2525329726_4bc68892c1_oNational Medal of Honor Day on March 25 is dedicated to all Medal of Honor recipients.

National Day Calendar says this:

“Created in 1861, the Medal of Honor is the United States of America’s highest military honor. It is awarded only to US military personnel, by the President of the United States in the name of Congress, for personal acts of valor above and beyond the call of duty.”

The Medal of Honor has been awarded to 3,493 of the country’s soldiers, sailors, airmen, Marines and coast guardsmen.. There are currently 79 living Medal of Honor recipients and 19 recipients have received two Medals.

According to The Veterans Administration blog, the average age of recipients at the time of the Medal of Honor action:

  • All services: 26 years old
  • U.S. Army recipients: 25 years old
  • U.S. Air Force recipients: 33 years old
  • U.S. Coast Guard recipients: 23 years old
  • U.S. Navy recipients: 29 years old
  • U.S. Army Air Corps: 27 years old
  • U.S. Marine Corps: 25 years old

Play with more data yourself at the Medal of Honor dashboard.

Let’s remember these brave individuals who performed selfless, personal acts of valor above and beyond the call of duty

And, let us also be inspired by their examples to show courage by going above and beyond what might be expected of us in our every day lives.


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Seven Benefits of Saying “No”


Do you ever have a hard time saying “No”.  I do. I fear missing out on an opportunity or disappointing people. However, saying “No” does not have to be a negative. There are many positive reasons to use that short two letter word.

  1. Saying “No” now allows me to say “YES” to something better later. Good is often the enemy of the best.
  2. Saying “No” allows someone else to say “Yes”. Teammates are able to experience developmental opportunities when I say no. This requires humility and awareness that I may not be the best person for the job. It requires that I know my own strengths and those of my teammates.
  3. Saying “No” is a reminder that I am not indispensable.
  4. Saying “No” is a “Yes” to a more healthy lifestyle. It keeps me from the stress of over commitment or ever extending myself.
  5. Saying “No” is saying “Yes” to the power of being more in control of my life.
  6. Saying “No” is saying “Yes” to new opportunities I might not have known existed. Once I am more available, I  find other opportunities more in line with my passions and gifting.
  7. Saying “No” gives me time to do whatever I have put on the back burner. (Writing that book, blogging, train for a 5K, give attention to a relationship or project that needs my energy this month, etc.

What helps you say “No”?

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Photo credit: kitface via Foter.com / CC BY-NC-SA


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Don’t Make Gratitude About Yourself

In a earlier post on “Boost Your Resilience with Gratitude”, I shared a tip from HBR Management Tip of the Day. While research shows the transforming power gratitude in our personal lives, our relationships and our organizations, gratitude is not all about us.

Heidi Grant Halvorson has a helpful and practical tip to not make gratitude about us. This tip appeared in HBR Management Tip of the Day. You can subscribe here to get their daily tips.

gratitude not about you.png

Adapted from “Stop Making Gratitude All About You,” by Heidi Grant Halvorson

Follow Heidi Grant Halvorson on Twitter here.

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Boost Your Resilience with Gratutide

What if you could decrease anxiety, reduce symptoms of illness while improving the quality of your sleep and building emotional resilience?

According to some studies, gratitude can help.  I had been thinking about starting a Gratitude Journal, and this tip provided the final encouragement to give me lift. At night before I go to sleep, my goal is to write down three things I am grateful for. And it literally takes just a few minutes. But, be warned: You may not be able to stop at just three items!

Here is the very practical and easy to do tip for you that I learned from HBR Management Tip of the Day. You can subscribe here to get their daily tips.


Adapted from “How to Evaluate, Manage, and Strengthen Your Resilience,”  by David Kopans

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Today we celebrate freedom in the United States. We like freedom. Freedom is great! Many have given their lives to protect our freedom for which I am grateful. I did a quick search on books about freedom, and there is a library of them:

There are books about financial freedom, emotional freedom, freedom in health and wealth, freedom from attitudes, habits and self-destructive behaviors. Freedom in relationships. Freedom from addictions. Freedom from guilt, shame, blaming. Freedom to forgive. Freedom to pursue our dreams. Freedom.

We value it personally. I value freedom. That is why I never really liked religion. It was a bunch of do’s and dont’s. A list of rules I had to follow. Far from giving me freedom, it felt like a moral straight jacket.

I have experienced something surprisingly different with Jesus. Would it surprise you that Jesus came to announce liberty and freedom, to open the prison to all who are bound? Does it blow your mind that Jesus came not to judge and condemn, but to announce grace and the Lord’s favor towards us? Give them roses instead of ashes, messages of joy instead of doom, a thankful heart instead of a faint spirit? Not just freedom, but comfort to those who mourn, care for their needs and heal the broken?  (Read it here). That was all a surprise to me! And this is exactly what so many in our world need right now. The families of the victims of the Pulse shooting in Orlando need it. The families of victims in Istanbul Turkey airport bombing need it. The families of the 14 drowned kids in Karelia, Russia need it. The veterans with PTSD and their families need it. Girls sold into human trafficking and sex slavery desperately need it. People all over the world need freedom, comfort, care and healing.

We all need it because we are all human and suffer frailty, brokenness and loss. We all need it because we thought life would have been kinder to us; that we would be further down the road and a little better by now. More loving and less petty. More kind and less resentful. Kinder to ourselves and others and little critical and harsh. More grace and less guilt. More feelings of competency and adequacy and less feelings of shame and not being enough.

We need all that. We need freedom. I need freedom. I need Jesus.

One of the greatest military commanders and kings of all time was a man named David. He needed freedom and everything that comes with it. He exclaimed,

“I run the path of Your commands, for You have set my heart free.”

“I will walk at liberty, for I seek your precepts.”

David, like you and me often found himself imprisoned by his selfish ways. He learned that true freedom is not found in doing what I want, when I want it; true freedom comes by yielding to God’s way.

Happy 4th of July everyone. Freedom!

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