MORE: A New Philosophy for Exceptional Living – OUT NOW!

Posted by Alyson Jones.

It’s a “BOOK”! Last night I launched my first book, M.O.R.E. A New Philosophy for Exceptional Living. The celebration was the culmination of months of writing, rewriting, and reworking often late in the evening, and always on a tight deadline.

Writing this book was much like giving birth (and I had twins)! The process of writing, editing and working with a publishing company was incredible and full of learning opportunities. I plan to share some insights and tips in a series of blog posts later this month. Watch for them!

How to Manage Anger Instead of Avoiding Anger: An Honest Conversation

Posted by Alyson Jones.

Let’s have an honest conversation about anger.  Many people try to avoid conflict and see anger as a negative emotion.  Even the word anger can bring up anxiety and avoidance in people.  However, anger is just like any other emotion as it has both a constructive and a destructive side.  Anger can fuel us and focus our energy.  Anger can let us know when a boundary has been crossed.  But if it is left unresolved and unmoved it can turn into destructive anger or rage that can harm others and ourselves.

Without movement, anger can simmer or explode.  Simmering anger and resentment can become bitterness, and I believe that bitterness is one of the least attractive traits in a human being. We do not want to connect with a person who is bitter and angry; it sucks out our energy to the point where we start to avoid that person.

Forget Idealism! Embrace Realistic Optimism!

Posted by Alyson Jones.

Idealism can get in the way of living an exceptional life.  It has struck me that the most disillusioned people I have met were the ones who based their choices on a romantic and idealistic view of the world.  Each decision was approached with such good intentions and great hopes.  This was going to be the best marriage, the best friend, the best job, the best child and the best experience ever.  The idealist starts out so high and then falls so far.

The MORE Philosophy is a way of living that creates movement, utilizes opportunities and pays attention to the reality checks so that a truly exceptional life can be lived.  Although I encourage a positive outlook on life, there are reality checks that need to be accepted if you are interested in living a truly exceptional life.  In order to deal with reality and live by the MORE philosophy we need to be disillusioned from our idealistic dreams and superficial desires so that we can sink our teeth into the real world where we can experience real satisfaction. Reality checks ground us in our life, but we do not want to become hardened, pessimistic and disillusioned. It is only within the real world that we can experience real satisfaction.  There will be things we need to compromise on, but rather than suffer from guilt and disappointment the best compromise it to let the idealism go with as much grace as possible and move towards “realistic optimism”.

The Big Lie: An Honest Conversation about Grasping Opportunities and Reality Checks

Posted by Alyson Jones.

There is a great big lie out there, and nobody really wants to talk about it. Our North American society in particular, has groomed a whole generation of people with this lie. We look at “the American Dream” which promises that anyone can accomplish a dream if he/she works hard enough and tries hard enough. We are told we live in a land of opportunity, and if you are strong enough to grasp the opportunity then you can be anything you want to be and succeed. I believe strongly in grasping the opportunities in our lives, but I also believe that we need to pay attention to the reality checks and which opportunities are meant for us to pursue. There is truth and value in working hard to accomplish our goals. In order to achieve our goals we do need to pay attention to the opportunities in front of us. Opportunity is a core principal of the MORE philosophy but the lie is in telling our young people that they can be anything they want to be in this world. Hard work can pay off, but not everybody can be anything they want to be, nor should they be.

Learning & Growing from your Mistakes

Posted by Alyson Jones.

There is a lot of focus on trust and honesty in relationships. This all sounds great but what does it really mean? I believe that the best connections are those that feel authentic and real. I encourage people to hold onto who they are and speak their truths in relationships, but this type of honesty should not be an excuse for brutal criticism of another nor is it meant to be an excuse to behave poorly. We are much better at pointing out the flaws and failings of others, and in our desire to protect ourselves we quickly point the finger at the other person. There is not a lot of growth in this type of approach to life, communication and relationships. We might feel that we were right, or the other person wronged us in some way, but we might also feel very lonely and disconnected from those with whom we would like to connect.

We can move towards an exceptional life if we can take an approach that requires us to look at our own conduct and then learn from our own mistakes and missteps. It is also beneficial to learn from the mistakes of others (and some people are able to learn by observation), but there is no doubt that the most powerful learning of all is from our own experience. It is also the most powerful challenge. How do we preserve our sense of worth and dignity and learn from our mistakes? How do we preserve another’s dignity in the face of their mistakes? And how can we all learn from each other?