Do you make assumptions that stop you from taking action?

My message today is to simply wish you a Happy, Peaceful Thanksgiving (or day/evening wherever you are whenever you read this). May it have the soft light and glow that these sunset photos are putting forth.
Sunset in Green Cay Wetlands

The Story and Thoughts  –  Plus a Video for Fun

Recently we’ve had some beautiful sunsets here in South Florida, with lots of beautiful clouds reflecting a wide range and pastel and deep pinks with some orange colors and reds. On the afternoon that I took the pictures above, the sky was cloudless as you see. I made the assumption that it would not be an interesting sunset, but I’d go over to Green Wetlands anyway, planning for a faster walk than usual.

After about five or ten minutes I glanced over at the setting sun and experienced the warmth and richness of it and its glow. I started appreciating the “no clouds” to “distract” from the experience.

I then began to think, “I could have missed this. I wonder how many times I don’t take action because I make the assumption that it won’t produce the results that I want.  ‘So why bother?'”  Of course, no action produces no results.

Fun Video

As contrasted with the above, in the following situation I was told by someone else (the software company) that what I wanted and expected would not work.  I acted anyway and ended up having a lot of fun. I’m sharing it with you so you can have smile along with me.

Tap or click on the screen shot to see the video. It will take you to YouTube. I was “playing” with a Virtual Background, a feature that can now be used with computers that have strong enough processors.The full explanation and how-to is in the video. You can read about it underneath the video on YouTube and grab the Zoom tutorial links from the more information section.

Zoom is the program that I’ve mentioned many times here. One of my favorites, it’s the perfect way to meet with family and friends no matter where they live.

Self-Reflecting Queries

Are there times that you don’t take action because you anticipate that you expectations will be unfulfilled?

I invite you to be in the query and when you catch yourself, take some action anyway. Be open to unexpected delights.

And, though you may be reading this after Thanksgiving here in the States, wherever you are, I extend the following invitation.

When something happens that you don’t want, especially in a relationship, look for some small piece for which you can express gratitude. Take an positive action that might be unexpected by either of you. You may be surprised at how much better you’ll feel.


Please share in the Reply section below, your experiences as related to this post.

The Calm Beauty of Sunrise over the Ocean brings Peace

Sun Rising over the Atlantci
Whether you live in the United States or in another country, you are more than likely one of the countless people who have been experiencing tension and upset regarding the Presidential election in the U.S.

The sole intent of this issue of Treasure Your Life Now/Picture to Ponder is to offer you the gift of time-out and the opportunity to be invigorated AND lulled by the sounds and movement of the ocean as the sun rises through the clouds spreading light above and below.

This past Saturday, I took advantage of the last day before the clock went back and Daylight Savings Time ended, and went to Delray Beach, FL for 7:30 AM.  I was blessed with beauty and richness during my time there and feel privileged that I have so many of you in my world with whom I can share this experience.

Currently, I have three videos from Saturday uploaded to YouTube. You can see all three on Treasure Your Life Now website – Tap or click on  Calm and Peace – Delray Beach Sunrise.

Or you can go to YouTube and click or tap on the Ocean Sunrise playlist. The videos will start there and automatically go from the pre-sunrise to the next and the next. After that it will continue on with other sunrises.

If you are impatient as you watch the videos, do use the scroll bar to the middle and then near the end. The imagery is different as you move forward.

A Request
If you watch any of the videos on the Inspirational Sheila YouTube Channel, please Subscribe to my channel for notification when new videos are uploaded. Simply tap or click on the “SF” on the lower right in any of the videos.

To Beauty and Peace for us all!

Please share in the Comments space below any of your experiences as you read today’s issue and watched any or all of the videos.

Faces and Perspectives – How do you want to be known?

As most of you know, I often write and point out shifts in perspectives. To lay the groundwork for today’s photos and experience, I’m reminding, or informing new subscribers, that I regularly see “faces” in many things that “catch my eye.”  

In today’s onion photos, I invite YOU to first view them from the perspective of images other than the onion as food. Then feel free to “play” in anyway you wish.
Another recurring theme in Picture to Ponder/Treasure Your Life Now has been noting how usually we look at the world through filters… often seeing what’s in front of us from the space of things that are currently happening within us. 

I experienced this with a real “clunk”/reminder last week. Some of you may have received the first photo below in an “Eye (I) Catcher” mailing, or you may have seen it posted on Facebook with some of the story. Later I found a post from four years ago where I had described these images in totally different ways.


When I set up the mailing that included the above view of the onion, I wrote that I saw a   “growling” or “chastising” face. Two hours later I came back to edit and complete the email and all I could see was a sad and disappointed face.  I had just learned that I had missed out on something I would have liked to have experienced.  I was disappointed. Then looking at this photo I could no longer see “growling,” nor can I today… a week later.

I remembered that I had probably used this image in a blog post in the past, searched for it and found that four years ago I had indeed. At the time I labeled it “Sad?”

I had added the following, with just a slight shift in perspective:

Red onion with a Moody face in saw “Mopey?”

With a 90 degree shift, there was a totally different feeling:

Red onion turned 90 degrees has a different feeling as seen on

Now, Coy? or Smiling?

and as I expressed it four years ago:

Today’s Relationship Tip 
What face do you want to be seen with or be known by?

When you get right down to it, today’s photos are obviously a cut red onion. Yet look at the varied interpretations I brought into the different points of view as I personified it.

Some of my observations of the “faces” were in fact reflections of my own state or mood that day. When I finally committed to following my persistent mantra of taking photographs of what ever catches one’s eye, I shifted into the fun and play of it. Interestingly, after that the simple rotation of the onion reflected my new state. The latter resulted, in part, from my actually using the camera.

When we remember that so much of how we interact with a situation or another person is based on our own individual interpretations, we are reminded that this also holds true for the person on the other end. Very often all we have are the expressions on our faces or another’s and/or the tones of voice to which we may also add meaning.

When with others, consider also what your own facial expressions might be saying to another. Are they what you want to be portraying? You might even want to ask what’s going on with the other person or what he/she thinks is going on with you. 

As an example, years before this, when I was in outside sales there was a week in which I experienced two different people sitting across a desk from me, at different times, each asking me why I was angry? I was not at all angry and at a Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) Workshop later in the week, I asked the leader about it. She pointed out that when I get deep in thought, my face screwed up and people watching me, not knowing what it was, interpreted it as anger.

After that, I would often set up the listening of a person I was with and tell him or her that sometimes my face might take on strange expressions when I was thinking about their question, searching for an answer. I requested that they please disregard what they saw on my face as meaning anything other than that.

An Invitation
For total fun, should there be a conflict situation and you get upset by the expression on another’s face, why not imagine it as one of these from the red onion. It might even bring a smile to your face and lighten up the whole conversation. 

As always have fun and please post your experience in the Comments Section below.

Update on Writing for Self-Discovery: Creating Breakthroughs

From a Review on Amazon

wfsd“I do not historically use writing for self-discovery. I use it to share my research, write and record CDs on meditation, and prepare papers for delivery at conventions and conferences…

Now I found Sheila has once again taught me a part of the world I could not see  that self-discovery available to each and every one of us through writing.

by reading this book, you and I get a glimpse into the art of self-discovery through writing and how it is possible for the you and me people in the world to use this to have fuller lives.”
Ina R. Ames

To get the book or see more, tap or click Writing for Self-Discovery: Creating Breakthroughs.

Again, please add your thought and experiences to any of the above in the comments section below.

Emotions in the moment impact how we see

Earlier in this week I came across this photo as I was selecting “Eye (I) Catchers” for one of seven promised mailings as part of one of the “tools” offered in my new Kindle book “Writing for Self-Discovery: Creating Breakthroughs” on Amazon. You can request the “7 Eye (I) Catchers” by clicking or tapping on Expand Vision.


cut red onion moddy resting in zucchini on

To me the “face” was scowling/growling.  I set up the email and then went onto a writing class.  I came back and looked at the photo and I could no longer see the scowling. All I could see was sadness.

I realized that I was bringing to my external vision the disappointment on something I had missed in class. One of the class assignments was to list things about ourselves that are unique.

Knowing one of the things unique about me IS the way I see things and help other people to see from new perspectives also.  So  I wrote, strictly free-flow as we write about in “Writing for Self-Discovery: Creating Breakthroughs

The Onion Speaks:

It’s really funny,
The stories people make up…
Especially Sheila.

She included me as one of the Eye (I) Catchers
In a follow-up email…
one of those Auto Responder things.

I know she had labeled me as a growling face.
That’s what/how I’d been appearing to her for
I don’t know how long.

I don’t remember what she first thought
when her eye caught my image as she was cutting
parts of my external being to get to my core.

She stopped what she was doing to get
her camera… before her iPhone… so it was
a much bigger deal than now.

I should have been flattered,
I got to be preserved no matter
what happened to me after.

But how would you like to be remembered
As a growling personality???

She even wrote tonight.
In that auto responder thing…

“As I was cutting a red onion,
I noticed a growling face.
I might have used it to chastise someone
and I like to think I avoid such behaviors.”

Somewhat arrogant, wouldn’t you agree?

After the writing class here she came back
To reread and edit the email… completely
skipped over the growling part.

I went out… at least to the first group
waiting for Eye (I) Catchers in AR3
and then she looked at me again.

Suddenly all she could see was disappointment…
Disappointment and sadness…

She had missed hearing some directions that
might or might not have been given.

It’s so funny… well not laughing funny…
I’m looking at her looking at me…
She’s keeps shaking her head…

She simply can’t find “growling” in me
any more… All she can see is “sadness.”

Interestingly, we are both big enough,
grown up enough, not to dwell in any of
these “meanings”

Rather we’re content in our “Uniqueness”
(I think that question was asked here…
“Write about your uniqueness”)

Our ability to open people up to seeing
Things in new ways…
Noticing what shifts in perspective can do…

Also becoming more aware of the stories
we tell ourselves in the first place.

Now the fun comes in hearing/learning
what other people see.

How many other interpretations will there be
as to whom I might be in this world.

Can’t wait to hear/read…
What do you see ?
Do I remind you of anything in your life?

Pretty amazing what’s possible,
Wouldn’t you agree?

Final note… Sheila in attempting her
usual “need to get it right” went back to
check… to see how she had labeled the
“jay-peg” of me.

All it said was “mood”…
Then she went further and found the
Picture to Ponder issue in which she wrote about me.

We found she showed photos of me
in 3 different positions!!

I became a totally different person in each…
So many possibilities and learnings came
from her experiences with me in that issue.

Now we are BOTH EXCITED… We’ll be
making a comeback… be published again
in Treasure Your Life Now…

I have so much I offer…

If you can’t wait to see what she’ll say next
You can see what we said 4 plus years ago
on Onion – Shifting Perspectives.

But WAIT.. First tell us PLEASE who you’ve
seen me to be… Have I triggered anything
for you in your life?

Please let me know in the comments below.”

Again, You can request the “7 Eye (I) Catchers” by clicking or tapping on Expand Vision.


Are you focused on the clouds or the moon in your life?

Last week, as you likely know, was this year’s Harvest Moon, the moon that’s closest every year to the Autumn equinox. As I’ve written in the past, I am blessed to live about 20 minutes from the ocean. In addition to going there a few times a year for sunrise, I particularly enjoy driving to the beach for full moonrise… hopefully catching it as it appears to emerge from the horizon.

Often there are clouds along the horizon, so it’s a short time before the full moon appears. This year as my friend and I were approaching an area above the beach, the moon had just started to appear on the horizon. I immediately began photographing and videoing with my iPhone.

Harvest moon begins to move into clouds
As the moon started moving into the clouds, I grabbed my Canon point and shoot camera and switched to video mode.

Continue reading

Having Fun Celebrating a Book Launch

Celebrating the launch of Writing for Self-Discovery: Creating Breakthroughs AND reaching #1 for Journal Writing and #10 for Self-Esteem on Amazon before doing any promoting! See below the first story here for more and info and the relevancy to what follows.

Today’s photo is different from the usual shared here. And sometimes it’s fun to be different. It is a photo of me recording on three devices, plus my reflection in the computer monitor as I photographed with my Canon digital camera.

The idea surfaced out of my Morning Pages writing the other day. In the back of my mind was the introducing-me video I was scheduled to record for the authors page on my site. Though I hadn’t intended to write in my Morning Pages about that task, the simple act of free-flow writing allowed the idea to emerge.

Sheila Finkelstein videos herself with 3 cameras for pageTo see a photo of the full iPad clamped onto the computer, tap or click on mounted iPad.

So often I hear, “Which is the best video camera to use when I want to share on the web?” Having had challenges with the program I had used the day before on my computer,  I thought, “What fun it would be to experiment with all three at once!” Then “even more fun if I photographed the set-up!”

So I cleared space and played with clamping my iPad onto my Mac computer. Then used my Joby flexible tripod to mount my iPhone on the microphone I use for recording when I’m on the computer.

The first one to finish uploading on YouTube was the video done using Zoom on my computer. So that’s the one I put on the author page. I’m thinking the iPad one might be more engaging. The iPhone video would be out for this one because I was not able to position it so that I could be maintain eye contact with the lens…. most important to remember when you do any videoing.

If you would like to see the differences for yourself, you can see all three videos on a YouTube Playlist I created for them. Click or tap on 3 Camera Playlist.  I’d love to hear which you think is best.  Leave your comment in the space at the end of this post.

[Note: I’ve included links for those of you who might want to know more about what I used for mounting and recording. The link for the clamp to my iPad is one of three pieces in a kit I bought quite a while ago from Caddy Buddy. The other two are on Amazon with my affiliate links. The clamp is not on an affiliate link. Although Amazon does offer pieces of the Caddy Buddy set I have, it does not have all the components. Some are sold separately.]

Writing for Self-Discovery: Creating Breakthroughs now LIVE on Amazon!!

I mentioned approaching launch time in the past two issues and the book IS now launched.

In celebration of the launch, we’ve made it available to you for FREE  to download on any, or all, of the Kindle apps for the Smartphone, Tablet, Computer of a Kindle device.

If you do not have a Kindle app, simply go to the book link – Writing Breakthrough Book – and Amazon will walk you through downloading the App and the book.  If you have any questions simply reply to this email and ask me.

Book Description

Writing for Self-Discovery: Creating Breakthroughs in
all areas of your life…
in developing relationships with self and others…
in meeting challenges… releasing stress… overcoming anger and fear…
to raising spirits when down…
expanding creativity…

The authors list and discuss opportunities of different types of free-flow writing, with ample examples.

The book includes:

Reasons for writing
Various types of prompts, highlighted so that readers can make note and use them to spark their own writing
Word pools
Expanding senses and awareness 
Practical how-to’s in writing
Morning Pages 
Haiku for anger control and other forms of expression
Sample of photos used for prompts

on my getting the idea of the playing with videoing came, as I wrote above, out of my Morning Pages writing. The book itself evolved out of my discovering writings, a large portion of which I’d done over the past 10 years in programs with Julie Jordan Scott. I thus invited her to collaborate with me on this book. Moved and inspired, as I recalled and reflected on my transformation over the years, I wanted to share it so others might experience impact in their own lives by experimenting with some of the ideas we discuss in the book.

Most of the examples of my writing are formatted to look like poetry. Although some of it did turn out to be poetic, it was laid out that way to make it easier to read.

To learn more about the book and the special free offers in it go to Writing for Self-Discovery and use Amazon’s Look Inside feature which shows the Table of Contents and much more.

Self-Reflecting Queries
I  invite you to set an intention for the next few days look for and observe new things.
Then make note of what kinds of discoveries they are.
Is there a pattern?
Do you take the time to celebrate them?  If so, how?
Are you comfortable if/when you are moved to act in a different way?
Can you do so freely?

The book will be available for FREE through Saturday midnight Pacific time on Amazon at

For links to the items I used to mount my iPad and iPhone go back to the top of this issue.

Be sure to check out the Author page to experience both my excitement and to meet me AND Julie who is about “Artistic Rebirth” and so much more.

For those interested in how the different devices recorded, check out the 3 video playlist. It is the exact same conversation in each, though interestingly to me there are a few seconds differences between them.

Please share in the comments below any of your experiences as you read today’s issue.

Thank you for being in my life and for celebrating with me.

Do You Want to Find and Free Your Inner Voice?

Little boy looks up from his drawingDo YOU have a Story Wanting to Come Out?

Earlier this week, I attended a free virtual event by phone – “Freeing Your Writing Voice: 3 Keys to Reclaiming the Joy & Magic in Your Words.” It is being offered again tomorrow, Saturday. Session is past. Click or tap on link below for replay.

There was so much value in that hour. I wanted to make sure that you, too, have the opportunity to hear what SARK and her business partner have to say. Even if you do NOT have a book wanting to come out, I highly recommend Freeing Your Writing Voice for freeing any of your voices.  Continue reading

What is your Way of Being? Hummingbird? With Curiosity or Passion?

In the last post with featured sunflowers, I wrote briefly about my trip to Colorado. I mentioned that I took 40 plus videos of hummingbirds going back and forth to and from the feeder at my friend’s home. I promised to share in this issue.

I was having challenges getting started in the writing of it, so many choices and possible directions. Ultimately I decided to take my own prescription, as covered in my upcoming Kindle Book – Writing for Self-Discovery: Creating Breakthroughs:

“Simply set a timer, grab a pen and paper or go to your keyboard and start free-flow writing on the phrase or phrases running around in your head… no editing while writing. I set the timer for 5 minutes and then another 5 and finished before.” The result:Hummingbirds and Fascination

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What Secrets Do the Sunflowers Have? – From Burden to Blessings

(Important: If you want are looking to comment on the Hummingbird – Curiosity or Passion post coming from the ezine you received in your email, please go to Hummingbird Post.)

Today’s Photos 

Sunflowers, a few of the over 300 photos I took during the 21 days following the purchase of bouquet of five. I invite you to allow the sunflower images to speak to you before reading what I wrote.  Are they holding, or withholding, any secrets, as one person who saw the photos suggested?

Sunflower constrained with netting waiting to be released seen on http://TreasureYourLifeNow.comOne of my activities during these past two months has been working on the completion of my Writing for Self-Discovery: Creating Breakthroughs Kindle book. A friend and mentor who previewed portions of a Preview wrote:”When you do your free-flow writing, it’s like poetry. It’s beautiful writing, clear, elegant, unencumbered.” Her comments moved me to do some timed, free-flow writing to the Sunflowers for this issue instead of explaining. Thus:

Sunflower waiting to burst through
Comfortably protected in elastic netting
What’s possible when released?

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Summer Solstice Full Moon plus Perfectionism and Indecision

Video of almost Full Moon Summer Solstice 2016

Do you ever find yourself stuck in the morass of perfectionism and indecision? This post is the result of taking action, breaking through “stuckness”. Being up-front and transparent, this has been where I’ve been in relation to posting regularly.

I have a wealth of years of past issues of Picture to Ponder filled with photos and content upon which I can draw and an abundance of new photos and videos, many of which currently are a result of playing with my iPhone camera and photos.

And I sit glued in the indecision of 3 W’s – Which photos and What message(s) to share with you along with Why. So, finally I’m finally taking action, staying current, highlighting the Summer Solstice 2016 Full Moon in a video slide show.  Click/tap on the image,  or Moon Play link to take to YouTube to watch it.

For me, taking photographs is always restorative. On the Solstice Day itself I took a 20-minute ride to Boynton Beach, with friends. We had hoped for views of the moon rising over the horizon. Just before moonrise, Continue reading