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February 1, 2011

There are shortcuts to happiness and dancing is one of them ~ Vicki Baum, novelist

Our President recently said We Do Big Things. (click to listen to NPR story)

Optimism is always appreciated, plus, if we’re being honest, we are pretty bad a** beings when you think about what we are able to learn, put into practice and accomplish.


You could say we’re able to shortcut to these Big Things ie, better relationships with those most important to us, by cutting out some of the shortcuts we use in our moments with them, sometimes everyday.  Shortcuts to (our best) listening, the making of eye contact, sitting together to eat, our “good nights” or “good mornings” (the list goes on); basically all those supposed “little things” that can make a connection big, beautiful and, therefore, powerful.

Have a think.

In the meantime, goodbye to one shortcut we all know and have loved since long ago: microwaveable popcorn. And, hello to its more time-consuming predecessor:

Old-School Popcorn

10 minutes versus the sexy 2 min shortcut for microwaveable.

We’ve probably known this but the microwaveable variation is one we can stand to part with, says a NYT story and most recently the Splendora 10 Foods to Avoid (thank you for forwarding, MD).

So, pull the old-fashioned recipe out for the movie nights.  The 10 minutes yields good taste; something similar to that love -in-the-doing-makes-it-taste-better concept:








Oil, to film the bottom of your pot

Popping corn, to cover the bottom of same pot, usually around 1/2 cup

1 to 4 tablespoons butter, optional, or just keep it to olive oil

(Sea) Salt to taste

1. Put the oil in the bottom of your pot – a 12-inch, heavy-duty pot four or five inches deep is good – and turn the heat to medium-high. Add 3 kernels of corn and cover.

2. When the 3 kernels pop, remove the cover and add corn to just about cover the bottom. Cover and shake the pot, holding the lid on as you do so. Cook, shaking the pot occasionally, until the popping sound stops, about 5 minutes. Meanwhile, melt the butter if you choose to use it. (here’s something the microwave is good for)

3. Turn the popcorn into a large bowl, drizzle with the butter, and sprinkle with ground sea salt (& mmm, parmesan?). Serve.

Yields: 4 to 6 servings

So, popcorn. A quick example of an easy fix. It feels good to know some changes can be that ~ easy.

The greater thing still is that in this self-help, yoga-for-all age, we really are increasingly more aware of how to consciously fix whatever hurried moments we have with those around us. We all want to make life and our future better.

It’s a curious thing but having those long (vs short-sighted) goals helps to bypass wanting to pop 2 min popcorn. The choices we make and vision we hold for our relationships really does seep in to what we pull off supermarket shelves. It sounds like they wouldn’t be connected, right? Mais oui, it is, like everything, connected.

But wait, the good news isn’t over yet, the Yoga Sutras of Patanjali, or yoga bible (though, remember, yoga is not a religion) says there is absolutely a shortcut that works in all settings, is healthy and free. No real buying into anything, sort of.  You ready? It says what most business and life coaches the world over say about success in general. The shortcut (to those Big Things we want) is to…

Go Straight There.

There’s really no reason to take any other path but the one that takes you where you want to go.

(insert my laughing when first seeing diagram & quickly realizing it made complete sense)

Writing coach tells me a version of this re: my writing, often. No dilly dallying, zig-zagging or wasting time in putting in the work; in getting to the good stuff. And then this is me talking: especially with those around you.

In other words, moments. As a man I adore says, moments are what life is all about. And you can extrapolate that to all aspects of your life; to your many titles, not just at home. (I bet those around you at work need moments too).

So, waste some time popping that popcorn. Go the old-fashioned way and enjoy.

For your connections, go straight to what you want to create and build with them. It’s easier said than it is practiced sometimes, especially with the 1,400 minutes that zoom by in a day, but not impossible. Enjoy, and in joy, make your state of unions better. It will stretch your happiness.

Go Straight There.

There is only one guru ~ you.

and, for extra credit: A Consumers Dictionary of Food Additives, 7 Vital Choices for Happy Relationships, by the ever-popular Tiny Buddha, The Yoga of Relationship: See Yourself in Others (excerpt from the Yoga Bible, Sutra 1.33).



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