#HappyNewYear #Make2018Great #joy #prosperity
Another year is about to begin.
We can look at it, to borrow from the song “Sixteen Tons” that Tennessee Ernie Ford helped make famous, as “another (year) older and deeper in debt.”
We can look at it as “how am I going to make it another year?”
Or, we can look at it as, “it’s going to be the best year ever.”
It’s not just how you think about the new year, it’s how you are going to MAKE the new year your best ever.
You may think, “how am I going to make the new year great, if things aren’t going great now?”
Well, you may have to look for something better. You could even be lucky, and something better will just serendipitously come along to make your life better. If that happens, you have to have the wherewithal to recognize it.
In other words, you have to be open to new things, even if they are things you’d never dreamed would be part of your life.
Pessimism partly comes from pigeon-holing your life. You may have even been taught that “this is what you were destined to do.” When that destiny disappears, you may think your destiny has gone with it.
Optimism partly comes from knowing that you deserve something better in your life, and making yourself available to it. It’s been said that good fortune comes to those who prepare for it.
If you are open to making your 2018 great, and are looking for a vehicle to help you do that, there are many such vehicles out there. To check out one of the best, message me.
Meanwhile, take stock of what is good in your life. How can you use what is already good in your life to make your new year even better?
How can you take the turning of a calendar and turn it into the life you’ve always wanted?
Don’t let a good cup of coffee, or whatever your favorite beverage is, just sit and get cold. Drink it while it’s hot, or at its best. Propose a toast that your new year will be filled with the joy and prosperity you deserve.
If things aren’t what you want them to be, the change must begin with you. To borrow from a spiritual song, “let there be peace on Earth, and let it begin with me.”
The world is filled with issues and circumstances that could lead one to think there is little to celebrate. You may even have personal circumstances that can allow you to believe that struggle is just part of life.
Struggle CAN be part of life, certainly, but it doesn’t have to run your life.
So make a resolution to let 2018 be a great year. Then, make a promise to yourself that you will not just LET it be a great year, you will MAKE it a great year.


#HappyNewYear #2017 #BeOptimistic
Happy New Year!
Americans are hoping for a better 2017 than 2016, according to an article by Emily Swanson and Verena Dobnik, written for the Associated Press..
“Americans weren’t thrilled with (2016). Only 18 percent said things for the country got better, 33 percent said things got worse and 47 percent said it was unchanged from 2015,”reads the article, published in the Dec. 27, 2016, edition of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
But 55 percent believe things will be better for them in the new year. That’s a 12 percent improvement from last year’s poll, according to the article.
“You’ve got to be optimistic and I’m going to try,” the article quotes Elizabeth Flynn, 62, an elementary schoolteacher from Peabody, Mass.
“Next year will be better than this year, because people will have more jobs and they’ll have more money to spend,” the article quotes Bourema Tamboura, who lives in Harlem (New York City) and drives for a car service.
Optimism is contagious. Unfortunately, so is pessimism.
So let’s ask the question: Would you RATHER be optimistic than pessimistic?
Optimists are more likely to innovate. They are more likely to take action to solve their, and perhaps others’, problems.
Optimists press on, believing that things will get better eventually.
Pessimists tend to dwell on the wrongs, or perceived wrongs, that have been done to them.
They tend to cast blame on others, and other things, for their predicament.
They tend to sit still, or decline, because they believe things will get so worse that there is no use in trying to get better.
So, one can sit home, wallow, and blame. Or, he can go out, find solutions and make his life better, indeed, if it needs to get better. For some optimists, life is always good but it never hurts to believe it will get even better.
Most of life is governed by our thoughts. Certainly, uncontrollable circumstances can hit any, or all, of us. But circumstances should never govern us. Instead, they should prompt us to act, to take more control of our lives.
If you are looking for something to come into your lives that could not just improve it, but change it for the better, there are many such vehicles out there. To check out one of the best, message me.
Remember, good luck generally comes to those who look for it. You may live your life forever playing, and never winning, the lottery. But if you are open to looking, someone may come into your life with something that you may, or may not, have known you were looking for.
So, have a great 2017. Give it your best. Worry less about what will happen, and look more for what you can do to help others.
Stay optimistic. Your life will be so much better.


#recession #unemployment #optimism
“In America today, women are liberated, while combined individual wealth is the highest in the world – China, in second place, barely has 35 percent of what we do.”
So writes Jack Hunter, politics editor for Rare.us, in a column published Aug. 28, 2016, in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
So why are so many Americans bummed out? Hunter asks.
The first reason, Hunter suspects, is that the country still hasn’t recovered fully from the 2008 recession.
“Comparatively low unemployment numbers mask massive workforce dropouts, and, while sage stagnation is partially a myth, pay still hasn’t risen as consistently as it might have,” Hunter writes.
He also blames the bombardment of the 24-hour news cycle, on which tragedy predominates. Finally, he blames a “tin-eared” government and political class that has little in common with those they regulate.
Let’s break down how things are. The recession produced gobs of unemployment. Those who have found new jobs in many cases are not being paid nearly what they were being paid beforehand. Many who haven’t found jobs have given up looking.
Despite good job availability in some areas – most big rigs on the road are advertising the need for drivers, for example – people either aren’t taking advantage of those openings, or may not be qualified to take those jobs.
Couple that with the fact that truck driving, in most cases, doesn’t pay what it once did, even though the work is just as hard, or even harder given the increased traffic on the roads. That’s a disincentive to wanting to take the jobs.
Eventually, wages will start to increase as demand for labor increases.
Although “now hiring” signs are popping not just on the trucks, but at other places of employment, most of the available jobs are those with which one would have difficulty making a living. Many people are cobbling together a couple of part-time jobs to try to pay their bills. Folks like these are not going to necessarily embrace what’s good about America.
The news cycle spends lots of time on bad news, but the bad news has to be reported. Many news outlets try to balance off the bad news with some good, uplifting stories. Hunter talks about America’s success at the 2016 Summer Olympics as one of those uplifting stories.
Certainly, a polarized government like ours will be slow to solve problems, but the cure for most of the country’s ailments lies outside the government’s wheelhouse.
So, on balance, life is pretty good for a lot of people. If you don’t believe you are among them, there are ways in which you can act to improve your situation. There are many ways potentially to make money without the benefit of a traditional W-2 job. To find them, you first have to be willing to look, perhaps, outside your comfort zone. If you’d like to check out one of the best, message me. You might see how people perhaps just like you took their futures into their own hands and helped others do the same.
To get that positive mind-set, look for the good things in your life – friends, family etc. Focus on those. Then, begin to do all that YOU can to find a solution to the problems in your life. The holiday season is perhaps the best time of year to do that. The joy of what is good shines at Christmas, and that joy can spark optimism for the new year.
Remember, too, that, for most of us, there is no great benefactor out there. We must provide for our own futures. If you see life that way, you’ll be better equipped to celebrate the ups and deal with the downs.


What qualities does a leader have?
He or she is happy, optimistic and a problem solver.
So says Dr. Dale Henry, a Tennessee-based educator, trainer and speaker, and owner of Your Best Unlimited training academy.
Henry’s speech, given at the Leadership Cumberland graduation ceremonies in Crossville, Tenn., Aug. 23, 2016, was titled, “Look Before You LEAP – For the Landing Spot.”
Henry says that despite those desired qualities in a leader, we all tend to be whiners.
When we have difficult decisions to make, our first question tends to be,”Whose Fault Is This?” Who is to blame for the difficult circumstances we are in.
Casting blame takes valuable energy away from solving problems.

We tend to gravitate toward, “the world is going to hell in a handbasket,” instead of “the future looks very bright.”
Let’s take Henry’s three characteristics and break them down.
First, being happy is something that doesn’t always come naturally. Often, we get thrown curve balls in life and, when we get enough curve balls thrown at us, we tend to lose our happiness. Leaders tend to look beyond circumstances toward what’s good in their lives, and focus on that. So, happiness is not always natural. Sometimes, we have to work on being happy.
Optimism has much the same quality as happiness. If one watches the TV news, reads newspapers etc., one finds optimism stealers galore.
Whether it’s a natural disaster, humans behaving badly or overzealous actions on behalf of one’s beliefs, it’s not easy to be optimistic about the future.
Yet, there is so much good going on unnoticed. Amid disaster, there are people giving their time, talent and treasure to help. Amid criminal acts, there are people bringing those responsible to justice. Amid overzealous actions, there are calm and reasoned voices attempting to deal with the problem.
As individuals, we must be leaders. We must see what is good in our lives and focus on that.
Solving problems can be much more difficult than casting blame.
When a tough decision is before us, we must remain calm, rational and curb whatever emotion we bring to the problem. We must take each solution and weigh all aspects. We must look for the potential good in any bad situation.
Our natural tendency is to whine We must recognize that tendency and overcome it by dealing with what’s next, instead of what was. We like to wish we could go back to what was, but when we can’t, we must realize that our only option is to move on. We should do so with the utmost happiness and optimism.
If you are a happy, optimistic problem solver, or believe you can become one, and are looking for action you can take to better your life, message me.
You can perhaps become a person who will not only have done that, but also have helped others do the same.
As has been often said, the windshield has a better view than the rear-view mirror. Continue to look forward, knowing you can make YOU better. If you focus on making you better, others will see it and follow you. That will make your community, country and the world better.



#HappyNewYear #LifeIsGood #optimism
Happy New Year!
You would think that Bert and John Jacobs, brothers who founded the Life Is Good T-shirt company, had a very happy childhood.
Despite their parents being in a near-death car accident, and their father facing difficulty recovering from it, their mother would always ask them at dinner each night: tell me something good that happened that day.
“That optimism was something that our family always had, even when we had little else,” the brothers write.
Natalie Walters wrote a piece on the two brothers for Business Insider Dec. 17, 2015.
The two brothers ask their employees the same thing whenever they gather: tell me something good that happened today.
Happiness and optimism don’t always come naturally.
Life can throw bad things at us, some of which we can’t control. But we can ALWAYS control how we deal with them. Sometimes, we must work at our optimism and happiness, but it is always achievable.
As we move into 2016, we can take stock of all the good that has happened in the past year. We can use all that good to make the next year even better.
Impossible for some? Well, some may have to work harder to find the good and build on it, but there is always some good to build on.
For those who can’t find it, they must look harder.
If you’ve lost a job, or have other financial issues, there are many ways out there from which help could come. For one of the best, visit www.bign.com/pbilodeau. If you find optimism difficult, begin by looking for it.
If you’ve lost a loved one, grieve as you must. But remember, that person wants you to move on. To find the courage to do so, one must look for it.
Those who wait for something to be given may never receive it. Those who look for what they want eventually find it.
The world around us can provide a litany of reasons we should be afraid, or we should worry that goodness is in short supply. But goodness is everywhere. Some see it plainly. Others have to look for it.
One can make the next year better than the last, just by believing that life is good.
For the Jacobs brothers, Life Is Good is not just their $100 million company name. It is their outlook on life, Walters writes.
Not everyone can take a positive attitude and build a big, profitable company from it. But a big, profitable company will NEVER be built on a negative attitude, or gloomy outlook on life.
So, in the new year, ALWAYS find something good that happened to you each day. Build on that goodness to see where life takes you. You could be amazed.


#downisnotout #getbackup #anenemycalledaverage
“The most natural thing to do when you get knocked down is get back up.”
So says John Mason, executive coach and author, who wrote the book, “An Enemy Called Average: The Keys to Unlocking Your Dreams.”
There’s always something out there either trying to take you down, or that will take you down by accident.
Perhaps you are in a job, and all you can think about is trying to survive a bad manager, or that next reorganization.
Perhaps you have a friend or relative with a horrible disease, and all you can think about are the horrible things that would happen to you if YOU got the disease.
Whatever the situation, there is probably something good to come of it. You just may not be seeing it.
In fact, there may be something even better down the road that you are not seeing, or may not even be looking for.
But you have to start with getting back up if you are knocked down, or standing tall in the face of what appears to you to be a dismal future.
Something in each of us will tell us to give up when the chips are down. Some of us are naturally optimistic. Others have to work at it.
We all have to realize, too, that we need to always be looking. Not looking, as in window shopping. Not looking, as in browsing the Internet for a magic solution. Instead, we should realize the myriad opportunities out there that we may not know about. When someone brings one of those to you, check it out.
It’s OK to say, no, that’s not for me. But to say, no, without looking is to say, “woe is me,” and giving up.
As Mason says, “average” is your enemy. Greatness is your friend. And, great is something EVERYONE can be, even if your current circumstances will not get you there.
Certainly, your current circumstances may be putting food on your table, a roof over your head and giving you other necessities in life. Don’t hastily throw that away. But, when you are not helping someone else line his pocket, take a little time to find something that will line yours.
That doesn’t necessarily mean taking a second job, though many do. A second job usually means lining yet another person’s pocket. Make sure that whatever you do in life has something wonderful at the end for you and, as a bonus, allows you to help others find their own dreams.
OK, how does one find what one is looking for? First, one has to be actually looking. And, one has to have a dream big enough to want to not just look, but act when he finds what may give him that dream. For a great place to start looking, visit www.bign.com/pbilodeau. You may not see all your answers there, but you will see ingredients that could give you what you are looking for.
So, when you fall down, do you just lie there, cry, whine and say “woe is me.” Or, do you get up, dust off and carry on? Do what Mason says is the natural thing. Don’t let what may take you down, keep you there. Get up, look around, know that the future is bright, if you make it so.


Growing up, were you often told what was NOT possible?
Did your elders convince you that the world was going to hell in a hand basket?
Were you constantly reminded of your “limitations?”
And, were you told that if you didn’t do certain things, you’d be messed up for life?
These and other things are common in “middle class” thinking, as defined by author Steve Siebold in his book “How Rich People Think.”
He talks about how we are often steered on a path of security, scarcity and pessimism, as opposed to risk-taking, abundance and optimism.
The trick to getting off that train of thought, and potentially becoming wealthy, is relearning what IS possible, believing that things will always get better and knowing that the sky is the limit to your success.
There is certainly nothing wrong with respecting your elders – parents, teachers, preachers etc. There is nothing wrong with emulating their work ethic and empathizing with their struggles. But ultimately, you may realize that some of what they taught you may not work for you. The secret to becoming rich is believing you can be. The secret to becoming rich, as Siebold points out, is to find solutions to problems, or figuring out what people want and delivering it to them.
If you have a job, and most of us do, recognize it for what it is. Especially in this day and age, it’s hardly the security blanket it once might have been. Look at it as a means to move you toward what you really want – that is, if you think like a rich person.
If you monitor how a rich person behaves, you’ll learn that he doesn’t behave that way BECAUSE he has money. He has money because he behaves the way he does.
Sure, good ideas might come from outside the box. But a familiar pattern of limitless possibilities, optimism and fearlessness are pretty standard among those who have money.
As we grow older, we realize that many of our fears are taught. Much of what we view as “evil” was handed down to us. Much of what we see on the horizon we approach with extreme caution and wariness, out of concern that we might lose everything.
To think rich, you don’t have to be rich. But if you think rich, you might become rich. Start by getting comfortable with taking calculated risks. Then, believe that the world will definitely get better, and you are going to help make it so. Then, realize the security you so doggedly sought is at least teetering, if not collapsed altogether. But, that’s OK. Rich people don’t expect entities to give them anything, Siebold writes.
Take a good look at your life. Are you completely happy with it? You just may be. Perhaps you have a wonderful spouse , a supportive family and dependable friends. With all that, who needs financial abundance, right?
But if life is not giving you what you want, and believe you deserve, visit www.bign.com/pbilodeau. Feed your mind with good information, inspiration and possibilities. Learn that your future can be bright no matter what else happens.
To paraphrase Napoleon Hill, learn to think and become rich.


Most leadership experts and motivational speakers and authors talk about the power of thought.
We become what we think, the adage goes.
As Frank Daniels III, community conversations editor for the Tennessean newspaper in Nashville put it, 10 years ago, we lived in fear. We had to sleep with an eye open because we had no confidence things would get better. That kind of thinking, Daniels wrote in a Dec. 8, 2013, column, is the most debilitating factor in our economy.
Income gaps between rich and poor are growing. People who want work can’t find it. Some who are working are not earning enough to support themselves or their families.
Technology and other progress helps companies do more with less. But those who lose their jobs because of technological advances pay the price.
All these things are circumstances – many of which we can’t control. But we can control how we react to them.
Though things in one’s past may have been really good, the past is gone. We have to believe that the future is going to better. Author and speaker Andy Andrews, in “The Noticer Returns,” says that perspective is everything. We have to be actively grateful for the good things in our lives. Gratitude begets optimism.
Too many people are walking around with anger, frustration and pessimism. They believe the world and their lives will get worse, not better. Andrews would call this a period of confusion. Things are changing, and we don’t know what’s coming next. We have a choice: we can look at this confusion as opportunity, or we can fear the confusion and try to stay out of it.
Staying out of the “confusion” leads not just to malaise about the world, it will likely seal one’s dismal future. If you are optimistic during this confusion, you will take the action you need to make your life better.
Our thoughts lead to actions. Optimism, followed by action, produces a good life. It may not happen overnight. Our “confusion” can last for years. But we have to see this “confusion” as something we can work through.
The question for each of us, of course, is how does one work through the “confusion.” If you are out of work, your chances of finding another job that pays you what you made before, or better, are slim. It’s not your fault, but you probably will have to think about operating with a lower salary, or do something else to enhance your income.
There are lots of vehicles out there to enhance one’s income without a traditional job, or while working a traditional job. For one of the best, visit www.bign.com/pbilodeau. Consider it a test: if you check out other sources of income, and walk away from them because you are “confused” about them, stop. Perhaps what you are looking at is not “confusing” at all. You may just need to tell yourself, “Wow! I know I can do this.”
So think long, hard and optimistically about your future. Instead of waiting for the next shoe to drop, build a dream board. Instead of believing the world will get worse before it gets better, reflect on the good parts of your life NOW. It will help you see the future in a better light.
We can’t go back to the way things were. But we can go ahead to bigger and better things amid our current “confusion.”
P.S.: Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to all!


Today is a day to focus on what is good in your life.
Happy Thanksgiving!
No matter your circumstances, there is much good for which to be thankful. Today, we should think about what we have, not what we don’t have.
Particularly in the last decade, we’ve read about, and heard about, a lot of bad things. Many of us have been personally affected by those things. It’s the media’s job to discuss what divides us. It is our job to focus on what unites us.
In the last few years, we saw housing prices plummet. We saw many lose their homes. Though a good many of us have not yet recovered from that, statistics are showing a rise in home prices and home construction. Home sales may be leveling off a bit, but the recent trend has been positive.
That many be of little comfort to those still struggling. But no matter your circumstances, you likely have much for which to be thankful.
If you enjoy a good, special meal today, remember that many others may not. If you are enjoying that meal with others, remember that many others may be alone.
Yes, today, Nov. 28, 2013, is a day to focus on what is good in your life. It’s a day to focus on what you have, not what you don’t have.
It is also a day to think about what YOU are going to do about the circumstantial breakdowns in your life. Those breakdowns may have been beyond your control, but how you repair them is entirely in your control. You have to plan what will come next in your life, then do it.
Your next step may be outside your comfort zone. That’s OK. Do it anyway. Do it afraid, if you must.
If you are looking for a tool that may help you repair any circumstantial breakdowns, visit www.bign.com/pbilodeau. You may look at this tool with some fear, but if your circumstances need fixing, fix them afraid.
Today we focus on what we have — and can have — not what we don’t have. Today, no matter our circumstances, we have much good in our lives.
Be grateful for those, and confident you can fix the circumstances that need repair.
Be grateful, optimistic and fix them afraid.
Happy Thanksgiving!


John Maxwell is always a positive person.
It’s his strength, but positive people, who look for the best in everyone, sometimes get burned.
Maxwell, an author and leadership expert, discusses this in his book, “The 5 Levels of Leadership.”
Maxwell believes that it’s better to be always positive, and get burned once in a while, than to be negative and skeptical, and never take risks or think big.
The world is very different today, from decades ago. Almost everything we do involves taking a risk.
Let’s say you are working at your job, and see something you think could improve the operation. Let’s say you could act on it right then. Would you do it? Or, would you wait, talk to your boss about it and let HIM decide whether it should be done.
Of course, the latter is the safe course of action. After all, it’s not your company. You just work there. You just do what you’re told. You also might think that even if your boss agrees with you, that those above him may not. Your boss, fearful of his job and career, will pass any heat down to you, even if you tell the bigger bosses that you’d discussed this ahead of time.
The more productive companies will applaud your initiative. If your boss passes the heat down to you, why not just take the risk and claim all the credit. Your boss may be angry with you that you didn’t let him in on what you were doing, but so be it. A good boss will applaud you for taking the initiative, and bask in the credit because he hired you and molded a great employee.
Focusing on the positive also requires optimism. Remember that very few pessimists really succeed. They may climb a little, but pessimism gets in the way of being creative and innovative.
How can you tell that a person is positive, or how can you learn to be positive?
When you ask the question, “how are you,” what is the typical answer? If you hear, “I’m OK,” or “I’m getting by,” or “I’m here,” or “I’m on the right side of the dirt,” chances are these folks are not positive.
Positive people will usually respond with, “I’m great, how are you?” or, “I’m blessed, how are you?” You see, positive people are grateful for every day. They are grateful for everything good in their lives. And, positive people sincerely want to know how YOU are doing.
Positive people believe that the best years of their lives are ahead of them, no matter what. They don’t long for the past. Usually, they don’t fight for the status quo, unless their lives are exactly where they want them to be. There are few positive people who don’t see even greater things in the future.
The less positive will wax nostalgic about how things used to be. They will fight losing battles, trying to get back to those days. They will work very hard to resist change. They go home after some misfortune and wonder what might have been.
All of that wastes energy and keeps them from doing what they need to do to improve their future. Whereas, a positive person will work WITH change and embrace it. He knows that no matter what happens, he will do what he needs to do to make his future bright, and fulfill his dreams.
If you are a positive person, visit www.bign.com/pbilodeau. See what other positive people are doing to fulfill their dreams.
Also remember the best thing that you can do to stay positive is to hang around with other positive people. Don’t let the dream stealers get you down!