This Un-Mindful Pace

Aug 27

If I pause for a moment,
To dwell on your word,A New Kind of Poetry - Mindfulness Requires a Little Pause
I ‘d listen more deeply,
And you could be heard.
We can’t keep on running,
This un-mindful pace,
We’re so disconnected,
It’s all over your face.
Let’s hit the pause button,
We know where it’s at,
It’s in between ears,
And beneath our big hat.
If we both pause together,
Then we won’t pull apart,
Then we both listen better,
As we hear with our heart.
We can both listen deeply,
With a mindfullness cause,
Take a breath – then another,
With a button called…
Okay, take a breathe! And another…. I’ve been taking this great class on mindfulness from Megan Leuchars and Christy Cassisa with UCSD Center for Mindfulness. It’s been a lot of meditating and a little yoga and a lot of shutting up and listening! Sometimes all we need to do is hit the pause button and our entire life can change.
You might want to check out this course in San Diego. Here’s the link. Even if you don’t live around here you can play their 10, 20 and 40 minute meditations and body scans right here:
Any ideas for A New Kind of Poetry? Send ’em over!  
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Money Doesn’t Grow on me!

Aug 20

Money doesn’t grow on trees – I said,
And my son looked so confused.
“What does that mean?” he said to me,
That’s when I blew my fuse.Grouchy boy

If I give in and give you cash,
We know how fast you’ll burn it,
If I say “no” you’ll have to think,
And maybe you’ll go earn it.
Yes you’ll be mad at stingy Dad,
Your friends will call me crazy,
But we both know when I say “Yes”,
It tends to make you lazy.
So this hurts inside as I stare you down,
You’re abhorred at my defiance,
But I don’t give in, it’s my job you see,
To teach you – self-reliance.
See I’m your father, not your friend,
And at times I do get – wordy,
But you need to learn this money thing,
So you don’t move home at thirty.
Believe me, I was not the perfect parent. But looking back on what it took to get our children to that point of self-reliance I think it was a little luck, a great partnership with a wife using the same playbook as I was and the ability to say no. I believe our first and most important job as a parent is teaching.
When we have the courage to say no when we need to – with a loving heart of course and when we know how to be a better teacher than a best friend to a child that desperately needs to learn life skills, our children will learn to be become not just financially responsible but responsible in all areas of their lives.
But, wait a second, let me amend one of those comments. It’s not just a parent’s courage to say “No!” it’s really more about saying, “What’s your plan?”  “Sure you can do that, sure you can buy that, sure you can… AND what’s your plan?”
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Why Fake it ‘Till You Make it?

Jun 28

Contrary to your high integrity self,
Faking it may be a skill,Football_Player-_Ashleigh_Hopkin_Wikipedia
To not leave on the shelf.
Coincidentally, this fact is barely known,
The faking skills, you’re using,
Should not be done alone.
Realistically, you must practice them with zeal,
But not behind closed doors,
You must practice them for real.
Intentionally, you’re faking doubt,
Faking can be curative,
Yes, faking helps you out!
Experimentally, just fake it for a while,
Just fake it once, fake it twice,
‘Till fake becomes your style!
Understandably – when faking things so far,
It’s not at all surprising,
The fake is who you are.
And finally, how faking should be done,
Is… fake it ‘till you make it,
And see what you’ve become!

Studies show that “acting as if…” is not exactly being phony. “Faking it” can be a skill to get you where you want to be. That doesn’t mean you have to  lie or act in inauthentic ways, it simply means you act with the confidence of a world-class athlete. They ALL believe they are number one. EVERY ONE of them believes they are going to win the competition!

So, what do you believe? How is your belief system shaping who you will become?


Image Courtesy

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Gluten-Free Chaos

May 26

First came low-fat diets,
Then – coffee was so bad,
Then wine became so healthy,
For that – I was so  glad.
 Red Wine glass from Wikipedia
Then low fat made a u-turn,
Then wine was not okay,
Then milk became the culprit,
But what is it today?
There is this thing called gluten,
In all the bread you chew,
It’s in your yummy Mac and cheese,
It’s in your licorice too!
This drives me kind of nutty,
Is gluten bad for me?
I think I’ll go bananas,
But are they gluten free?
But wait! You cannot see them,whole_wheat_bread_loaf_Wikipedia
This drives my head insane,
These tiny little proteins,
Keep messing with my brain!
“Give us this day our daily bread,”
If gluten’s what I’ve read,
Forgive me lord, I’m not quite sure,
But do you want me dead?
I think it’s not that good for me,
I know, I think, I guess…nutritional_label_Wikipedia
I cannot taste this sticky spec,
This gluten thing’s a mess!
No gluten in my oatmeal, (yuck)
No gluten in my beer, (burp)
No gluten in my pizza slice,
What is this gluten fear?
I cannot go to restaurants,
Or lunch to see a friend,
But may I have a dinner roll,
Or will that be my end!
Is wheat the biggest culprit,apple_Pie_Wikipedia
Or GMO’s gone wild,
Will I have a heart attack,
Or something rather mild?
Marketing comes from corporate,
Where gluten-free began,
They’re hyping up this “gluten thing,”
To build no gluten’s brand!
They have me pasta paranoid,
Fresh bagels make me cry,
I’m scared to death of grandma’s scones,Dinner rolls Wikipedia
My god I miss her pie!
So screw this gluten-free chaos,
And dinner rolls that kill,
This gluten free will wipe us out,
Before more gluten will!

Copyright 2014 Steve Dahl 


There is certainly a lot of nutritional science that says gluten can cause a lot of people a lot of problems. I’m well aware of that! And, like the fat-free craze or the low cholesterol craze, the marketing gurus like me were not going to miss THIS opportunity! This little piece was inspired after a git-t0gether with some friends as we comically tried to arrange the pot-luck approach to the evening to cover all the varied dietary considerations of the group. Some were gluten free, others vegan, others paleo, others, well, normal. That’s the world we live in.

And, not that one should ever be skeptical of the advertising world or the media, god forbid, but do your homework on this one!  Going gluten free will likely help you lose weight, reduce inflammation and make you feel better. And, maybe it’s not an issue for you. Get tested and follow the science.

By the way, I’m gluten free and I feel much better! 

You might consider taking 30 days and go gluten free to see how you feel!

Have a gluten-free day!

Images courtesy of

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This is NOT What I Ordered!

May 25

This is not what I ordered,
Please send my life back!
Erica is the first female paraplegic to climb to over 19,000 feet on Mt Kilimanjaro.

Erica is the first female paraplegic to climb to over 19,000 feet on Mt Kilimanjaro.

There’s been a mistake!
And my life is off track!
This is not what I ordered,
I have plans to unfold,
I see climbing and biking,
And competing for gold!
But life changed in an instant,
When my legs wouldn’t go,
My heart screamed “Get going!”
But my body said “No!”

An inspirational and educational leader, Erica speaks to audiences of all ages and shares her powerful insights while inspiring us all to CLIMB!

An inspirational and educational leader, Erica speaks to audiences of all ages and shares her powerful insights while inspiring us all to CLIMB!

This is not what I ordered!
This is not what I planned,
But this IS what I’m given,
I’ve been dealt a new hand.
But there’s no time for sorrow,
For the life I’ve been handed,
Now my Spirit says “Go!”
Begin where you’ve landed.
There are mountains to climb,
There are races to win,
I can still reach my goals,
As I reach deep within.
World class triathlete, Erica Davis, competes as part of the Challenged Athletes Foundation and Team USA.

World class triathlete, Erica Davis, competes as part of the Challenged Athletes Foundation and Team USA.

You can climb any mountain,
When your vision gets clear,
You can win any race,
When you let go of fear.
This is not what I ordered,
So I choose a new track,
I am living my dream,
And I’m not looking back!

After hearing about competitive athlete, Erica Davis, I went to her website. Here is a woman who lost all feeling from the chest down in the midst of launching her health and fitness career. This amazing athlete did not lose a beat just because of a little paralysis. Nope. She went out a climbed a frickin’ mountain!

Now, I’ve been known to complain a bit about my own aches and pains or the challenges in my life but after reading this woman’s website and hearing more about her story, I am inspired. I am inspired to ignore the trivial and focus on the dreams. I am inspired to forget the fears and get going with my life. I encourage you to take a look at your life’s challenges, then look at Erica’s. You too will be inspired.

Check out the story of Erica Davis – global athlete, advocate, and adventurer at: Images courtesy of


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Let Ending Begin

May 23

That end-of-life chatter,Door to End of Life
We’d like to ignore,
Is never that easy,
As we head toward that door.
That door we all open,
While treatment transpires,
When medicine fails,
And breathing expires.
But we wait and we wonder,
When do we say,
Time is up – it’s now over,
And hope fades away?
Our hope is not wasted,
As we struggle for words,
But this talking ‘bout death,
Is still for the birds!
We fear talking, fear dying,
We fear one final breath,
Too much hesitation,
On this topic called death.
But discussion gives courage,
Let us say what we must,
Through discomfort and pain,
We simply must trust.
We must trust our intentions,
And seek strength from above,
This end-of-life chatter,
Is a topic of love.
For if love is your message,
Then fear cannot win,
Trust yourself and start talking,
And let ending – begin.



The Mayonnaise Metaphor and a Free eBook

Yes, we all have this in common, blah, blah, blah. We’re all going to die, yadda, yadda, yadda. I work in palliative care so the topic of pain and end-of-life-suffering is a common topic of discussion in my line of work. Yet, most Americans would prefer to avoid discussing the joyful topic of expiration. Wow, I can’t even say it myself. Maybe that’s it! Maybe we just look at ourselves as a jar of mayonnaise!

Then we don’t need to use the D word! “Hey honey, I won’t be good for two weeks after my expiration date so maybe we should put those Advance Directives together!” (You can get a free eBook I put together with Advance Directive checklists and guidelines  at .

My wife often opens that jar of mayonnaise a few days after the expiration date and will ask me to give it the sniff test to see if I think it’s still good. So, while you’re still “good” have a chat with someone you love about your expiration date.

Discussing death before it’s pounding on your front door is a lot better than dealing with it during crunch time. We’ve all got that expiration date on the back of the bottle so I encourage you to spend some time with loved ones chatting about what you want towards the end. Who is going to be making decisions if you can’t? Who will manage your affairs? What is your password for Facebook? And important stuff like that.

I know what you’re thinking. “Really, Steve – a mayonnaise metaphor?”

What say you?

© Copyright Steve Dahl 2013

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