Tag Archives: Katherine Gordy Levine

Put off all you can except what matters

Procrastination is the art of remembering what matters.

Put off all you can as long as you can.  Worry not as what needs to get done, gets done.

Put off all you can as long as you can. Worry not as what needs to get done, gets done. Thank you collegeessayorganizer.com for this image

This quick EFTI post is based on this Daily Prompt: Wasted Days and Wasted Nights  Tell us your tried and true techniques for focusing when that deadline looms and you need to get work done. In other words, how do you avoid wasted days and wasted nights?

As noted above, procrastination is remembering what matters and focusing on that means not days or nights are wasted.

I was heading into my fifties when I realized I needed a bit of time pressure to do my best work; procrastination worked in my favor. This Poster Coach now sums up my views on the subject. It is today’s free poster coach.

Seven Reasons to Procrastinate.


If procrastination makes you fret and fume, you have two choices. Stop procrastinating or strengthen your self-soothing skills.  Learning the art of Sloganeering helps with that. So here is another free Poster Coach.

Procrastinate as long as you can and as often as you can.

Thank you for all you do to Practice Kindness. Doing a little matters, doing a lot matters more.



Make my day; let me make you laugh.

Smiles boost #EmotionalIntelligence.  Making strangers smile or laugh is part of Practicing Kindness, one of my Daily Twelve Easy Emotional Fitness Exercises.


Daily Prompt: Make Me Smile If you’re feeling blah, what is the one thing you do that you can count on to put a smile on your face?


Become a comedian.

How to become a comedian


I can’t tell you how much I love shopping. Not for what I buy, mostly food or toys for the grands.  No, it is for the opportunity to josh or flirt with the humans operating the cash registers. Hate that technology has dwindled the number of people taking my money.

One of my favorite lines and usually in response to the  “Did you find everything you wanted?”  now required of most cashiers.

My “Get a laugh” response:  “No. (pause for effect)  I am still looking for the million dollars needed to keep up with the cost of living. Guess you haven’t found it either.”

Always gets a surprised look and a laugh that makes my day.



Todays is the How to Become a Comedian. 



Thoughtful Thursday – Honoring Aida Cruz, not Bill Gates

Thinking about what matters is an Emotional Fitness Exercise.   This post is about giving from the heart, not from the pocket book.

Who gives to charity chart. The poor do more.

A Torah discussion of giving from Aish.com: Metzora(Leviticus 14-15) “You Think I’m Bad?!…”

If he is poor and his means are not sufficient… (Lev. 14:21)

The offerings of a wealthy and poor man are not equal – they are only required to bring offerings according to their means. The Mishnah(1) states that a wealthy metzora (a person struck with tzoraas) who brings a poor man’s offering has not fulfilled his obligation with such an offering.

The same concept applies to a Jew’s spirituality. A person must put forth the utmost effort when it comes to serving God, and he must utilize fully the potential that God has granted him. We may often validate our bad behavior by comparing ourselves to friends who are doing similarly. However, this is a grave error. Your friend may fall into the category of a spiritually “poor man” – perhaps he does not possess the same capabilities and knowledge that you do. If you act like him you may well see your own obligation to reach greater heights go unfulfilled. The greater our potential, the greater the expectation.(2)

The verse states “in heaven above and on the earth below.” (3) In pursuit of spirituality (heaven), one must look up to people that are “above” him, people that are greater than he is, and strive to be like them. However, in pursuit of physical pleasures (earth), one must look at people that are “beneath” him. One should look at those who have less than him and therefore he will be content with what he has.(4)

Emotional fitness Thoughts

A few of those reading this and who worked with me at the Visiting Nurse Service of New York know who Aida Cruz is.  She is retired now and we have lost touch much to my regret.  She lives on in my heart, however, as the person I would like to be.

Why? She used the struggles of her life to enrich others.  Aida Cruz was born in Puerto Rico but spent most of life in the South Bronx, long before it became fairly safe to live their.  She married and had two sons, both suffered from major emotional disabilities; one eventually committed suicide at the behest of the voices that commanded much of his life.

Aida worked most of her life as a beautician. One study showed that for the near poor, beauticians were low-cost therapists. When she came to work in my VNSNY programs as a Parent Advocate, she helped  more people than most of the staff with fancy degrees.

We would walk the mean streets of Mott Haven together (Read Jonathan Kozol’s book Amazing Grace or watch the movie Bonfire of the Vanities for a glimpse of where Aida lived).  As we walked, few people passed us without greeting Aida. Often, she would dip into her purse and hand out a bit of cash to the neediest beggars.

Once I protested she was giving money that would probably go for wine or drugs, and she remarked quietly, “He could be my son.”

I blushed all the way back to our office and never again refused a down and out beggar.

Emotional fitness tip

Practice deliberate kindness and from your heart, not your judgements about who deserves what.  I admire Bill Gates and others of his kind who share their wealth; but I admire even more  those like Aida Cruz who give when it lowers their standard of living.


If we forget kindness matters most, or judge before we give, we are weakened and the world’s progress toward peace slows.

Thank you all for all you do to care and share with others. Doing a little matters a lot. Doing more matters more.


This post relates somewhat to this Daily Prompt: Lookin’ Out My Back Door:  Look out your back window or door — describe what you see.  Actually what I see is an April Snow storm. But instead of looking out my back door, I looked back in time to someone who helped me grow stronger.


Practice Deliberate Kindness ass an Emotional Fitness Exercise.

All EFTI Poster Coaches are offered as free digitial downloads at the EFTI Store.


Winning the sanity battle

Quaker saying: “The whole world is crazy, except thee and me.”  Actually, thee and me are crazy lots of the time also.

Are you sane or insane?

I was a mental health professional and for nearly 15 years I directed mental health crisis teams before, during, and after 9/11.  The primary question my teams had to answer was “Does this person need to be in protective custody?”  Not that we said that: the politically correct question was “Does this person need to be in a psychiatric hospital?”

In order to reach this decision we conducted  a Mental Status Examination using criteria set forth in the Diagnostic Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM).  The DSM has recently been overhauled and many question the changes. Many more also question the idea that  there is such a thing as diagnosable mental illness. I don’t. Although I think diagnosing a mental illness is more of an art than a science, I believe accurately figuring out whether or not a person is struggoing more than most has advantages particularly for those who are at the more serious end of the continuum of sane versus insane.

Emotional Fitness Thoughts

In time, I stopped thinking of myself as a therapist and founded Emotional Fitness Training, Inc. Why? Because we all walk a narrow line between sanity and insanity.  This means all need help staying emotionally strong what I call emotionally fit.

However,  the stigma attached to mental illness  keeps many from seeking support or help for emotional problems.  I hoped the idea of emotional fitness would gain the same popularity as  physical fitness.

Knowledge is power, so one of my strategies has been to share my professional knowledge. Toward that end, here is an Emotional Fitness Snapshot that provides a rough idea of your level of emotional fitness.   As with all EFTI tests, these are not research based, but intended to help you think more deeply about things.

Check list to determine your emotional fitness

Needless to say, if you are feeling suicidal and have any plans to kill yourself, you need an immediate mental health evaluation.  One is also indicated if you scored 21 or below  over the course of several days. Do not let stigma keep you from doing all you need to do to live the good life.

If you scored five in all categories, you are lying, delusional or the Dalai Lama.  No human is that strong. We all need support, coaching, therapy, or even medication to deal with the harsh side of life.

STay Strong

Life is a wondrous struggle and for many of us a roller coaster ride with highs and lows.  A daily Emotional Fitness strengthening strengthens you to endure the bad and enjoy the good. If you are new to the idea of emotional fitness exercises visit this blog page: Easy Emotional Fitness Exercises to get started  improving your emotional intelligence.

Thank you all for all you do to care and share with others. Doing a little matters a lot.


FREE Poster Coach

Quotation Poster dealing with definitions of insane.

This post was inspired by this Daily Prompt: She Drives Me Crazy  It makes me crazy when people wear their shoes in my house. What habit/act drives you crazy? How do you prevent it from happening? Obviously, the stigma attached to emotional suffering is one of the bees in my bonnet.