Going Out in Style

Scott Carrier. 

This guy is a character and definitely beats his drum to his own melody. He serves as a journalism writing professor at good ol’ Utah Valley University and used to scare my little naieve self too death.  The guy is a bucket of knowledge and has written powerful articles about hefty tops like the Palestinian conflict, drugs, war, etc. etc.  His work has been published in the Rolling Stone magazine and he has written a book called “Prisoner of Zion.”  Basically, he is a power house that knows how to tell the truth in a clear,concise matter. 

Today we finished up his class and he issued us a final quiz.  Since we are a journalism class, we listen a lot to him speak and write down what he says as fast as we can.  So today we did this again and wrote down word-for-word interpretations of quotes by Sam Hamill of the book “Wen Fu.”  We were supposed to write next to the quote whether we thought the idea was true or false.  So basically, we all did this and stressed over what was the ‘right’ answer only to find out at the end of the quiz that Carrier was giving us all a 100%. That my friends, is the way to go out in style!

This isn’t a pointless post, don’t worry.  I wanted to include these quotes that we wrote on here for you all to see.  If you haven’t thought what you write or say was important or worthwhile before, I want you to read these and re-evaluate.  What you say does matter and you can make a different.

1. “Everything I wrote was true because I believed in what I saw.” -Jack Keroauc (one of the most powerful writers of all time)

2. “This is all I ask of the writer.  To be a hero, appoint herself/himself as a moral leader, wanted or not.  I believe that words count, that writing matters, that poems, essays, and novels–in the long run–make a difference.  If they do not, then in the words of my exemplar, Alexsandr Dyachenko, the writer’s work is no more important than the barking of village dogs at night.” -Edward Abbey

3. When cutting an axe handle with an axe, surely the model is close at hand.

4. When studying the work of masters, she follows the movement of their minds.

5. The writer stands in the center of the universe contemplating the engima.

OK, I’m pretty sure no one really understands #3-5…or least I hope not because they sure lost me from about the second word on.  But if you do understand, my hat goes off.  I think the words of #1-2 are beautiful and beyond well said.

Speak up, you matter.


Oh, Pinterest

This really inspires me.

And so does this.

And yes, after I do accomplish that yoga position above, I will absolutely be making cupcakes like these.

Both of these photos came from the big hit site “Pinterest.com.”  I absolutely have joined in on the craze and am more than happy when I see creative pictures of cupcakes, clothes, decor, etc.  Of course, I naturally love checking out the inspirational pieces that people have put on the site.  And trust me, there is plenty. 

I’ve already mentioned my position as a “Pinterest.com” fan but I wanted to just issue a warning here.  I was looking for fitness inspirational photos, quotes and stories on the site when I came across some pretty wacked-out stuff.  Some pictures and ideas were unhealthy and almost scary.  One of the pieces that I’m talking about gave advice for “how to look like this photo” of a girl with a clearly rockin’ bod.  All is fine-and-dandy until the list gets down to advice #10-55 that is basically telling you how to be anorexic. It said stuff like, “Drink ice-cold water instead of dinner but make sure it is ice-cold so you can burn extra calories.” I’m pretty sure if we are really that concerned with even the smallest amount of calories burned from drinking ice-cold water, we have a problem.  This isn’t healthy nor is it ‘hot.’ 

The point I”m trying to make here is that there is absolutely inspiring information on “Pinterest.com” that is worth checking out–and I personally do… probably a little too often to be honest ha!  But there is also some misleading, dangerous inspiring pieces that we need to be on the look out for.  Don’t be deceived and don’t fall into these traps.  Instead, look for pictures of crazy yoga positions that you someday want to accomplish and look for quotes that help you reach your own personal goals!

By all means though, check out “Pinterest.com” for your own inspiring ideas about basically everything under the sun. You just might LOVE it like I surely do!

What’s with those Signs on the Side of the Freeway? Eh?

Seeing how my blog focuses on the inspiring messages in the media, it is only fitting that I give a shout out to Values.com for making my day that much brighter.  I’m pretty sure my favorite billboards out there are put out by this non-profit organization. Seriously, they make my day… Admit it, you love seeing them too!

Anyways, thought I’d give you a little Q&A about their organization because let’s be honest, you’ve always wanted to know but are too dang lazy to actually follow-up on it and check it out when you get home to your computer.  I am absolutely copy and pasted information directly from their site (values.com), so don’t go filing copy-right infringements on me or reporting me, deal?! This is just for your benefit. Ok, here we go:

What is The Foundation for a Better Life?
The Foundation is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization, started in 2000. Our sole objective is to promote positive values, using print and broadcast media
Why are you doing this?
We want the stories we share about the positive actions and values of others to serve as inspiration for someone to do one thing a little better, and then pass on that inspiration. A few individuals living values-based lives will collectively make the world a better place.
How do you determine these values?
The Foundation does not have a political or religious agenda. Our values are selected with the hope that most individuals would find these values universal, encouraging, and inspiring. The Foundation acknowledges that each person has a unique lens through which he or she views the world. Naturally there are religious, nonreligious, political, and cultural views that give meaning to our lives. Our objective is to provide a wide spectrum of values without any intended agenda or slant and provide an uplifting message around each one.
Where does the money come from to support your public service campaigns?
Public service media, by definition, is donated by the television, theatre, outdoor, print, and radio media outlets. Their generous contribution of time and space allow these messages to be seen and heard around the world.
How are these messages created?
The Foundation has developed a network of writers, art directors, and marketing people to provide technical and creative input. We also listen to the stories of those who are making a difference in their communities to better understand the role that values play in their desire to do good and Pass It On.
Are you affiliated with any religion or political view?
The Foundation for a Better Life is not affiliated with any religion or political view. We hope that the values we share transcend any religious, political or cultural orientations.
Are you affiliated with any other organizations?
We have a sister foundation, The Random Acts of Kindness Foundation. The Random Acts of Kindness Foundation is the only organization with which we are affiliated.

How can I work for The Foundation for a Better Life?

We have an extremely small staff and therefore do not typically have openings. The best way to be a part of the Foundation is to incorporate the values in your own life and pass your values on to others in your school, work-place, and other organizations that you may be a part of.

Can I join The Foundation for a Better Life?

The Foundation is not a membership organization, and we do not sponsor or endorse any groups or clubs. The best way to “join” is to incorporate the values in your own life, setting a good example that you can pass on to others.
Can my organization partner with The Foundation for a Better Life?
We cannot sponsor or endorse any groups or clubs. The best way to “partner” is to incorporate these values in your organization: hang posters, play the TV spots, and be a positive example that you can pass on to others.

Can I give The Foundation for a Better Life money?

We do not solicit nor accept any money. However, all of our media space is donated. If you are affiliated with a television station, theatre exhibitor, radio station, print publication, or outdoor advertising company and are interested in receiving information about participating in an upcoming public service campaign, please email us.

Can The Foundation for a Better Life give me money?

The Foundation does not give grants or any other aid. We exist to promote positive messages that encourage and inspire a better life.
Do you sell posters of your billboards or copies of your public service announcements?
Because we are non-profit and non-commercial, we do not co-brand, sell, or otherwise use any portion of our site for profit. Visitors to our website are welcome to print copies of the billboards for their private use. All of our public service announcements may be viewed online. Schools may request posters of billboards in our current inventory by filling out a request form. Members of a media company who wish to broadcast our TV or Radio PSAs can also request broadcast-quality materials by filling out a request form. Each request is considered separately.


Photo Kick

I’ll admit that I’m on quite the inspirational photo kick lately.  Yes, this is moving away from the blog purpose of finding inspirational stories of those around us in the media, but these pictures have a good purpose!  They give us the how/why part of becoming like these influential people in our world.  They give us a mindset that might be a little different than our own and remind us to work a little harder to become a little better. When I come across an idea of how to think a little differently, it sticks.  These messages serve as an “Ah-ha” moment that re-motivate me.  These pictures
below are very effective re-motivators:

Yesterday you said tomorrow.

I love this.. So often I let myself slack-off because I promise myself tomorrow I will change.  This basically just kicks you in the butt and calls you out for doing that. This reminds us that the problem remains when we keep saying tomorrow, everyday. Come on, that is pathetic.  We have the chance everyday to create the change we wanted to see yesterday.  So do it… and stick to it. Don’t say tomorrow again today–make the change NOW regardless of getting to that “Monday” that will be a good starting point for a new habit. You’re going to be much happier if you take initiative–regardless of how hard it will be.  Moral of this sign: Kick the habit.

It’s never a question of can you but will you?

This message speaks pretty loud to us as well.  It’s saying this: we all have the ability to do things beyond what we think we are capable of. The problem is we will never know how far we can run until we actually lace up our shoes and go for it. We make the excuse that we “can’t” do something when in reality we really can, just maybe have never tried. This picture illustrates beautifully that we can do things, it is just a matter of if you will or not. I like that the girl in the picture is in a “ready stance.”  This is effective because she is gearing up to take the initiative–she’s not sitting in her office asking whether or not she can do something… She has put on her cute running outfit and has stepped out to do it. (Evidently she has been doing this for a while too.  I mean seriously, check out those abs.  If that is not a motivation itself, ha!)

What did I take away from these two pictures in a nut-shell? We CAN DO THINGS and need to just get out and do them.  So there is my little interpretation and attempt at being an inspirational speaker myself, HA!

And guess what? Sometimes a a kick in the pants by an ad by Nike, the Better Life Campaign, Adidas, or whatever is exactly what we need to remind us of a mindset that successful inspirational people have. What works for you? Do you have a favorite inspirational photo? Let’s post it! Leave the link in the comments page and look for the future post with the collaboration of great photos.

Picture Frenzy

This picture has made its presence known on facebook and other social networking sites as of late. Crazy to think how quickly a picture posted by one person could spread. Soon, friends are posting it then their friends post it, then their friends post, etc. etc. until there is a public awareness of it. So basically, if you haven’t seen this yet…You might be living in a closet… and it’s time to get out.

I’m including this on my blog because it is in fact inspiring. I mean, come on. How many of us actually thought about going running that day after we saw this?  It sparked an idea right? Comedy in the media is powerful.  In fact, one of my teachers for a journalism class said comedy is more powerful than war.  He stated comedians like Steven Colbert, Jeff Foxworthy, Dave Chapelle, Bill Cosby, etc. all have power beyond measure because of their ability to create messages that impact us. We remember what they said and our emotions are stirred up enough to make us decide our own standpoint.  Along with this idea of comedy being powerful, I saw a quote the other day that stated:

“The best revenge is being happy”

Just something to think about! Maybe you’ll have to create an ad or something someday… Use some comedy folks

Inspired Introduction

The start of every blog needs a good introduction. My blog will be no exception but I want to keep this short. The reason for my blog is pretty simple: people inspire me. I love the inspirational stories that surrounds us. I want to create this blog that is a collaboration of inspiring people and news each week that is in the media. I want us to all relish and reflect on the good through these stories but also define why/what media has done to establish these stories in this way. Given my passion for talk shows (yes, you heard right…talk shows!) I will put a focus on interviews but will also highlight other forms of media and their role in projecting the inspiring. Let us all reflect and continue on INSPIRING EACH OTHER. Join me on this little journey, will ya?