I’ll Be Back



I’ll be back.  Rather than keep it indefinite, let’s just say I’ll be back in November.  Every now and then I take some down time.  It’s one of my renewal patterns.  It’s partly why I like doing projects and why I like the change of seasons.  Great down time, helps me with great up time.  I remember Deepak Chopra once saying something like the child sleeps so well, because the child plays so hard.

I considered posting during my downtime, but that’s just now how I do my downtime.  Instead, I decided I would post on three things …

3 Things
In the spirit of The Rule of 3, I have 3 things in this post:
1. One Lesson
2. One Story
3. One Ask

One Lesson
I tried to think of the most valuable lesson I’ve ever learned.  I want to share that with you now:

Think the thoughts that serve you.

How do you lead your best life?  A thought at a time.  This is where it all starts.  You’re the thinker of your thoughts.  Each thought can help you spiral up, or it can tear you down.  Your thoughts control how you feel (just try spending a day thinking about the best in your life, then compare that to spending a day thinking of the worst in your life.)  You can be your best coach, or you can be your worst critic.  You probably know how to push your own buttons better than anybody you know.

One of my most empowering questions is, “What’s the next best thing for me to do?”  Usually, I know the answer, and all I have to do, is just do it.  When I don’t know the answer, then the next best thing for me to do is ask.  The trick is asking the right people, and asking the right way.

The secret to thinking the thoughts that serve you is changing the questions you ask yourself.  Instead of asking, “why me?”, ask questions like, “what’s next?” or “what’s my best response?” or “what’s my next best move?”, or “who can I learn from?”  You lead your best life, a thought at a time, shaped by a question at at time.  Now that you know the secret, you’ll catch yourself.  When you catch yourself thinking like a victim, ask yourself empowering questions.  Changing your question, changes your focus.  Changing your focus, changes your life.

One Story
I originally started Sources of Insight to  help anybody be their best in any situation.  I wanted to share the best insights and actions from books, people, and quotes to help everyday people become everyday heroes (one of my mantras is, “exponential results for the underdog.”)  I focus on giving you the best patterns and practices for mind, body, emotions, career, financial, relationships, and fun.  In a nutshell, it’s about sharing the wisdom of the ages, and standing on the shoulders of giants.  Imagine if you had the best answer or the best response for any situation?  It’s all about skilled living.  It’s about a life by design over a life by default.

I’m on my path, but I also know there is so much more to it.  How do I know?  I experienced it.  A few weeks back, I had a dream.  I was at a conference and Sources of Insight was projected on an enormous screen, larger than life.  Only it didn’t look like Sources of Insight, it looked more like a choose your own adventure map.  The closer I got to it, the more I was in it.  It was immersive.  Next thing you know, I was walking through a hall of heroes.  As I passed da Vinci, Socrates, Covey, Bruce Lee and other heroes, I absorbed their super skill. It was like a Vulcan Mind Meld on steroids. It was literally walking in a Wisdom Wonderland.

When I woke up, I remember thinking how harsh it is that we start from scratch.  So much of the best know how is spread over time and space.   It reminded me that it’s not about access to information or more information.  It’s all about useful information.  It’s about cutting to the chase to find the keys to improving mind, body, emotions, career, financial, relationships, and fun.  What you don’t know can hurt you, and what you do know, can help you.

One Ask
I have one ask.  If you use Sources of Insight, share your story with me … How do you use Sources of Insight?   This is your chance to help me influence the future of Sources of Insight.

Photo by richkidsunite.


  1. Hi J.D.,

    I’m reading your posts on a regular basis just for the reason of essential information. I like your style of getting down to the details in a structured way. Telling a story which sums up the contents, sum up the whole contents by listing 3-5 key points and then explaining these topics thoroughly. I think that’s how it should be not only in blog posts but also in newspaper articles, whitepapers, news etc. Nowadays it seems to be quite common to just shout out some rather provoking statements without having to prove their validity. Who shouts often and loud will get heard… That has nothing to do with useful information.

    So go on with your style and keep influencing…

    Best regards,


  2. JD, I always enjoy your ‘source of insight’ posts because they are JUST THAT! 😉 You not only share amazing insights that are relevant in the day to day, but you break-it-down into bite size ‘doable’ loving steps! This is important, and the skill that you have to do this, is what differentiates you in my opinion. It stands out as one of your best features as a person, as a blog! You are a natural leader who invests back in so many of us! I want you to know that I am grateful for you, and the way you have added value to my life, even in the last few months! I wish you all the best, and I’m glad to hear that you are taking a much deserved break! It’s important to refuel yourself first and foremost so that you have plenty brimming over to share later 😉 You will come back refreshed I’m sure!
    Although, it is always good to better ourselves, our blogs etc, I would suggest to keep your style as is, it’s working well I think at least from over here. So maybe you can just include more topics that challenge you further on your journey! In this way you’re always growing on a well-founded platform! Great job! Have fun on your time off! You will be missed! 😉
    Thank you again, for how you have impacted my life in a good way! 😉
    ~Jen Zuniga

  3. JD, a quick post on your blog for today: I really love how you shared ‘Think the thoughts that serve you.’ That is beautiful and yet how often it is the other way around! 😉 Thanks for sharing! Sincerely, Jen

  4. Great post! I’m sorry to hear you’ll be gone for awhile, but I think taking some time is always a good idea. As for how I use Sources of Insight… I come here to read your great articles and learn! You often right about things I haven’t considered before or review books/etc. that I haven’t yet read. I really like coming here for the insights you offer. Hope to see you back soon!

  5. J.D.,
    Have a great one! Come back recharged and post more energizing posts like you do.
    Looking forward to reading more on SoI very soon in November 😉

  6. I liked how you made the empowering question explicit. For me, it sometimes becomes “what will the ‘future me’ be prouder of?”.
    Enjoy your time. There is no such thing as downtime vs uptime, if it is yours.

    I’d love to see you write a book or provide personal mentoring more often. I find stories (biographies, case studies etc) help anchor the patterns in the way us human beings learn. Maybe they are related?

    I would like to see your frames materialize in Things or whatever people use to track their activities and direction, but software to do this is hard to do well and easy to do badly so I would consider it more of a distraction in the portfolio.

    Greetings from Phnom Penh!

  7. What a time for such an ask. A couple of nights ago I was at my first meeting of a new group called, “Re:LIFE The Myth of Motivation,” where part of what I shared there were some of what I’ve read here like, “Version your perfection,” which I found very useful. For me it was a strange meeting as I’m just sort of pouring out various tidbits I get from here and there. It’ll probably be a few more meetings before I see how well that was received. I do know that for once when I was talking and sharing that I wasn’t anxious, sweaty or nervous. It was kind of amazing, especially compared to the previous night where I was with a group and felt sick most of the meeting. Thank you J.D. for sharing so many things.

    Now I can take something new, “Think the thoughts that serve you,” and see how that can be used in what is coming up in my life. May you get some good rest, discover some more awesomeness you didn’t know you had, and come back ready to tell some more tales, share some lessons and make the world a much better place.

  8. JD,

    I’m no one special, but your words of wisdom and inspiration have helped me turn my self-perception around. If there is one thing that I could encourage you with, it would be to continue pouring your heart out to us. I’ve had more than a handful of occasions when simply reading your thoughts have helped me avoid pain or attain a higher level of overall life satisfaction. I know first-hand what kind of a difference that you make in the lives of the ordinary people.

  9. Hi JD,

    Good for you for doing what you feel is right for you. That is awesome.

    Thank you for sharing your dream too. That was a powerful dream and I loved how you described how it felt to be going down that hall.

    As for me, whenever I have read one of you posts, I always have learned something new or seen something that I knew from a different angle. Reading your blog has confirmed certain thoughts or feelings that I have had about life.

    In my experience, our blogs reflect our journey. So I have no doubt that when you return, your blog will reflect where you are at that time. Like you said, we are all on a path.

    Enjoy your downtime! 🙂

  10. Thank you JD.
    One of my joys in life is sharing books and ideas and I often flick on a link to a specific page on your website to friends and family when I think it is apt for a particular person in their current, often challenging, situation. Many comment positively. On a personal level I’m continuing towards self actualization with your assistance. I appreciate the time and thought you put into sharing your points to view.
    Enjoy recharging.

  11. J.D,
    Congratulations! You have organized a fantastic one year anniversary blog, pregnant with a wealth of knowledge. Behind the pro-form simplicity, extremely serious things are elegantly dealt with and I sense that you seem to be never satisfied enough,and stop doubting that things
    are not what they initially seem, but what they really are(Mysterious and challenging).
    I predict for you a great future ahead, but please never abandon your fans that truly need you
    and which you manage to inspire, by skillfully using the art of facilitating spin off sparks, that facilitate our latent creativity. This is a gift to be admired.
    Our normal approaches to analyzing problems are usually adequate for dealing with 90 % of
    our problems, if having been normally educated. It’s the other 10 % -the big problems, the ones that matter most –where these normal approaches are unlikely to give us a better solution. All of us want to make sound, effective decisions in our professional and private lives, but that’s not easy when the problems we face are complex and manifold. And in the pell-mell pace of modern living, we usually don’t have the time or patience to seek the best solutions .The crushing necessity to make the problem” go away now” makes us receptive to any solution that will provide even temporary relief from an oppressive situation. In this pressure cooked atmosphere it is difficult to fully resolve, much less fully understand, the problems that confront us. We therefore tend to make do partial solutions that justify, not altogether incorrectly, as the best we could do under the circumstances.
    That is where I see J.D., walk in after a good downtime and start making his dreams come true, walking us out of our often “closed systems of thought. “
    From this point on, it would be rather easy for us to reason about “Happiness.”:
    – X : Are you happy at this very moment?
    -Y :In one way ,yes, in another way, no.
    -X : Can you be more explicit?
    -Y :Yes, I have just heard the first really convincing argument for the immortality of the soul. Now I know for sure that I will survive my bodily death. This makes me happy. On the
    Other hand, my steak is overdone.

  12. Hi JD

    I do wish to leave you with a thought during your time away time.

    Your vision for this blog has touched many, many people in ways that only endless hours of stories will reveal.

    You views and insights are what make it so unique, although you stand on the shoulders of giants, consider yourself in that league also. I contemplate numerous hours on your posts and one thing is for sure, you truly give to help other human beings and it is refreshing and inspiring to have sources of insight blog infuse your incredible selflessness in each and every word.

    Please do enjoy your time off, but also remember that you are more than your blog and there is a lot of people out there that drink from your fountain of wisdom and unconditional giving and such a calling don’t come easy, but will provide you access to wisdom, knowledge and understanding that surpass even the greatest minds among us.

    Keep up this great work of art and inspiration, but ultimately your heart will guide you where you should be going to next.


  13. JD,
    i came across your site from a regular forward from one of my seniors. from then on, i have my own subscription. To me Sources of Insight is Sources of Inspiration.
    I use it for the following purposes
    1. To hone my soft skills at work and at personal life
    2. to learn and understand lot of new concepts and theories and their application to life.
    3. To find out good books for reading
    4. to apply the learnings in my life. For e.g the 3 thinking techniques that you had put adorns my cubicle wall and i try to use i as much as possible and i guess the meetings are becoming more meaningful. and also the article on discussion, debates and conversation. it was an eye opener of sorts i should say.

    sources of Insight is my first reading of the day followed by the blogs in harvardbusiness.org.

    there are some interesting insights there as well and one of my favorite writer there is Rosabeth Moss Kanter who is called a ‘change master’. I am sure you would have come across her writings.

  14. I use this blog for the positive energy place it is.

    When I first came here from http://www.bloggingwithoutablog.com I wasn’t sure if you were for business people only but I soon learned that anyone looking for good general ife motivation will find it here.

    And of course, I really like you as a person J.D. and I consider you a friend, as do lot of other bloggers who’ve come to know you.

    We’ll miss you but honor and respect your decision to take a relaxing break. Enjoy!

  15. Hi JD .. I’m afraid I’m not going to be of much value as to decision making for the future ..

    but I will be around, in whatever guise your intuition takes you. I like your style and sense of simplicity .. I like to read your thoughts and ideas ..

    All the best with your November mini break and muller over .. I know the best decision will come through –

    Hilary Melton-Butcher
    Positive Letters Inspirational Stories

  16. Great things start from scratch. Not forgetting that even better things follow with a good time of rest! 🙂

  17. I use Sources of Insight to give me a fresh take on my life. I particularly like when you break down an author’s perspective in bite size chunks. I feel that I can always use some idea in a future blog post of mine.

    I look forward to your return.

  18. Hi J.D.

    I hope you’re enjoying your time off.

    For me, Sources of Insight and your great works, makes me look at life a little differently. You remind me to ask myself those pertinent questions which in turn, reveal different answers and results.

    I can’t think of a way you can improve this site. So I’ll just say, “Just keep doing what you’re doing”, as you do it so well.

  19. J.D.
    Wishing you much rest & inspiration during your downtime….I linked to your blog w/in last 3-4 months & have gotten so much personal insight from your thoughts & writings. You have driven me back to library to read books I probably would not have found on my own. I am one of many of the “laid off” in this country & your blog has been a huge help in getting back on my path & staying there. Your quote “Think the thoughts that serve you” brought tears to my eyes & joy to my heart. As others have written, you will return from your hiatus renewed, refreshed, & those who linger here will be caught again in your enticing web. Take care.

  20. I come here because you really take personal development to a higher level. You have a deep knowledge of self improvement, business and life and Sources of Insight is an incredible resource for inspiration, motivation and just plain understanding of what it is to be human. Thank you for sharing it with us.

    Your dream was incredible. Interesting that you say we start from scratch as there is some belief that we don’t and that our intuition and knowledge is passed onto us in our genes. Maybe you really are related to some of those leaders or at least come from a wise lineage?

    Have a great break, I know you’ll enjoy recharging, relaxing and rejuvenating. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that you’ll come back better than ever.

  21. J.D,
    I ran into a quote , dealing with leadership, that according
    to the best of my knowledge corresponds with the philosophy and personal development understandings that are so popular in our favorite blog.So here it is for everyone to wind their watch, following the new emerging requirements:
    “I don’t think there’s some magic trick here. I think I’ve got a good nose for talent, so I hire really good people. And I’ve got a pretty healthy ego, so I’m not scared of hiring the smartest people, even when they’re smarter than me. And I have a low tolerance of nonsense and turf battles and game-playing, and I send that message very clearly. And so over time, I think, people start trusting each other, and they stay focused on mission, as opposed to personal ambition or grievance. If you’ve got really smart people who are all focused on the same mission, then usually you can get some things done.”

    Barack Obama, on leadership.

  22. J.D.

    I recently stumbled upon this website; I think I reached here from your blog. And I just got stuck to it. There is so much of wisdom which is been captured on this website, it would take ages to assimilate it. I have yet to cover most of the articles. One thing I noticed on this site, is even though have mentioned you wished to cover even “Finance” there is only one article on “Finance”. I would like to recommend a book “The Richest Man in Babylon” by George S. Clason on “Finance”. Official book website is at http://www.richest-man.com/

  23. Wow – thanks for the great feedback, everyone!

    I’m back from my epic adventure.

    I’ll be reviewing your feedback and using it to tune and prune my approach.

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