasty retreat. The world radiates with alacrity, the sky is painted in stunning streaks of red, pink, purple, and blue, and the birds sing their delight to the heavens. Some people say that God created Hope and Spring on the same day. So, let Hope, and Spring Eternal find their way to your home.

Hope, Spring Eternal

2021 carries with it a lot of hope bearing in mind what we all went through in 2020. We are living in an age of despair and fractured communities where we are being forced to alienate ourselves from our family, friends, colleagues, and clients. The unintended consequences of this forced isolation are that the less we interact with other people, the less tolerance we feel for other people, and the more we find comfort in our own ‘sanitized’ bubbles.

Hope triggers a sense of purpose and aspirations during desperate times. Hope provides a haven from pessimism and fear. It galvanizes our courage and mobilizes our energy and vitality. It enhances our mood and our creative thinking.


Hope is the place you want to go when you find yourself sitting in a dark place. Hope is the name of the person you want to know where all the people around you are spreading fear and misery. Hope is the seed that is buried deep inside you that you want to sprinkle around like magic fairy dust. Hope is the feeling that carries you through, no matter what

Joanne Reed
Spring is here. Mount Namsam. Seoul, South Korea

But let’s steer away for a moment from the lovely fluffiness and romanticism attached to this noble feeling of hope, joy, and peace for all; hoping for things to get better without doing something about it is not enough. We have to spring into action and be more intentional about our hopes and aspirations for the future.

If you think that all the problems of the world will be resolved as soon as we can all agree on how to move forward, then you are kidding yourself because instead of going to that place called Hope, you will swim in an ocean of Despair. Asking everyone to agree on one thing is an impossibility, and the earlier we realize this, the better it will be.

Being able to work together and live in a semi-harmonious manner with our neighbors and within our community is good enough. Don’t try to aim for a utopic world vision seen through pink-tinted glasses where everyone loves and helps each other. Stay real and grounded, it is not about friendship and interacting only with the people you like and the people who think the same way as you think. Life is about getting along with people who are different from you, with people you find boring, annoying, or even objectionable; because the challenges that face us as a group are more important than our personal likes and dislikes. It doesn’t matter what people believe, what matters is what they do. Agree on actions.

Humans are naturally cooperative and loving. We raise children and care for pets. Divide and conquer is a strategy that has been used since the beginning of time by a small group of people who are thriving to exert control over the populace. The more energy is expended by the public fighting among themselves the less anger is directed at the overlord class. It is a Machiavellian ploy. Do not fall into this trap.

But I digress, let’s get back to hope, spring eternal; during springtime, the buds that stayed buried in the ground during the whole winter months decided all together that now is the time to spring into action and burst into life with the common purpose of sharing their beauty with the world.

Hope, Spring eternal may the spirit of Spring give us the strength to act with a sense of purpose for the benefit of all.

Joanne Reed

Hope for a new kind of Renaissance

Renaissance is a French word meaning “rebirth.” It refers to a period (14th till 17th Century) in European civilization that was marked by a revival of classical learning and wisdom. From its origins in 14th-century Florence, the Renaissance spread across Europe and it changed the world in just about every way one could think and it came right after one of the darkest periods of human history where the black plague killed millions of people (1 in 3 people across the world perished from the plague).

The Renaissance pushed the boundaries of what we know and what could be achieved. New continents were discovered. Copernicus and Galileo shocked the world and most importantly the whole ecclesiastic establishment by establishing that the Earth was not the center of the Universe but was revolving around the Sun. Radical thinkers such as the humanist Erasmus expounded a new way of looking at the world that owed less to blind subservience to the Catholic Church and more to the possibilities inherent in the human mind.

Cherry blossom, Namsam Tower, Seoul, South Korea. Photo by Tawalchai07

Never before had there been such a coming together of art, science, and philosophy. And never before had there been such an opportunity for it to be so widely disseminated, thanks to the invention in 1440 by Gutenberg of the printing press. For the first time, books could be mass-produced. A single press could churn out 3,600 pages a day, resulting in an explosion of literature and ideas unprecedented in history.

Erasmus (the humanist) became a bestselling author. The new ideas of free-thinkers, mathematicians, and scientists all became accessible to the masses. Art and science became, for the first time in human history, truly democratic.

Humanism emphasized the dignity of man. In place of the medieval ideal of a life of penance as the highest and noblest form of human activity, the humanists encourage the rebirth of a lost human spirit and wisdom. The effect of humanism was to help men break free from the mental prison imposed by religious orthodoxy, to inspire free inquiry and criticism, and to inspire new confidence in the possibilities of human thought and creations.

The seeds of the modern world were sown and grown during the Renaissance. With Spring in full bloom, we should thrive for the return of a Modern-Day-Renaissance where creativity, freedom of thoughts, and expression are free to bloom for all the world to see allowing mankind to achieve new heights in this tumultuous period.

And my dear friend, This is Your Quest 

For more on this subject you can purchase my book This is Your Quest online at BookLocker, from Amazon or from Barnes & Noble.  The Ebook version is available on Amazon (Kindle), Barnes & Noble (Nook), Apple (iBooks) & Kobo. Check out my Amazon Author Page here or my listing on Booksradar.com.

The audio version of my book “This Is your Quest ” is available. Feel free to check it out and use this special Promotion code

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Self-Help

Everybody Is As Lost as you are. Nobody has it figured out

I wrote an article recently titled Why being confident matters, the main idea of the article is that being confident matters a great deal because it acts as a protective shield. Bullies and predators’ favorite types of victims are those who are weak, easy to conquer, and less likely to put up a fight. If you are walking in the street with your eyes on your feet and hunched around, you broadcast to the world your vulnerability; but on the other hand, if you stand up straight with your shoulders back, if you walk tall and stare forthrightly ahead you broadcast to the world that you are solid, ready to face whatever life is throwing at you, and you know where you are going.

The question is do you know where you are going? Do you know what you want in life? Do you have your future all figured out? Most of us would no doubt visualize our future as being bright and happy, with success attached to our name, living comfortably with people we love around us. This is what most people want, right? But how do we get to that picture-perfect-happy place?

Everybody is as lost as you are

Social media is full of people looking their best and leading a ‘perfect’ life, but nobody really knows what’s really going on behind the scenes. Things may look pristine on the surface, but pretty messy underneath. Moreover, you never know what it took for people to get to where they are, all the hard work, all the rejections, the sweat, the tears, the setbacks, the doubt, the number of years it took them to become an ‘overnight’ success.

Nobody has it all figured out because life rarely works out as planned. Having a plan and doing everything you can to implement it is always a good idea; except that things happen, unexpected events, delays, setbacks are bound to show up when you least expect it and mess-up your plan. All those things could take you down a path that you did not envisage and certainly didn’t plan for. This said, being rigid about the plan is not going to help.

Everybody is as lost as you. Nobody has it figured out, but I am very good at making plans, and I stick to them – Photo by http://www.slon.pics via freepik.comking plans

Remember the points I made in this other article I wrote titled Rules to break: Make a PLan and Stick To It . On one hand, making plans and sticking to them is a good idea because it encourages discipline and demonstrates one’s ability to persevere despite difficulties and setbacks. As a general rule being disciplined and persistent is a good thing. Whatever you do, give it your best shot and try it long enough to figure out whether it is a goer or not. If you quit too early and too often, you may never see your efforts pay off.

On the other hand, you have to have enough foresight to see that sometimes your ideas and vision don’t match reality, and being stubborn about it can cost you more than just pride. There is no virtue in sticking to the plan merely because it’s the plan. Sometimes you have to adapt, pivot, and rectify the plan if and when necessary.

Remember that not getting what you want is sometimes a wonderful stroke of luck

Dalai Lama

Being lost and not knowing where you are going in life may fill you with a sense of dread, but instead of panicking, pause for a minute or two to have a conversation with yourself to try to figure things out.

Nobody has it all figured out, but you can start with your why to make sense of it all

In 2009, Simon Sinek gave a TED talk called How Great Leaders Inspire Action; in this talk, he invited business leaders to start with why. The talk went viral which gave Simon the perfect excuse to turn the 19 minutes talk into a whole book titled Start with Why. The core of the book centers around the Golden Circle Concept. There are three parts of the Golden Circle: Why, How and What. Why do you get out of bed in the morning? Why does your company exist? Very few people can clearly articulate why they do what they do. How is your process and it describes the specific actions you have to take to realize your why. It is your unique selling proposition. What is the result of the why, it is the products or services that you sell.

Everybody is as lost as you. Nobody has it figured out, but I found my passion – Photo by http://www.slon.pics via freepik.com

Knowing your why gives you the highest level of confidence you can get: I know it is right. If you want to find out why you are lost and try to figure out where you want to go, you should start with your why, which will become apparent to you as soon as you trust your gut feeling and stay true to your cause or belief, your passion.

It is right for people to want to live their lives with passion. The problem is that people believe that their passion is hiding somewhere, maybe behind a tree or underneath a rock. We should be first and foremost passionate about life itself. The truth is that our passion comes from doing things right. Get into the habit of injecting passion into all the things that you do. If you do this consistently, a time will come when something stands out above all the other things, that is the thing to devote more time to doing passionately.

For those who have found their passion but feel discouraged by the lack of validation and recognition, my advice would be to stop focusing on the outcome and start focusing on the work itself. Pursue the things you love doing and devote yourself on a daily basis to practice and hone your art until people cannot take their eyes off you.

Everybody is as lost as you are. Nobody has it all figured out but you can start with your why to make sense of it all.

And, this my dear Friend, is your Quest.

For more on this subject you can purchase my book This is Your Quest online at BookLocker, from Amazon or from Barnes & Noble.  The Ebook version is available on Amazon (Kindle), Barnes & Noble (Nook), Apple (iBooks) & Kobo. Check out my Amazon Author Page here or my listing on Booksradar.com.

The audio version of my book “This Is your Quest ” is available. Feel free to check it out and use this special Promotion code

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Self-Help

The Six Most Important Lessons I Learned This Year

The six most important lessons I learned this year

2020 is getting to a close. Thank goodness for that. If I had to choose one word to describe the year when everything happened and nothing happened all at once, it would be INSANE. I have no qualms leaving 2020 behind me wishing for next year to be much less insane. It is customary during this time of the year to reflect on our achievements and take stock of what we learned. In this article, I would like to share with you the six most important lessons I learned this year.  

But first, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all my readers and followers.

May you all have Peace and Clarity,
To be the first to latch on your door,
And Happiness to be guided to your home,
By the candlelight of Christmas,
May you have the strength to take the first step of many,
To where you want to go,
May you have the grace and wisdom,
To persist in things worth doing,
And find solace in the knowledge that,
That in itself is remarkable.

©JoanneReed

The year 2020 has taught me the following lessons:

  1. Learn the art of living in uncertain times.
  2. Never let a good crisis go to waste.
  3. When life gives you lemons, make whatever you want.
  4. Cultivate wisdom.
  5. Patience is a gift when given or received.
  6. And last but not least, feel the power of music.

Lesson 1: Learn the art of living in uncertain times

For the first time in recorded human history, the whole world is simultaneously living in a state of deep uncertainty. People are feeling worried, anxious, scared, and helpless. Nobody knows what is going to happen next, so the lesson I learned this year is that we should get comfortable being uncomfortable while uncertainty reigns.

Do not attempt to predict Black Swan Events but build robustness to their negative impacts – Photo by @freepik via freepik.com

“Uncertainty is the very condition that impels man to unfold his powers. As we navigate our own uncertain times together, may a thousand flowers of sanity bloom, each valid so long as it is viable in anchoring the human spirit it animates. And may we remember the myriad terrors and uncertainties preceding our own, which have served as unexpected awakenings from some of our most perilous civilization slumbers.”
– Erich Fromm

We live everyday with the knowledge of our staggering fragility, and we know how physiologically vulnerable our body and mind can be. We are aware that terrible outcomes are always possible and often probable.  Your Quest as a Human being is to protect yourself against the danger of losing your life but also against the danger of losing your mind.

This knowledge of our own vulnerability makes us go back and forth between ecstatic optimism and sheer despair.  In order to cope with that awareness and to counterweigh the heavy sense of our own fragility we often rely on the hope that somehow, we will be strong enough to withstand rare and unexpected events, which the author Nassim Taleb refers to as Black Swans Events.

In his book, Taleb urged his readers to not attempt to predict Black Swan Events but to build robustness to their negative impacts. The world is too complex for anyone to understand or predict exactly what is going to happen, and rather than naively try to predict Black Swan Events, we just need to be aware of the possibility and adjust to their existence, by becoming antifragile. All systems can be categorized as fragile, robust or antifragile. Fragile things are exposed and destroyed by volatility, Robust things resist, and Anti-fragile things benefit from it. 

“Some things benefit from shock; they thrive and grow when exposed to volatility, randomness, disorder, stressors and uncertainty. Antifragility is beyond resilience or robustness. The resilient resists shock and stay the same, the antifragile gets better”

Nassim Taleb

For a more detailed analysis, I invite you to read the full article I wrote on this subject.

Lesson 2: Never let a good crisis go to waste

Life is a journey, sometimes the road is nice and pleasant and other times it is rocky, arduous, dangerous and most unpleasant. No one voluntarily chooses to go down the unpleasant road, except that sometimes there is nowhere to go but down that road.

Never let a good crisis go to waste. Think, create, innovate – Photo by @freepik via freepik.com

So much of what happened this year is outside our control. Instead of worrying about things we can’t change, we should focus instead on the things that we can control. There is always a silver lining on the horizon, even if we can’t see it yet. Never let a good crisis go to waste.  One way to achieve this is to focus your energy on a purpose, a mission, a passion, something that keeps you in a state of flow. And this is how you find your opportunity, your silver lining.

For some people finding their passion is easy, they were born knowing what it was. For others, finding their passion is not so obvious. The problem is that a lot of people believe that their passion is hiding somewhere, maybe behind a tree or underneath a rock. The truth is that our passion comes first from doing things, and then doing them right.  We should get into the habit of injecting passion into all the things that we do. If we do this consistently, a time will come when something will stand out above all the other things, and that is the very thing that we should devote more time to doing passionately. That’s all there is to it, just do it.

It is possible to have a passion and still feel demotivated and deflated because you can’t see any results. The problem these days is that people are impatient, they expect instantaneous results. That’s not how things work. Being successful at something requires hard work, sweat, tears, discipline and patience. Don’t focus on the outcome, focus on the work itself. Pursue the things you love doing and devote yourself to hone your craft on a daily basis. Eventually, people will not be able to take their eyes off you.

If you still feel dispassionate and have no passion to create anything, listen to the philosopher Carl Jung who may give you some ideas.

“If you have nothing at all to create, then perhaps you create yourself. To give style to one’s character is a great and rare art.”

Carl Jung

For a more detailed analysis, I invite you to read the full article I wrote on this subject.

Lessons 3: When life gives you lemons, make whatever you want

You have all heard of the expression When life gives you lemons, make lemonade. It is a proverbial phrase that is used to encourage people to stay optimistic and to keep fighting in the face of adversity or misfortune.  Lemon suggests sourness and difficulty in life; making lemonade with lemons that are being handed out to you turns the whole sour episode into something sweet, positive and desirable.

When Life gives you lemons make whatever you want – Photo by @freepik via freepik.com

All too often, our circumstances are dictated and influenced by what people tell us is realistic or feasible. Life gave me lemons, but right now I am not in the mood to make lemonade. Actually, I have a better idea, instead of using the lemons to make lemonade I am going to use the seeds and grow a whole orchard of lemons. Now, instead of having a few lemons to make a pot of lemonade, I find myself with tons of lemons that I can sell to people who want to make lemonade.  Not a bad way to use lemons, right?

Now that I have all those lemons, I am thinking that it is time for me to stretch myself a little bit further and instead of lemons I want oranges. How can I turn lemons into oranges? I can become an alchemist. When one mention the term ‘alchemist’ we have this picture in our mind of an old bearded man that looks like Merlin (the greatest wizard of all ), trying to turn lead into gold. But in contemporary society, alchemy is a term used to describe the ability that people have to manifest personal change, an ability that we all possess.

Inner alchemy provides us the means to better understand ourselves, the universe we live in and our purpose in life. But in order to achieve that you have to let go of the old you and make room for the new you.  Think of your negative thoughts, old beliefs and habits as lead.  Your mission as an alchemist is to turn lead into gold which is your new you, the happy, healthy and emotionally balanced new you.

For a more detailed analysis, I invite you to read the full article I wrote on this subject.

Lesson 4: Cultivate wisdom

Energy moves down the path of least resistance in the environment it finds itself, be it electricity through a circuit or water in a river. Just look at the way water runs downhill; it will always find the path that allows it to flow in the easiest way possible.

Be Like water – Choose the path of less resistance Photo by @freepik via freepik.com

To take the path of least resistance, be like water. Bruce Lee’s legacy as a martial artist, movie star and deep thinker remains very much alive today; there is so much we can learn from him, still.

“BE LIKE WATER. Don’t get set into one form, adapt it, build your own and let it grow.  When you put water in a cup, it becomes the cup. When you put water into a bottle, it becomes the bottle. In order to control myself, I must first accept myself by going with and not against my nature. BE LIKE WATER. The nature of water is so fine that it is impossible to grasp a handful of it. Strike it, yet it does not suffer hurt. Stab it and it is not wounded. Sever it, yet it is not divided. It has no shape of his own but mold itself to the receptable that contains it. BE LIKE WATER. When water is heated it turns into steam, it is invisible, but it has enough power to split the Earth itself. When frozen it crystallizes into a mighty rock. First it is turbulent like the Niagara Falls then calm like a spring on a hot summer day. BE LIKE WATER.”

Bruce Lee

To learn the path of least resistance, observe nature. Everything in nature has its own purpose.  A tree grows towards the sun, takes carbon dioxide and releases oxygen. Take a leaf during fall, the dying leaf does not resist the natural circle of life, it bursts with magnificent beauty in the grand finale before its death, living space for winter to settle in. With spring new leaves will burst into life in an onslaught of colors. Everything follows its natural course. Human nature is no different.

We have to be vigilant because sometimes the path of least resistance disguises itself as the right path for us but it is the wrong one.  Do not equate the path of least resistance with the easiest path to follow. Sometimes, we make choices based on what is easiest, most pleasant or least painful.  When we do this, we may gain comfort in the short term, but we may also end up gaining a lot of pain in the long run.  It is easier and more comfortable to sit in front of the TV rather than go to a fitness class. It is easier to lose our temper than control it.  It is easier to eat ice cream and cake rather than eat kale. In those instances, taking the path of least resistance is an option, but it is the option that will not help us grow and become the best version of ourselves. You can’t get fit by sitting on your sofa eating ice cream every day, you will have to drag yourself to the gym and start lifting those weights. Without the resistance of a barbell, a muscle won’t grow.

To experience the path of least resistance, be like a seed. Our environment is much like a field in which we plant a seed. Depending on the ground and the type of environment where you plant a seed, some seeds will grow well, and others won’t. The seeds that are planted in a nourishing environment, full of good nutrients will grow. We won’t see the results straight away, but over the years the seed to grow into a mature tree. In the same regard, we must learn to treat our mind just like a garden. We must ensure that weeds and unwanted plants are not robbing and stealing the nutrients that are needed for the tree to grow and bear fruits.

“Your mind is a garden. You can grow flowers, or you can grow weeds.”

For a more detailed analysis, I invite you to read the full article I wrote on this subject.

Lesson 5: Patience is a gift when given or received

What is patience? It is essentially experiencing a certain period of time without any rewards. Waiting can drive you crazy, make you irritable, angry, frustrated, unhinged, but at the end of the day, those roller coasters of emotions will not affect the outcome one inch. If things are not happening as fast as you expected it, the best thing to do is to go with the flow and make the extra time count for something. Patience doesn’t mean passivity or resignation; it doesn’t make you a doormat or unable to set boundaries with people.

Good Things happen to those who can wait Photo by @freepik via freepik.com

Patience is power.  It is a way for you to practice emotional freedom. You can choose to be annoyed and frustrated by the delay or you can choose to use the time and turn it into something productive.  It is your choice.  It doesn’t come naturally but you can learn to transform frustration and adversity into patience.

Patience is essential to daily life and might be the key to a happy one. Having patience means being able to wait calmy in the face of frustration or adversity. So anywhere there is frustration or adversity, we have the opportunity to practice it.”

Dr Judith Orloff

We have a tendency to want to take the quickest, easiest path to our goals, we are impatient and want to see results quickly, but remember “there is no elevator to success. You have to take the stairs.” The best way to cultivate our natural impatience is to cultivate a kind of pleasure in pain, like an athlete, you come to enjoy rigorous practice, pushing past your limits, and resisting the easy way out.

For a more detailed analysis, I invite you to read the full article I wrote on this subject.

Lesson 6: Feel the power of music

Music has a unique ability to bring people together.  From a national anthem to a church hymn, or your favorite rock or hip hop song, music has the amazing ability to unite us, to pull us together as we listen, sing, dance and rejoice in the pure beauty of the  notes and melody suspended in the air.

Feel the power of music. Music will set you free – Photo by @freepik via freepik.com

Music is a universal language that can unite, heal, and set people free from their fear, their worries, their loneliness. Regardless of which language you speak and where in the world you call home, music and dance can unite and break down barriers in a magical way. Dance is a universal language and so is music. So, dance your own dance and sing your own song. Work your magic and sprinkle seeds of love everywhere you go.

Music has an amazing ability to speak to our hearts, minds and soul. It is like a prayer that stretches out into the Universe; It is quite telling that the word Universe literally means one (Uni) song (Verse). Where words fail, music speaks, there are times where words will not be enough to appease, heal and convince, so in those moments, it’s best not to say a thing; switch on the radio, listen to your best tunes and dance like nobody’s watching.

The Universal Language of Music and Dance
To all my sisters and brothers around the world
Dance your own dance
Sing your own song
Sparkle seeds of love everywhere you go
Love is spring eternal
It is the healer of all wounds
Do not drown in anger and hurt
When you can swim in a sea of love

©Joanne Reed

For a more detailed analysis, I invite you to read the full article I wrote on this subject

And this, my dear companion, is your Quest.

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Be Happy

From Zero to Hero – The Myth of Hercules

From Zero to Hero – The Myth of Hercules

One of the most popular hero of the Greek Mythology is Hercules. What makes him so popular is the fact that he is half-god and full of flaws. His life was far from perfect and filled with tragedies. He endured many trials and completed many daunting tasks, but the reward for his suffering was a promise that he would live forever among the gods at Mount Olympus.  My youngest daughter Alizé will take over for a minute or two to narrate for you (or rather sing) the story of Hercules who went from a zero to a hero in no time flat.

From Zero To Hero – Hercules – Cover by Alize Reed

From Zero to Hero Lyrics

Bless my soul
Herc was on a roll
Person of the week in every Greek opinion poll
What a pro
Herc could stop a show
Point him at a monster and you’re talking SRO
He was a no one
A zero, zero
Now he’s a honcho
He’s a hero
Here was a kid with his act down pat
From zero to hero in no time flat
Zero to hero just like that (snaps)

When he smiled
The girls went wild with
Oohs and aahs
And they slapped his face
On ev’ry vase
(On ev’ry “vahse”)

From appearance fees and royalties
Our Herc had cash to burn
Now nouveau riche and famous
He could tell you
What’s a Grecian urn?

Say amen
There he goes again
Sweet and undefeated
And an awesome 10 for 10
Folks lined up
Just to watch him flex
And this perfect package
Packed a pair of pretty pecs

Hercie, he comes
He sees, he conquers
Honey, the…

Hercules Story

Hercules is the son of Zeus, ruler of all the gods on Mount Olympus and his mother was Alcmene (Zeus’ mistress). Hercules’ personal problems started before he was even born. When Zeus’ wife Hera heard that her husband’s mistress was pregnant she flew into a rage and used her supernatural powers and a whole range of nasty spells to try to kill the baby before it was even born, but to no avail. Hercules survived but was stripped of his immortality and told that he would have to become a true hero in order to reclaim his full divinity and seat on Mount Olympus among the other gods.

Hercules – From Zero to Hero

Hercules was raised on earth but retained his god-like strengths, which, although useful, sometimes became a disadvantage. His life was not always a happy one, it was full of disappointments, tragedies, trials, and tribulations. Hercules learned that those disappointments and dark times were part of his human experience and were meant to teach him life lessons. He became the champion and the protector of the weak.

Hercules’ inner strength and ability to endure hardships made him an inspirational figure to the people and a symbol of stability in the midst of chaos, even if it was chaos that he himself caused. Hercules fought against monsters, titans and all sorts of formidable adversaries, but it is his self-sacrifice to rescue his love Meg which made him a true hero.

The myth of Hercules teaches us that everyone has monsters they need to conquer, seemingly impossible tasks that they have to accomplish, and tragedies that they have to overcome.  When faced with some difficult situations in life, one can take comfort in the stories of Hercules who went from zero to hero, we can survive one’s own tribulations and become the hero of our own life. Hercules encapsulates the hero that anyone can relate to precisely because his life was far from perfect and his character was less than ideal.

From Zero to Hero in no time flat!



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For more on this subject you can purchase my book This is Your Quest online at BookLocker, from Amazon or from Barnes & Noble.  The Ebook version is available on Amazon (Kindle), Barnes & Noble (Nook), Apple (iBooks) & Kobo. Check out my Amazon Author Page here or my listing on Booksradar.com.

Hercules From Zero to Hero
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About the Book

Breaking News! The Second Edition of my book “This Is Your Quest” is out!

By popular demand, the Second Edition of “This Is Your Quest” is out! In this new edition you will find some new analysis on some current events, some points have been refined, and some new wisdom has been added! There is more to it than there was before!

Watch the trailer below:

Second Edition of “This Is Your Quest” is out!

In this new edition you will find some new analysis on some current events, some points have been refined, and some new wisdom has been added! There is more to it than there was before!

Pick up your copy today and follow me on this Epic Adventure!


If you liked this post you can follow me on Instagram, Pinterest or Facebook, or you may also like:

For more on this subject you can purchase my book This is Your Quest online at BookLocker, from Amazon or from Barnes & Noble.  The Ebook version is available on Amazon (Kindle), Barnes & Noble (Nook), Apple (iBooks) & Kobo. Check out my Amazon Author Page here or my listing on Booksradar.com.