Sally's Guide On The Side Newsletter

June 19, 2009

Volume 1, Issue 3


6650 W. State Street, Suite 227, Wauwatosa, WI 53213

Feature Article: My Father's Gift

Table of Contents:

A Note from Sally
My Father's Gift
Top Ten: Top 10 Powerful Questions to Ask
Monthly Speaking Tip for a Dazzling Presentation
Monthly Recommendations
Comment Corner
Reiki Circles in Milwaukee
About Sally

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A Note from Sally

Welcome to Sally's Guide On The Side specifically designed to help you improve your confidence, self-esteem, and communication skills. Please feel free to forward this issue to friends, family, associates, and loved ones.

Hello Sally,

Thank you for opening this newsletter. You are reading this because our lives have touched. This newsletter gives me the opportunity to now stay in contact and connect with you on the level you choose at least once a month.

Sunday, June 21 is Father's Day. When this section of my chapter "The Eyes Tell All" was first published in 1990 in Creative Communicators published by the late Dorothy M. Walters and Royal Publishing Company, I received a number of letters from readers thanking me for writing about my father and how they related to what I said.

I hope this essay will inspire you to reach out to your father in the most special way you've ever acknowledged him if he is living and if not, to celebrate and give thanks and appreciation for the gifts you received from your father.

My Father's Gift

When I recall times in my life when I felt absolutely loved, I remember hearing myself in two separate conversations with my father.

I remember saying to him on my fortieth birthday, "Daddy, you have never told me you loved me." His response was, "Sally, I have shown you. Why do you think I called you during your race for mayor, and why do I have your mother call you all the time?" And I said, "Daddy, I need to hear it."

During the next years when we said good-bye face-to-face, we embraced, looked in each other's eyes and said, "I love you."

In 1987 my father went into a nursing home. God gave me the opportunity to see my father one last time in December 1988 at Christmas. As he introduced me and my husband and two daughters to his female smoking buddy, I found him constantly loving at me. When I looked in his eyes, I thought about the eyes being the window of the soul, and I felt we were meeting on some deeper level, and most likely for the last time.

During the day and a half we spent in Fargo before we flew back to Chicago, I had the opportunity to spend time with this frail man who was a shadow of my memory of my childhood father. I found myself feeling like I was the parent and he was the child, as I helped him to adjust his trouser belt so his slacks would stay up.

Then, as I was leaving the nursing home on Christmas Day, I knelt down in front of him with tears streaming down my face and my voice breaking with emotion. I cupped his face lovingly in my hands, and I said to him, "Daddy, I love you. You have lived a good life. You have eight children and fourteen grandchildren and youll have more. I am becoming successful, and I owe it to you."

He smiled and said, "Fourteen!"

As I released his face, I knew I would not see him again in this lifetime. I stood up and embraced him that last time, and I asked him if he had anything to say to me before I left. He looked in my eyes, and I heard him say, "I love you." That was my final gift from my father.

© Sally O'Brien, Love Offerings to the Universe, 2004, pp. 89-90.

Ten Top Questions to Ask?

The poet e.e. cummings wrote: "Always the beautiful answer, who asks a more beautiful question." Indeed, solid strategic plans, strong work relationships, high morale and improved performance are all byproducts of good questions. This potent communication tool can help you discover important information about your work, yourself, your associates, your customersand create insights that otherwise might have remained hidden.

Asking questions without leading, prompting or interrupting shows that you're really listening. It encourages us to suspend assumptions, which helps prevent miscommunication, unrealistic expectations, stress, damaged relationships and unfulfilled responsibilities. Below are just a few questions that can have powerful effects on your work and life. Just be sure to LISTEN to the answers.

1.What is it that youd like to see accomplished and how do you see it happening?

2.What are your thoughts? Your concerns?

3.What self-limiting fears, thoughts or actions do I want to leave behind?

4.What's the most important priority to you with this and why?

5.What would you like to see improved?

6.Can you help me understand that a little better?

7.What's in the way of improved performance? How can I change that?

8.If I could change one thing in my life/business that would have the greatest impact, what would it be?

9.What prevents me from being able to place more focus on this?

10.Are my actions today compatible with what I wish to leave behind as a legacy?

Author's content used under license, © 2008 Claire Communications

Monthly Speaking Tip for a Dazzling Presentation

Preparation To create a magical presence before you even begin speaking, stand in front of a mirror and balance your weight evenly on the balls of both feet. Lift your rib cage high and contract your stomach. This is the look and appearance of confidence. The appearance of confidence commands people to "Stop, look, and listen."

© 2005 Sally OBrien Original text appeared as monthly column in Hawaii Island Chamber of Commerce Newsletter 1995-1996.

Monthly Recommendations:

Quote to Remember:"Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new."--Albert Einstein

The First 30 Days: Your Guide to Making Change Easier
by Ariane de Bonvoisin

This book is the one for you if you are looking to find the courage within yourself to grow from life's changes.

The chapters of the book clearly show the reader how to embrace change and help you get through any situation and the six main change demons or negative emotions which are fear, doubt, impatience, blame, guilt, and shame.

I was struck by the 15 questions that will empower you and make change easier. They are the following: What could be great about this change? Will I allow myself to be empowered by this or diminished? How long will I allow my life be on hold before I surrender to what is happening? Could this change be protecting me from something? What opportunity has this change brought to me? Can I find some humor in this? What part of my life can I focus on that hasnt changed? Who can help me? What can I focus on now? What steps must I take now? How am I succeeding right now? What can I be grateful for? What was great about today? What have I already accomplished? How can I reward myself and celebrate my progress so far?

Two powerful chapters are the Change Guarantee, which is from the situation something good will come. One saying which I particularly liked was "You cannot see around corners." You just have to keep moving ahead, trusting and having faith that there's something good around the bend. Another significant chapter is The Change Muscle; you're stronger than you think, because each change you've already made in your life has prepared you for the one you are now facing.

This book is filled with wonderful quotes, personal stories, exercises, action steps, checklists, and is truly supportive and inspirational for times of change, loss, and transition. This is definitely one to add to your library.

Next month I'll review Dr. Wayne W. Dyer's latest book, Excuses Begone! How to Change Lifelong Self-Defeating Thinking Habits.

Comment Corner:

Response to the May 22, 2009, second issue

Hi Sally, Thanks for sharing your May newsletter. I put your "How Well Do You Communicate" quiz into immediate application. I pick up one item each day from the list and put it into practice for that day. Not only do I apply it to myself, I note how others are communicating and make mental notes on how that communication could have gone better. It is a great reminder to stop and think as my Mom used to say.

I also enjoyed the Bowl of Light story. I have 4 grandchildren and a Mom with dementia. The application to the kids is obvious and since the first three are brothers all 16 months apart, getting them to stop throwing the stones will be the first step. But I can see building to anticipation of being able to achieve their goal of turning out the bowl and moving to a new day. I'm also going to try it with my Mom, as she gets frustrated or upset with things and people in her world that seem to conspire against her. I think having something concrete as a stone to place her fears and anger into, then watching them fall away out of the bowl might be helpful. Thanks Sally, for such a wonderful gift that reminds us that each day and moment can uplift us if we look to ourselves as the biggest barometer of our reactions. I know I need to smile more and your thoughts and ideas nudge me to that goal.
Christine Jurich Wauwatosa, WI

Please share your comments about topics in the newsletters, and see them published here next month. To be printed, you must provide your full name and address and contact information just like the editorial requirements in newspapers and magazines. I look forward to your feedback and suggestions for improvement. My email address is

Reiki Circles in Milwaukee, July 11, 2009

We were blessed in doing distant healing for 10 families for our second monthly Reiki Circles in Milwaukee on June 13. Five Reiki Masters and practitioners chose to be at our official location on Kinnickinnic Avenue for any additional energy healers who showed up in person or any special needs family who had not registered by Friday evening following the monthly call. The other 10 energy healers set the intention and sent distant energy healing for all the 10 families from their homes or offices also during the 10 a.m. to noon time frame.

As co-founder of Reiki Circles in Milwaukee, Im very excited to join with other Reiki Masters and practitioners to offer free of charge Reiki energy healing for all special needs children and their families beginning at 10 a.m. at 2534 S. Kinnickinnic Avenue in Milwaukee the second Saturday of the month. Please contact me at 414-257-1931 for more information, to register, or to request distant healing even though you are not presently living in the Milwaukee area. Reiki is not limited to time or space.

On the Friday evening before the monthly event, I co-host a one hour teleseminar for all Reiki energy healers, who will be sending Reiki energy healing in person or at a distance. During the call we set the intention for the healing for all that participate in the Saturday Reiki Circles. The teleseminar will be at 6 p.m. PST, 7 p.m. MST, 8 p.m. CST, and 9 p.m. EST. Email me at to get the call in number and access code to join us on the call.

Confident Power, Presence & Presentation™

Confidence Coaching From The Inside Out

About Sally: Sally K. O'Brien is a certified confidence coach, life coach, professional speaker, and author of Love Offerings to the Universe and a contributing author to 101 Great Ways to Improve Your Life, Vol. 2. Sally combines her 35 years as a communication skills expert, 13 years Reiki energy healing, and 20 years as a professional speaker to help her clients move through the life challenges and transitions with ease and joy. She helps them identify a life plan that is aligned to a soul level and practical in leading a purpose driven life. To contact Sally, go to

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