***An idea was given to me by a member of our family that it may be helpful if I were to share with my grandchildren a few "Notes from Grandpa" which would include some of life's critical issues we all must face at some point in our lives. This has afforded me the opportunity to share some of my experience and knowledge to those very grandchildren I love so dearly and help them to grow to their full potential as human beings. The notes are a series of different topics that I feel are important to share with my family and feedback or suggestions are encouraged.

Grandfather's as they grow old, are supposed to be filled with wisdom based on their past experiences and knowledge. I'm not certain I measure up to that ideal, but I do have some "gems" I would like to share because I want you to be all you can be in your life.

Coming from a coaching, teaching, mentoring, and advising backround in my professional career, satisfaction for me has been gained when I feel another person is growing because of their relationship with me. Consequently, I have spent a great deal of time in my life reading and searching for ways to better understand who I am, and what I can do to make myself a better human being.

What follows are numerous quotes, sayings, suggestions, and profound statements that have guided me in the past. They are taken from a number of sources that could be meaningful to you over time.

From David McNalley's book 'Even Eagles Need a Push', he states that three of life's most important questions are: "Why are you here? What do you have to contribute that will make a difference? What do you believe in?"

Holocost survivor Victor Frankel in 'Man's Search for Meaning' made this profound statement: "Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: The last of human freedoms - to choose one's attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one's own way".

Other quote's from Frankel's book worth pondering are as follows:

* "All human development is determined first and foremost by one's own thinking".
* "Happiness results from the daily choices and decision we make in our lives".
That means being involved with and accomplishing that which results in the feeling we want to experience most of the time.
*Winning (happiness) is assessed simply by how you feel about life and how you feel about life is determined by what your life is all about.
*A key characteristic of successful, happy, fulfilled people is that they love what they do because what they do is an expression of their gifts and talents.

These profound statements can be useful in clarifying personal issues each of us have to contend with during our life span. The most interesting to consider:
* Who am I?
* What is the pupose of my life?
* Why do I exist?

In responding to these questions one can start to better understand the meaning of their life and its potential. For example, to achieve a feeling of success it is important that one is committed to something that transends oneself. Emptiness is generally brought on by a lack of puspose in life, an absence of a compelling reason to live. It is related to a lack of connectiveness.

Such reflection leads to a need to conduct a search beyond your own mind into your heart and soul because the soul is that which pulls us toward a meaningful purpose in our lives.

In closing I must tell you that I have always believed that the purpose of life is to be a growing, contributing human being. Secondly, people perform at their best when contributing their talents to something they belive in.

These are just a few nuggets from an old mountain man that you may find useful. Remember that committment is the parent of determination. So, decide what you want from life, what you would like to acheive, then enjoy the trip and thank God for the life you have been given.

Lots of Love,


Author's Bio: 

Dr. Gessner is a former football coach and teacher in Addison, Michigan and served as a sales manager for two national corporations. Dr. Gessner was Associate Director of the University of Michigan Extension Service and was Dean of Continuing Studies at the University of Nebraska - Lincoln. He has conducted workshops on interpersonal relationships throughout the United States.

Masters Degree, University of Michigan
PhD, Michigan State University