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Terry's Original Quote Keepers

A minute of silence can be more productive than an hour of debate.
~Terry Braverman

Arrest yourself when under the influence of a negative thought.
~Terry Braverman

Give me levity, or give me death!
~Terry Braverman

An intimate relationship is the ultimate training.
~Terry Braverman

Clarity of purpose is the ultimate decongestant.
~Terry Braverman

Faith keeps the voice of fear out of your ear.
~Terry Braverman

Peace begins between your ears.
~Terry Braverman

Peace begins between your ears.
~Terry Braverman

Be patient, before you become a patient.
~Terry Braverman

Over-analysis causes paralysis.
~Terry Braverman

May the 'farce' be with you.
~Terry Braverman

Plan some time to be spontaneous.
~Terry Braverman

Laugh at yourself, and you will always be amused.
~Terry Braverman

Imagination sharpens the dull blade of routine.
~Terry Braverman

Inquisitiveness cures boredom; nothing cures inquisitiveness.
~Terry Braverman

Feed your soul, starve your worries.
~Terry Braverman

Avoid time in the Tower of Babble.
~Terry Braverman

Release any false sense of insecurity.
~Terry Braverman

Life is a fantasy, made real by our thoughts.
~Terry Braverman

Patterns of behavior can be interrupted and changed instantaneously. When people lock into recurring patterns of negative behavior, it may serve them better to have someone interrupt the pattern rather than sympathize with them, which reinforces the attention they inherit for acting out that pattern. Program interrupts (or pattern breakers, as I sometimes call them) can short circuit the pattern and inspire a more resourceful, positive state. An outrageous act, like sticking a clown nose on their face and having them look in a mirror, can transform the mood and circumstance.

The year was 1991. Like now, America was mired in a recession. I was airborne for New York to tape some more shows at Comedy Central and ply my stand-up act, but clubs around the country were closing faster than a Bruce Lee spin move. My mother would urge me to get “back up,” meaning a regular job or a wealthy sugar mama. I would assure her that I still had my newspaper route from when I was 12 years old.

Sitting next to me on the flight was the head of a collections agency. He looked like a man tied to a railroad track. I listened to his tales of woe and frustration over the pile of outstanding accounts confronting him. I asked him if he would show me a copy of the letter his company sends out for collections. It was typically heavy-handed in substance. I suggested he try sending letters with funny relevant quotes or cartoons. He thought I was crazy, but we had plenty of flight time left so we brainstormed a few ideas. I thought of one cartoon with a caption that said, “You’re twelve months past due. This means we’ve carried you three months longer than your mother did.” As we parted company I doubted he would use any of the ideas, but three months later I received a surprise call from him, and he was excited. He used some of the quotes and cartoons. Amazingly, his collections increased by 15%! Yes, there is life after debt.

TURN IN THE DIRECTION OF THE SKID. In the business world, the wheels of change are burning rubber. A permanent job has become an oxymoron. Once-potent corporate giants are staggering around on a lean diet to survive and thrive. Companies synonymous with gold watches and large pension funds are either laying off thousands of people, being bought out or disappearing from the corporate landscape.

Due to rapid changes in technology, restructuring, and global competition, you can’t rely upon the status quo. Virtually all of us will be between jobs or businesses, perhaps frequently, during our work lives. We need to continuously recreate and reinvent ourselves and our skills. It is important to detach our sense of self-worth from transitional circumstances and maintain perspective on who we are by enhancing our sense of “self-mirth.”

SMOOTH OPERATOR


“It has to be surgically removed. There is no other way, if you wish to prevent a more serious consequence from arising.”

While in Panama, I visited a family doctor for a routine check-up. The mysterious protrusion next to the prostate was no longer a mystery. It was a hernia. The words cut through me like a scalpel. At 57, this would be my first-ever surgery as an adult. I take excellent care of my body. How can this happen? Well, it can. Still, it was a shock.

A week later, I’m lying on a bed in the pre-op room with my Panamanian girlfriend (when the nurse wasn’t there). This doesn’t need to be all grim, I reasoned. When the nurse returned, mi amor hopped off, I pulled a harmonica from my pocket, and blew through a repertoire of tunes. Nurses in the vicinity smiled and applauded.

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