This has been a tough week for many. Devastating is more accurate, and I wish it wasn’t. The town of Paradise California has been destroyed. Families are without homes, jobs, pets and loved ones. The pain and sorrow is strongly felt and many people are lost as to what to do or where to go next. Hopeless is often the word heard.

But the amazing thing about people is that most of us are not truly hopeless. There is sorrow for what is lost and worry for the future, but there is also hope. I have never seen so many people banding together to help others in need than I have in the past week. People donating money, food, clothing, shelter, and even if they have nothing else to give they give their time. People have found a way to give. To give without asking for anything in return. Look at that joy, that compassion, that hope!

As I drive around my city and see the crazy traffic, caused by the influx of people, I hear no horns blaring in anger or frustration. I see people letting others in, I hear of people feeding others, I know of people doing whatever they can just to put a smile on someones face and I am grateful. People are capable of amazing acts of kindness.

Not all our lives are touched by tragedy, but there is a good chance that you know someone who’s life has been. And though you may not be able to do anything for someone who is hurting, you can be a good person and cause no more harm to them. If you can’t help them to a better place, then give them the space to be able to move forward. The last thing I ever want to do is make someone else’s life harder. That is respect.

Respect is so easy that you really don’t have to anything at all. You allow people to be. It’s a judgment free space to be in (or, at least you keep those judgments to yourself). This also includes yourself. You must respect yourself as well as others. Without basic respect for others and ourselves, we fail and we fall and we take others with us.

So as you move through this life I want you to think about what respect is, and how you can always use respect as the base of all your actions. We can always try to do more for ourselves and for others, but we should never do less. To do less is to be less and causes us to receive less.

I know others may not treat you with respect all the time, that is their problem and not yours. It is not your place to put people in their place. You don’t have to defend yourself or make others wrong. Sometimes you have to, respectfully, walk away. What’s the old saying? “If you have nothing nice to say, don’t say anything at all.” Probably shouldn’t roll you eyes either.

Everyday someone has to deal with a struggle. I don’t know if it’s the person who cuts me off in traffic, or the man next to me in the market, or my son’s teacher who lost her home. The only thing I know I can do is be respectful. I can do no less than that. Most of the time I try to do more, but I can sleep well at night knowing I caused no one any (extra) struggle this day. It’s my desire to see everyone act this way. Starting with respect for themselves and then towards others.

I know this blog was a little less light-hearted than usual, but the cloud of smoke is a constant reminder of what others have lost and the needs they still have. I hope that you have found this useful and that you can find it in you heart to help those in need. If not, then please move with respect and maybe a little kindness.

I wish you a day better than the last.

Much love,



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