Blue Cat Takes a Class

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Blue Cat (and his scribe) signed up for WordPress’ Blogging 201 course, which is going to help them increase traffic to their blogs and build their blog brands. One of Blue Cat’s first assignments was to write down some goals for his blog – so here they are:

     1. Have 100 hits per week by June 1st
     2. Post 1 time a week in April and 2 times a week in May and June
     3. Create a weekly feature that links to his scribe’s blog on TheNewStrategist.com by May 15th

Blue Cat could use your help – especially with the first goal. Although he’s updating his site theme and blogging more, he would appreciate more readers. So – if you know anyone who would enjoy reading what Blue Cat has to say, please let them know where they can find this blog.

Blue Cat is looking forward to learning more ways to improve his blog, so stayed tuned for some exciting changes. And let him know what you think of his new site theme and if it looks good on the computer or mobile device you’re using.

Blue Cat says “Thanks” in advance!

(c) William P Doyle  2014  All Rights Reserved

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Blue Cat and New Year Resolutions

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Blue Cat’s family’s home teachers came by today. (Wondering what home teachers are? They’re folks from our church who visit once a month with a lesson, and who you can call when you need help with something. Blue Cat thinks they’re very cool.) They gave a lesson on starting anew – since that’s what people (and crocheted cats) think about at the beginning of a new year. And they talked about trees.

Well – actually about planting trees. The topic of the lesson was “when is the best time to plant a tree?” or when is the best time to start a new habit or start trying to improve yourself. Blue Cat scratched his head about this for a while, but then the home teachers gave him the answer (from an old proverb): “The best time to plant a tree is 20 years ago. The second-best time is now.”

In other words, Blue Cat learned that we need to start early to reap the benefits of a plan – it takes a while for trees to grow and habits to form. But he also learned that we can’t just give up if we didn’t start early – now is the best to to start becoming the person we want to be. We can decide now and then move towards our goal. We shouldn’t wait for the perfect time or let discouragement delay us – because if we keep waiting, we won’t get to where we want to be.

So Blue Cat is starting his improvement plan now, and you should too. Here’s a picture to help you remember – you can’t have avocados unless you get that seed into the dirt. So plant that seed – start that effort to become what you want to be – and think how happy you’ll be that you did. 

You can't have an avocado unless you plant the seed...

You can’t have an avocado unless you plant the seed…

Want to read the whole lesson on “The Best Time to Plant a Tree?” Click here.

© William P Doyle, Jr  2014  All Rights Reserved

Blue Cat Lives His Dream

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Blue Cat went to the Colorado Renaissance Festival last Saturday. He was really excited to go, because one of his dreams is to be a knight and be the one to save a princess. Of course, he realizes this is impossible, since he lives in modern times and is just a small stuffed cat. Or is it?

First, he got to have his picture taken with the Lady Scribesdottir (yes, there’s some Scandinavian blood in the family), which let him pretend to be a knight:

Blue Cat always wanted to be a knight!

Blue Cat always wanted to be a knight!

He then  got to see a lot of great shows (his favorite was the juggler who was also an acrobat and fire-eater), and he got to see some knights do some jousting and sword fighting.

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Blue Cat dreams of being a knight…

But then he really did get to save a damsel in distress! A beautiful princess (who looked a lot like Snow White) got really bored waiting for the jousting to begin, so Blue Cat played with her until the show started. And that made things a lot more fun for both her and her family…

Blue Cat saves the day!

Blue Cat saves the day!

Going to the festival was a great experience for Blue Cat. Besides having a lot of fun, Blue Cat discovered something important about himself. He found out that you can make your dreams come true. You can be a knight and save the day (if that’s your dream) even when you’re just a small stuffed cat. You just have to look for opportunities to help others, and not be afraid to do something outside your comfort zone. (Check out this blog for Blue Cat’s previous experience with the young princess.) He may not have a sword or armor or a title, but Blue Cat ended up saving the day – and so could you!

And don’t forget to go to the Colorado Renaissance Festival (weekends through August 4th in Larkspur, Colorado) for a great time!

© William P Doyle, Jr  2013  All Rights Reserved

Blue Cat Discovers that “There’s Always a Bigger Cat”

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Blue Cat was feeling a little inadequate today because of a new cat in the neighborhood. Blue Cat sees himself as pretty successful and very happy, but then he saw this guy putting in a new storm drain down the street…

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Meet Yellow Cat…

At first Blue Cat felt bad because he wasn’t as big or strong as his new neighbor, but then he remembered what one of his favorite authors, Dr. Alan Weiss, says about comparing your success to others. “There’s always a bigger boat,” says Dr. Weiss, meaning that if you measure your success by how the things you have compare to others’, you’ll always be disappointed. And Blue Cat thinks that applies to personal capabilities as well.

Blue Cat knows he will never be able to dig giant trenches or lift concrete storm drain sections, but he also knows that’s he’s happy and successful in his own way. He has a loving family, a very popular blog (well, at least you’re reading it!), and a great job pointing out interesting things to others. Could he be stronger or bigger? Yes, but there will always be a bigger cat…

So the next time you feel low because there’s someone out there that’s better at something than you are, just remember that such will always be the case. Instead, focus on what you do well, improve where you can, and take pride in being the best you can be. That’s what Blue Cat does!

He is, however, thinking that a yellow tie would be great for Christmas.

© William P Doyle, Jr  2012  All Rights Reserved

Blue Cat Discovers the Meaning of Life

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Today Blue Cat was looking for one of his creator’s old cookbooks so he could make popcorn truffles for Family Home Evening snack. He was in a real hurry, but he didn’t find the cookbook. He did, however, discover something about life in general…

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It’s not with the other cookbooks…

What Blue Cat discovered is that sometimes what you’re doing becomes more important than the goal, and that it never pays to be in too much of a hurry.

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It’s not with the pet supplies, either…

After a while he could have gotten frustrated, but the search became even more interesting than the cookbook.

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Wow – there are a lot of interesting spices to try…

Although sometimes life can get a little dangerous…

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Why is it so dark all of a sudden?

But he discovered hidden treasures…

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Look! TWO boxes of fudge brownie mix!

… and he got reacquainted with some long lost friends.

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“So – a sock monkey, a cat, and a bear went into a shawarma restaurant…”

In the end, he found something just as good as popcorn truffles.

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Cookies and hot chocolate – I think that will do!

So remember what Blue Cat learned today – life is a journey, not a race. So take time to enjoy the journey, and don’t be so focused that you miss the interesting sidelights that are all around you. And remember that sometimes you need to keep the bigger vision in mind and improvise on how to measure success.

At least that’s what Blue Cat thinks!

© William P. Doyle, Jr.  2012  All rights reserved

Blue Cat Finds His Way

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Back in the olden days (when Blue Cat’s scribe was the chief of plans for an unnamed government agency), we used to plan for the future with “roadmaps” – a strategic plan that laid out where we were, where we were going, and how to get there. But that doesn’t work anymore, because the environment changes so frequently and so fast that a roadmap is out of date almost as soon as it’s written. But Blue Cat has found a better way…

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Blue Cat focuses on his “true north”

Blue Cat figures out where to go next using his vision and mission statements – things that tell him his goal and what’s important to him. They’re like a compass and a set of guidebooks – it doesn’t matter how the terrain changes, they always point to where he wants to go and give him options for along the way. (Yes, Blue Cat knows that a compass always points North, and that he probably doesn’t want to just go north, but it’s a metaphor he’s comfortable with.) That way he can overcome “roadblocks,” deal with detours, and take advantage of cool opportunities along the way. Instead of an inflexible roadmap, he has tools to point him in the right direction and information to help him on his way.

So go and do the same. Let Blue Cat know what you’ve done or if you have questions on how to do it by leaving him a comment below.

Good luck finding your own way!

© William P. Doyle, Jr.  2012

Blue Cat Does the Impossible

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Sometimes things we want seem impossible. Whether it’s to grow you business by 50% or lose those 20 extra pounds, you can’t seem to get to where you want to be. Blue Cat had a goal like that – he wanted to meet the most famous of mythological creatures – Bigfoot. He knew lots of people had tried, but no one ever had. But, being the strategist that he is, Blue Cat made a plan…

First, Blue Cat had to engineer a solution that would get him what he wanted. He needed a search of a remote, wooded area – but one that he could get to easily. It would help if Bigfoot had been sighted there before. And he needed a way to lure the big guy into the open. His design – a search of the Pikes Peak National Forest around the Peak. It was fairly remote (you have to pay to get on the road, so that cuts down on the undedicated), easy to get to (Blue Cat lives in Colorado Springs and his scribe owns a big truck), and there have been reports of Bigfoot in that area. And he had a secret weapon to make Bigfoot feel safe to come out, as you’ll see later.

Next, he had to put together a team to help him find the elusive, hairy giant. (Blue Cat doesn’t move very fast on his own, and he’s a little short to be driving by himself.) He did that by making their goals match his vision – they wanted a trip to Pikes Peak, and he wanted to search the mountain forests. He then had to make sure they had the resources they needed – plenty of gas in the truck and plenty of battery in the cell phones (for documentation). And he needed to keep things under control – watching the time so there was plenty of light, and making sure his driver didn’t speed on the winding Pikes Peak Highway.

The result – success!

Blue Cat and the Big Guy

Blue Cat achieved his goal – and made a new friend – because he had a clear vision of what he wanted, expressed it in an audacious goal, and created a plan to make it happen. He also managed the execution of the plan so it would succeed (he saw the truck was low on gas and so he made his driver stop for more) and his design took into account both the environment (finding Bigfoot where he was) and an innovative approach to getting him to overcome his shyness (note the sign by the new friends).

You and I can do the same if we think like strategists and remember to lead, manage, and engineer.

So what “impossible” things do you want to do?

© William P. Doyle, Jr.  2012