Category Archives: Social Issues

“Muaaaahhh!”

Share A condensed version of a story back in September 2010, with a new one thrown in at the end: Since I started this blog five months ago, I’ve talked a lot about personal experiences in hopes of providing a source of inspiration to others. I’ve also talked of religious topics and how those principles have been applied in my own life. Now I’d like to talk of one that’s been on my mind for some time, an economic topic by definition, but one that I think we all experience in our daily lives. In doing so, I’ll try to give some real-life examples so you get a sense of what I’m speaking of. Wikipedia defines “Diminishing Returns” this way: “In economics, diminishing returns (also … Continue reading

Posted in Economic Worries, Uncategorized, Job Loss, Life Coaching, Self-Improvement, Social Issues, Work & Career | Leave a comment

Go for the Gusto in LIFE – My Truth

Share I’m on a mission. A mission to HELP others. Since the launch of a tab on my Facebook page called “Go for the Gusto in LIFE!” on September 1st, 2011, I’ve received some feedback from some of you, the overwhelming majority of which has been positive. Still, there’s a sense that the concept I’m proposing about “new ways of living and new ways of thinking” has been met with questions, and perhaps some skepticism, as to what my intentions are. This latest chapter in “Ramblings” is intended to answer any questions and dispel any skepticism about my mission. I can assure you, unequivocally; this is NOT a scam, a trick, a game, or whatever one might wish to call it. I don’t operate that … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized, Life Coaching, Self-Improvement, Social Issues | 3 Comments

Cyberspace….Who’s REAL?

Share This is a topic many of us can relate to, especially when it comes to social mediums like Facebook, and to a lesser extent, various “chat rooms” we can find via the internet. It’s also one of particular interest to me, given the vast number of people I interact with on a day-to-day basis on my own Facebook pages. Everyone knows there are people “out there” we can’t trust; predators, scam artists, the list goes on and on. And when you consider that nearly 1/10th of the ENTIRE world’s population, or roughly 750,000,000 MILLION people, have accounts on the world’s most popular site called “Facebook”, the risk is even greater that YOU or ME will encounter some shady characters at one point or another. … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized, Social Issues, Social Media | 2 Comments

A Candid Conversation

Share Are you tired? Tired of your life? Tired of negative news, negative people, your job, your finances, your relationships? Are you scared of what your world has become? OUR world? A world filled with uncertainty, mistrust of others, anger, fear, resentment, cynicism, pride, and egos. All of us know there’s a multitude of sources out there designed to help you; workshops, books, motivational speakers, therapists, the list goes on and on. Most of these “sources” instruct you to follow simple “steps” to get your life back on track, to restore happiness, wealth, peace, and serenity in your life. I’m going to catch flak on this, but I’m here to tell you, NONE of that will help. As long as you continue to think the … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized, Courage, Life Coaching, Self-Improvement, Social Issues, Social Media, Work & Career | 10 Comments

“Huan”, “Maylena”, and ONE Cup of Coffee

Share “We can help others in the world more by making the most of yourself than in any other way.” ~ Earl Nightingale. That’s just one of MANY quotes about the value of helping others. Call it whatever you wish; service above self, help yourself by helping others, it all means the same. If we’re in a “bad place”, one of the BEST ways of helping ourselves is by helping others. More importantly, doing so expecting nothing in return is probably THE most powerful action we can take to make ourselves “feel better.” But it’s SO much more than that. Nearly everyone knows of the movie “Pay it Forward”, the story of a young boy who, as part of a school project, decided to perform … Continue reading

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The Air Purifier and Two Bags of Pistachios

Share This is a story that may seem a little odd to you to fit the “pay it forward” concept, and while it can certainly be thought of as good karma, upon reading it, perhaps your perception will be different. That being kind to someone, by thinking of anyone but yourself, by doing something seemingly small and insignificant, it will come back to you many times over! Earlier this week, Tuesday the 31st of May, my sister remarked that the air purifier I bought for her at Target a few months back simply quit working. No explanation why. It just quit. She found the box in her garage that it came in when I bought it, had placed the purifier in it, and set it … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized, Life Coaching, Paying It Forward, Social Issues | 2 Comments

Rehabilitation? Or Retribution?

ShareEvery now and then something occurs that stirs our passion so much that it takes on an identity by itself. This particular topic brings that passion forth within me with a vengeance and though I will do my best to remain objective and avoid appearing self-serving, it remains a difficult task. I would therefore ask for your patience and indulgence in that regard because of my own very personal and life-altering experience with a subject that is naturally controversial by its very existence in our world. Please also keep in mind that one of the goals with this blog is to give it a “personal touch”, so that its readers can make some sort of connection between the subject matter and their daily lives. Recently, … Continue reading

Posted in Healing Loss (ALL), Substance Abuse, Tragedy, Uncategorized, Social Issues | 1 Comment

Giving “Thanks”

ShareThere’s something different this year about “Thanksgiving.” Today, as I reflect back on past Thanksgiving days, I realize I can’t recall a year when I spent this day with family. And when I say “family”, I mean ANY of my own family. Last year, I spent it alone in Elkhart, Kansas. Literally. I had planned on seeing my children in Tribune but, for reasons not worth mentioning, that didn’t happen. The year before I was in Liberal, Kansas and spent the day with strangers in a place I never dreamed I would be in. The year before that, as well as the one prior, well….I honestly don’t recall the last time it was a “Happy Thanksgiving.” This year, that’s changed. So today, I’m thankful in … Continue reading

Posted in Family Relationships, Uncategorized, Courage, Social Issues | 5 Comments

Instant Gratification & The Simple Things

Share Of the many things I’ve written to date in the first 7 months of existence of this blog and website, one that seems to keep coming to mind is this phenomenon ingrained in our culture known as “instant gratification.” One of the reasons why it resonates deeply in my soul is a result of the recent elections held in our country. It was only two short years ago that our current Commander-in-Chief was hailed as our savior but, because he and his party didn’t deliver NOW, it’s time for a change. And already, after only two short weeks since the election, I’m already hearing and reading its back to business as usual amongst our leaders of every party. It’s really quite sad when you … Continue reading

Posted in Family Relationships, Economic Worries, Uncategorized, Self-Improvement, Social Issues, Work & Career | 5 Comments

Integrity, Vulnerability, & Perfection

ShareThe essence of integrity isn’t just speaking of moral and ethical principles. It’s putting those principles on the table for the entire world to see by virtue of your actions. A microcosm of yourself that others look at. Being brutally honest with yourself, God, and those you love and hold dearest to your heart is one thing. Doing the very same thing with everyone you know and come into contact with is entirely another matter. In the first instance, the truth you see in yourself, what you admit to God, and what you share with people you love the most, affords a level of comfort, safety, and security you simply don’t have in the latter instance. People want the truth. It’s our nature as human … Continue reading

Posted in Romantic Relationships, Family Relationships, Substance Abuse, Uncategorized, Courage, Self-Improvement, Social Issues | 1 Comment

Why Are People Afraid to Speak About God?

ShareNormally, I don’t have an agenda when I write. I go with instincts, writing whatever comes to mind, letting my thoughts flow freely. However, on occasion a topic surfaces that deserves more than that. This one falls into that category. Recently, one of my friends and a follower on my Gusto page on facebook, where I share some of my thoughts and experiences, had this to say when I asked for a topic that people wanted to hear more about: “Why are so many people afraid to speak about GOD? Why are so many people selfish, greedy and full of gluttony?” I believe there are many reasons, but some obvious ones come to mind immediately. Before I jump into this, allow me to expand a … Continue reading

Posted in Healing Loss (ALL), Family Relationships, Uncategorized, Courage, Social Issues, Spirituality | 4 Comments

Giving All You Have

Share“Gus, you always hear it spoken, relationships are 50/50…..I don’t believe it……in my eyes they are 100% / 100%….without that commitment you have nothing……think you can run with that????” That was a private message I received recently from one of the followers of Gusto on Facebook, in response to a question I posed of its readers for a topic to write about. I replied by saying that was a great one since it’s something that hits home for me. At first glance, most people would assume that topic to mean the dynamics of a relationship between two people who are intimately involved. Of course, marriage comes instantly to mind. But my mind wanders and it quickly took me to many other areas of life. When … Continue reading

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“A Change Will Do You Good”

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Posted in Romantic Relationships, Family Relationships, Health Issues, Substance Abuse, Uncategorized, Courage, Social Issues | 6 Comments

Inspiring Others…The Wright Brothers

Share I know a lot has been said about my writing. And not only how I write, but also what I write about. Starting well over a year ago, people from all walks of life began telling me, “Gus, what you write about is inspiring. But it’s more than that. It’s the WAY you write about it. You write like many of us feel but we can’t express it in written form the way you do. And what you have to say does inspire people, more than you probably know.” Recently, I was talking with an old childhood friend of mine from back home in Kansas, a woman I grew up with and went to school with starting when we were in kindergarten. She works … Continue reading

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The Internet, Cell Phones, iPods, Computers, & Facebook – Part II

ShareThis is a re-post of a topic I wrote about this past April and was prompted by an event yesterday. Last night, I left work shortly before 9 p.m. and was almost home when suddenly I realized I’d left my cell phone at work. If something like this has ever happened to you then you know what I felt like next. Naked. And frankly, kind of panicky. It’s not like there’s pay phones on every corner in today’s world like there used to be so I could call the office and see if anyone was still there. What did I do? Turned around and went back. Of course, everyone had left. When I got home, it hit me. I, like so many others, are so … Continue reading

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Freedom

Share September 26, 2008. Day 114 at the Holliday Inn. 116 miles of walking logged so far, 5,775 sit-ups, and 2,020 pushups. By now, the routine is clear. Up at 6:00 a.m. with my plastic bowl and plastic spoon waiting to hear the familiar rattle of keys. First one door, then another, and finally, one more. And there stands one of Doc Holliday’s deputies with morning breakfast; a gallon jug of milk in one hand and a box of cold cereal in the other. Frosted mini-wheats. Every day. Each of us in the “bullpen” stick our little plastic bowls through the “bean hole” to get our breakfast. We sit silently at the steel bench and table and eat, the same place where we play cards, … Continue reading

Posted in Healing Loss (ALL), Substance Abuse, Tragedy, Uncategorized, Courage, Self-Improvement, Social Issues | 1 Comment

Just Be Yourself

Share“Just be yourself.” How many times have all of us heard that one? Think of the times you’ve heard it yourself; a job interview, meeting someone for the first time, a school play, or any time you’ve had to speak in front of others, regardless of who or how many people are around. I’m sure simply hearing those three words causes stomach knots for some of us. Question is, why? Why do people say that to begin with and why does it bother some of us, while there are others who have no problem with it at all? I think the answer lies not in what others think of us but how we feel about ourselves. If the foundation of our soul is based on … Continue reading

Posted in Healing Loss (ALL), Romantic Relationships, Family Relationships, Tragedy, Uncategorized, Courage, Self-Improvement, Social Issues, Spirituality | Leave a comment

“I Can’t”

ShareI Can’t. I can’t do that, I can’t do this. I can’t stop drinking. Can you stop laughing? Do you WANT to? If there’s two words in the English language when, put together, have more of a negative impact on our lives, these two would be it. But think about the end of that first sentence I just wrote. Ever hear somebody say, “I can’t stop laughing!” when they’ve heard something really funny? Do they WANT to, is the question. Same goes the other way around. Don’t say I can’t; say I WANT to get A’s. I WANT to stop spending so much money. I WANT a happy marriage and I WANT a happy life. When I was a junior in high school, I spent … Continue reading

Posted in Tragedy, Uncategorized, Courage, Self-Improvement, Social Issues | 5 Comments

Is It Ever Okay to Lie?

ShareYou’re walking on a sidewalk late at night. It’s dark but there are light posts to guide your way. Suddenly, out of the dark, a man comes running towards you. As he passes he screams, “Save me! He’s trying to kill me!” You look back and see him rush around a corner near a large trash bin where you think he might try to hide. Then, you wheel around because you hear the second man running towards you out of the dark and he looks menacing, like a street gang member or something. He has a gun. He rushes up to you and demands, “Where did he go?!” What do you say? Do you tell him the truth? Or do you lie? Like most people, … Continue reading

Posted in Romantic Relationships, Family Relationships, Uncategorized, Self-Improvement, Social Issues | 13 Comments

Perfection

ShareShakespeare said, “All the world’s a stage, and all the men and women merely players.” He forgot to mention that I was the chief critic. I was always able to see the flaw in every person, every situation. And I was always glad to point it out, because I knew you wanted perfection, just as I did. A.A. and acceptance have taught me that there is a bit of good in the worst of us and a bit of bad in the best of us; that we are all children of God and we each have a right to be here. When I complain about me or about you, I am complaining about God’s handiwork. I am saying that I know better than God. What … Continue reading

Posted in Healing Loss (ALL), Romantic Relationships, Family Relationships, Substance Abuse, Tragedy, Uncategorized, Courage, Self-Improvement, Social Issues, Spirituality | 2 Comments

Law of Diminishing Returns

ShareSince I started this blog five months ago, I’ve talked a lot about personal experiences in hopes of providing a source of inspiration to others. I’ve also talked of religious topics and how those principles have been applied in my own life. Now I’d like to talk of one that’s been on my mind for some time, an economic topic by definition, but one that I think we all experience in our daily lives. In doing so, I’ll try to give some real-life examples so you get a sense of what I’m speaking of. Wikipedia defines “Diminishing Returns” this way: “In economics, diminishing returns (also called diminishing marginal returns) refers to how the marginal production of a factor of production starts to progressively decrease as … Continue reading

Posted in Economic Worries, Uncategorized, Courage, Self-Improvement, Social Issues, Work & Career | Leave a comment

The Power of God & Prayer

I’m sorry, but in order to view this post, you will need to become either a “Subscriber” or a “Member” of this website. Subscribers is a FREE service but with limited access to website content. Members have unrestricted access to all materials. To “subscribe”, click the “Log In” button on the right hand side of any page of this website and follow the simple directions. To activate a “membership”, please visit the “Member Area” tab show in the navigation bar at the top of your screen. Thank you.

Posted in Healing Loss (ALL), Substance Abuse, Tragedy, Uncategorized, Courage, Self-Improvement, Social Issues, Spirituality | 2 Comments

Apathy

ShareFirst off, I want to apologize if this one comes off somewhat negative or pessimistic. However, the reason I’m writing about this topic will hopefully drive home my point about how our world is these days. I’ve seen so much over this lifetime, particularly over the past couple of years and especially in the past few months that leads me to this subject. Everywhere I look I see it; people apathetic about events, circumstances, and even people around them, including their very own families. So much of what our society and each of us have become individually in today’s world is because of events we find so out of our control that we choose to do certain things to shield and insulate ourselves from them. … Continue reading

Posted in Economic Worries, Uncategorized, Self-Improvement, Social Issues, Social Media, Spirituality | Leave a comment

Judging Others & Keeping Emotions In Check

ShareThis topic comes to mind because of recent personal events. Rather than dive in with the details of it, I’ll try to give it a perspective that gives you something to think about and how it might apply to your own lives. When you look at others, particularly someone you’re close to such as a family member or a co-worker, who is having personal issues you have strong opinions about, what do you do? Do you rush in with advice? More importantly, if you do give advice, do you do so with the other person’s feelings first or are you giving it based on your OWN feelings? Many times, we tend toward the latter. After all, we’re human. When we see someone who is having … Continue reading

Posted in Healing Loss (ALL), Romantic Relationships, Family Relationships, Uncategorized, Self-Improvement, Social Issues, Spirituality | Leave a comment

“P L A U G E S”

ShareI remember when I first thought of this acronym. It was about a year ago when I was encountering a lot of anger and resentments from family members about past issues. I could never remember the 7 deadly sins and this acronym helps me to remember them: “PLAUGES” = Pride, Lust, Anger, Gluttony, Greed, Envy, and Sloth. I had to fudge on the U, substituting gluttony instead! When I think of those words though, there’s 2 more that I think should be included as “deadly sins”, fears and resentments. When you look at your own life, ask yourself these questions. When is it when you feel like you’re losing control over your life? What do you FEEL when you don’t have control? And what is … Continue reading

Posted in Healing Loss (ALL), Romantic Relationships, Family Relationships, Economic Worries, Health Issues, Substance Abuse, Tragedy, Uncategorized, Courage, Self-Improvement, Social Issues, Spirituality, Work & Career | 2 Comments