Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Jack (Chicken Soup for the Soul) Canfield Highly Recommends Change Your Life!: A Little Book of Big Ideas

For over forty-years, I have inspired, and helped people achieve their maximum potential. As a motivational speaker and best-selling author, I have provided my audiences and readers with powerful words and thoughts to help them transform their lives. I know that sometimes the simplest words can make a major difference in people perceive their world.

Change Your Life!: A Little Book of Big Ideas is like that. With a collection of simple yet profound ideas, this little volume of BIG ideas can change your life. It is written by Allen Klein, who is also a motivational speaker and best-selling author, He has artfully collected wise words from sages throughout the ages. Quotations that will make your heart sing, and, thoughts that will bring focus and perspective to your life.

One of the fun things you can do with this wonderful book is to open it to any page and read one of the quotations. Those words might just be what you need to hear that day.

Or, share this book with someone else. Someone who perhaps is celebrating a special occasion, like a graduation, birthday, anniversary, or, better yet, give them this book for no reason at all. Your random act of kindness will enrich their life and deepen yours through the simple act of giving.

In addition, you can search the table of contents to find encouraging thoughts on a subject with which you might be struggling, such as, taking the first step, overcoming obstacles, or gathering your courage.

How you make use of this book really doesn’t matter. What does matter is that you use it. I know it will enrich your life and provide you with big ideas that can make a big difference in your life.

Jack Canfield,
Santa Barbara, CA

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Mid-Month Mirth Memo, November 2012

The contest was simple: Which department in the hospital where I worked as a nurse
could create the best Christmas decorations?

While they didn't win first prize, the members of the proctology department did receive
high honors with their distinctive sign, "Christmas is a good time to look up old friends."
                                                                               —Pat Ingels, in Readers Digest, 12/12


—Cooking with Poo (Note: "Poo" is the Thai word for crab)
—Bomb-proof Your Horse
—Second International Workshop on Nude Mice

If you were to open a Starbucks in the lobby of a funeral home, what would you call it?

Among others, readers of the Week replied:
—The Grim Roaster
—Time to Meet Your Mocha
—Latte for Your Own Funeral

Summarizes what I've learned so far in life:

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Rabbi Earl A. Grollman Highly Recommends Learning to Laugh When You Feel Like

In this most helpful book, Allen Klein shows how to transform your attitude toward loss, whether it be a loved one’s death, the loss of a job, or the trials associated with aging, in order to return to living life more fully again.

As a pioneer in the field of loss and crisis intervention, I have seen many ways that people cope with grief and loss. Sometimes laughing is a healing medicine. The eminent psychiatrist, Viktor Frankl, a concentration camp survivor, provides perhaps a most powerful example. Everyday he found something funny to laugh about. He credited his survival, in part, to humor. It gave him hope to look forward to each day. It afforded him the power to rise above an almost powerless situation. I say, “almost,” because Frankl attributed his survival to attitude, the real power one has over any situation.

Klein is no stranger to the value of therapeutic humor as an attitude-changing tool. From his experience as a former home health aide and hospice volunteer, as well as from the personal and career losses in his life, he has amassed a wealth of compassionate wisdom. This knowledge is presented here in a very easy-to-digest, helpful, and reader-friendly format.

Like Elizabeth Kubler Ross’s five stages of dying, Klein has created what he calls “the five stages of living” after loss. They are Losing, Learning, Letting Go, Living, and Laughing.

In one of his previous books, The Courage to Laugh: Humor, Hope, and Healing in the Face of Death and Dying, Klein imparted encouraging stories of how those who were facing life-threatening challenges, from such crises as cancer, AIDS, lingering loss, or sudden loss, had used humor as a meaningful coping tool. In the book, Learning to Laugh When You Feel Like Crying, Klein goes a step further. With inspirational quotations, lessons from diverse cultures, and heartwarming advice, he provides numerous suggestions for finding humor during those not-so-funny times.

While death, dying, and loss are no laughing matter, those who find a bit of humor in the grieving process know that they will survive. When laughing, you have a moment’s respite in what is often an overwhelming circumstance. It is a wonderful way to communicate at a time when communication is often at an impasse. In addition, you gain a different perspective at a difficult time and rise above life’s adversities.

And, perhaps the most important gain is that humor and laughter, as Frankl discovered fosters hope. I have always been intrigued with the power that hope provides during a crisis. Without hope all is lost.

There are many books about coping with grief and loss. I have written a few of them myself. But Learning to Laugh When You Feel Like Crying is unique because of its focus on enduring losses, learning from them, and beginning to live and laugh again.

I hope that you will read this book. For it will not only provide you with hope but also with a passion for life.

Rabbi Earl A. Grollman, DHL, DD

Author of Living When a Lived One Has Died


Monday, October 15, 2012

Mid-Month Mirth Memo, October 2012

The man sitting next to me on a recent flight was terrified of planes; he couldn’t stop shaking.

    So I suggested he get a Scotch from the flight attendant, which he did, drinking it down

in one gulp.

    “Can I get another one?” he asked me. I pointed out the button above his head and told

him to press it if he wanted another drink.

      He promptly stood up, pushed the button, and held his glass underneath it.

                                                                       -Robert Nurton, in Reader's Digest, October 2012 


Law of Mechanical Repair:
After your hands become coated with grease, your nose will begin to itch and you'll have to pee.

The Coffee Law:
As soon as you sit down to a cup of hot coffee, someone will ask you to do something which will
last until the coffee is cold.

Law of Gravity:
Any tool, nut, bolt, screw, when dropped, will roll to the least accessible place in the universe.


Laughter and the loss of a spouse on Open to Hope TV show. 

Monday, September 24, 2012

Three Ways to Get What You Want

Many moons ago, I lived in New York City and worked as a scenic designer for CBS television. One of the shows I designed was Captain Kangaroo. It was great fun except at Thanksgiving time. You see the Captain was the MC for Macy's Thanksgiving Parade so I had to be in the studio every Thanksgiving at 6am in the morning to supervise the set I designed. While most people were at home sleeping in on the holiday, I would be off to work at 5am.

I no longer work in television and now live on the West coast but I still am enamored with Macy's Thanksgiving Day parade and watch it every year on TV. Last year, while watching, I got a longing to be part of the parade again. Instead of being behind the scenes, as I used to be, I wanted to be in the parade itself. I had no idea how I'd make that happen but I somehow knew it would because once I put my intention on something, it usually comes true. One of the reasons for that is that I believe that we are six-degrees of separation away from someone who can help get whatever it is that we want.

For several months I asked everyone I met if they knew anyone connected to the parade. Two people did and were going to work on it. But they weren't getting very far. So, one day I posted my desire on Facebook. Pretty soon after that a friend/colleague of mine, who lives in New York, said she would investigate who to contact at Macy's.

Several days later, she emailed me to say that it was too late to get in the parade but they were sending me an application anyhow. They did. I filled it out. And two days later, they said that if I want, I could march in the parade this year as a clown.

Of course, I was thrilled but I also found out that I might have to go to clown school which was not convenient since I'm on the West coast and the classes were on the East coast. In addition, I am not a professional clown, although I do teach humor workshops and once gathered a group of friends to all wear clown noses to a Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey circus performance. But my biggest concern was that I really wanted to ride on a float in the parade not walk the long distance. I could do it but that was not the experience I wanted. (I guess I had forgotten the lesson I learned a long time ago that you really have to be clear on what you want or you may get something else.)

So I contacted Macy's to thank them so much for inviting me to be in the parade this year but that I really wanted to ride on a float. The person in charge was most gracious and told me when to contact them next year and he could probably arrange my ride on a float.

I'll let you know what float I'll be on so you can wave to me. I promise to wave back.

P.S.- Doing this process made me realize three important steps in getting whatever it is you want.

1- INTENTION: Be very clear about what you want.

2- TELL THE WORLD ABOUT IT: Don't keep it a secret. How will others know what you want if you don't tell them about it ?

3- RALLY THE TROOPS: People love helping other people. Remember you are only six degrees of separation away from someone who can assist you in getting what you want.

Oh, and one more thing...remember to be thankful for what you get.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Mid-Month Mirth Memo- September, 2012

While working for an organization that delivers lunches to elderly shut-ins, I used to take my four-year-old daughter on my afternoon rounds. The various appliances of old age, particularly the canes, walkers and wheelchairs, intrigued her. One day I found her staring at a pair of false teeth soaking in a glass. As I braced myself for the inevitable barrage of questions, she merely turned and whispered, "The tooth fairy will never believe this."
I changed my iPod's name to Titanic. It's syncing now.
They told me I had type-A blood, but it was a Type-O.
Why were the Indians here first? They had reservations.
What do you call a dinosaur with an extensive vocabulary? a thesaurus
A cartoonist was found dead in his home. Details are sketchy.


I knew I was going bald because it was taking longer and longer t wash my face.
                                                                                                            —Harry Hill

Did you know that I'm now a Health & Happiness writer for Examiner.com?
If you want more happiness in your life subscribe to my postings at:

Sunday, July 15, 2012

MidMonth Mirth Memo - July 15, 2012

The MidMonth Mirth Memo is a short amusing tidbit to brighten middle of the month monotony. 
It is brought to you by best-selling author, award-winning speaker, "Jollytologist" ® Allen Klein        



A panda walks into a restaurant, sits down, and orders a sandwich. He eats the sandwich,

pulls out a gun, and shoots the waiter dead. As the panda stands up to go, the manager

shouts, "Hey! Where are you going? You just shot my waiter, and you didn't even pay for

your sandwich!"

"Hey, man, I'm a PANDA!" the panda shouts back. "Look it up!"

The manager opens his dictionary and reads: "Panda: a tree-dwelling mammal of Asian origin,

characterized by distinct black and white coloring. Eats shoots and leaves."


As my friend, an anesthesiologist at a hospital, passed by an operating room,

she noticed it was being set up for a breast augmentation procedure. So she

popped her head inside.

            "What's going on?" she asked a nurse.

            The nurse's reply:

They're making a mountain out of a molehill."

                                                         —Yo Klein (no relation), Reader's Digest


Why do they call it rush hour when nothing moves?

                                                          —Robin Williams


Loss hurts...but it is also one of our greatest teachers. Find out more in:

Learning to Laugh When You Feel Like Crying: Embracing Life After Loss

(Goodman Beck Publishing, 2011. Foreword by Rabbi Earl A. Grollman)

Available at: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or

http://www.allenklein.com/Learn_laugh.htm (Quantity discounts available)

Friday, June 15, 2012

MidMonth Mirth Memo - June 2012

"I bought SPF 75 sunscreen. I squeezed the tube, and out came a wool sweater."
                                                                                                       -Mike Wiley

A bar called Drummond's (in Mt Vernon, Texas) began construction on
an expansion of their building, hoping to "grow" their business. In response,
the local Southern Baptist Church started a campaign to block the bar from

About a week before the bar's grand re-opening, a bolt of lightning struck
the bar and burned it to the ground!

Afterward, the church folks were rather smug - bragging about "the power of prayer".

The angry bar owner eventually sued the church on grounds that the church...
"Was ultimately responsible for the demise of his building, through direct
actions or indirect means." Of course, the church vehemently denied all responsibility
or any connection to the building's demise.

The judge read carefully through the plaintiff's complaint and the defendant's reply.

He then opened the hearing by saying:
"I don't know how I'm going to decide this, but it appears from the paperwork that
what we have here is a bar owner who now believes in the power of prayer, and an
entire church congregation that does not."

"People always ask me how long it takes to do my hair. I don't know. I'm never there."
                                                                    -Dolly Parton

Be the first on your block to get my latest book to be published this Fall.  
The Art of Living Joyfully can be pre-ordered now at: http://tinyurl.com/7s5osxz

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

MidMonth Mirth Memo - May 2012


Spirit airlines recently announced that it will charge $100 to put a carry-on bag in the overhead bin.
What next you ask? Well here is what readers of Week magazine thought might be a couple of future

*$9 fee for bumping your head on the overhead bin as you take your seat; $3 additional penalty for
looking up at the bin after you bump into it.

*In the unlikely event of loss of cabin pressure, oxygen masks will drop down. To start the flow of oxygen, simply insert your credit card…


Not sure how good a read these are but here are some actual amusing book titles:

Cooking with Pooh

If God Loves Me, Why Can't I Get My Locker Open?

I'm Changing the Locks & Cementing the Windows: How to Keep the Kids from Coming Back


When chemists die, they barium.

Jokes about German sausage are the wurst.

I know a guy who's addicted to brake fluid. He says he can stop any time.

I'm reading a book about anti-gravity. I just can't put it down.

All the toilets in New York's police stations have been stolen. The police have nothing to go on.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Mid-Month Mirth Memo- April 2012

JOKES OF THE MONTH (for tax day, of course):

Did you hear about the cannibal tax accountant? She charges an arm and a leg.


If a tax man and a lawyer were both drowning and you could only save one, would you go to lunch
or read the paper?


A man was driving along the road when all of a sudden he has to swerve to avoid a box falling off a
truck in front of him.

Seconds later a policeman pulls him over for reckless driving. As the policeman starts to write the
ticket he notices the box was full of nails and tacks.

"I had to swerve or I'd have run over those and blown all my tires!" protests the driver.

"OK", replied the officer, ripping up the ticket, "but I'm still bringing you in."

"What for?!" asked the man.

"Tacks evasion", answered the policeman.


"Kindle is like phone sex. It's OK when you're out of town but it's not the real thing." 

                                                                                                      -Jeanette Winterson


April is National Humor Month. Celebrate with it with TEACHER-LAUGHS audio-book.

Free sample listen at: http:tinyurl.com/7spdopo (click under cover artwork)

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Mid-Month Mirth Memo- March 2012


(*Paraprosdokians are figures of speech in which the latter part of a sentence or phrase
is surprising or unexpected; frequently humorous.)

-Where there's a will, I want to be in it.
-Buses stop in bus stations. Trains stop in train stations. On my desk is a work station.
-In filling out an application, where it says, "In case of emergency, notify: 'I write DOCTOR.'"
-Change is inevitable, except from a vending machine.
-I used to be indecisive. Now I'm not so sure.


A man tells his doctor, "Doc, help me. I'm addicted to Twitter!"
The doctor replies, "Sorry, I don't follow you..."


Three boys are in the school yard bragging about their fathers. The first boy says, "My Dad
scribbles a few words on a piece of paper, he calls it a poem, they give him $50." The second boy says, "That's nothing. My Dad scribbles a few words on piece of paper, he calls it a song, they give him $100." The third boy says, "I got you both beat. My Dad scribbles a few words on a piece of paper, he calls it a sermon, and it takes eight people to collect all the money!"

Save over $7 on the L.A.U.G.H. Activity book & CD for therapists/counselor/clients
Hurry…offer ends Monday 03/19/12.  Use key code WAHG.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Mid-Month Mirth Memo- February 2012


Google recently found that a woman was using the following password:


When asked why she had such a long password, she rolled her eyes and said:
"Hello! It has to be at least 8 characters long and include at least one capital."


"What's with his weird hotel custom of leaving a piece of chocolate on the pillow?
I awoke thinking my brain had hemorrhaged some sort of fecal matter."
                                                                                                          -Jerry Seinfeld


What do you call a fish with no eyes?
A fsh.


Did you know that February 15th is Allen Klein's Day?
Check it out at:


L.A.U.G.H.: Using Humor and Play to Help Clients Cope...
60 Therapeutic, Perspective Building, Life-Changing Activities for Therapists and Counselors
to Use with Individuals and Groups  (Book & CD pub. by Wellness Reproductions, 2010)
Available: Amazon at http://amzn.to/y8mQec or http://www.allenklein.com/LAUGH.html

Monday, February 6, 2012

Every Day Can Be Valentine’s Day


I love February because it contains Valentine’s Day…the day set aside to tell people we love them.

But shouldn’t we really be doing that everyday?

Of course, but we forget…until someone or something reminds us to do so.

That reminder came to me the other day via email. It was totally unexpected and totally a surprise but very much appreciated. It made my day…no…it made my month…maybe even my year.

The email came from a colleague of mine. We are both members of the National Speakers Association and we chat briefly whenever we see each other at a meeting, which hasn't been for a long time. That’s what made the email even more special. A “love letter” out of the blue.

Here is what my speaking-buddy wrote:

Hey Pal,

I was just in Las Vegas at a conference of credit counselors and after the event a woman came up to me and told me all about you.  I listened quietly and did not interrupt her as she told me about your work, your books and what a loving soul you are.  She then told me about how much someone like me could learn from you.  I agreed and I shared with her then that you have always been a hero of mine and that I had met you and highly respected you.  She then asked me if I'd ever told you what an impact you'd had on my life and career and I said no so she told me to write to you!  I do what I'm told, but I'm embarrassed not to have done it before.

It's funny my friend - I don't think I've ever told you.  It is important to me that you know what a cornerstone you have been in my career and how much I've admired you and your work over the years.  Thanks so much for all you've done for all of us who aspire to be as good as you are on the platform and off.


            You’re a good man, Allen.

Of course, my head is swelling with such praise. But that is not the reason I've shared the email with you. I share it because I want you to write your own “love letter” to someone who has influenced your life. Someone who has made your life better. Someone, perhaps, who you have never acknowledged before.

And don’t wait until February 14th to do it. Write the letter now, and to others throughout the year. Make every day Valentine’s Day.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Because Sometimes Funeral Planning Is Funny...

(Thanks to Jenny Hansen for this piece which was originally posted on her More Cowbell blog.)

No, I haven’t fallen off my rocker on this fine Monday morning. I’ve got my mama on my mind. You see, I gardened over the weekend, putting in about 100 daffodil bulbs. Gardening and baking are inextricably tied to my mother, since she taught me to do both.

A quick run-down about my mom, who passed away at age 65 back in January of 2004…

  • 3 words to describe her: compassionate, generous, irreverent.
  • She was completely, incredibly awesome. Really.
  • She was a tall woman (6’1″) and the first female to letter in 5 sports at her high school.
  • A nurse for 43 years, she spent much of that time in Oncology.
  • She was married to my father for less than 10 years and spent the rest of her life single.
  • Maxine cartoons remind us all of her…in our family she was known as ”the Queen of the One-Liner.” My mama was a stitch.

The night she died, we all quibbled over her Xanax stash, knowing we’d need it to get some sleep before doing all the work death involves. Any of you who’ve done this know there’s a million  important details to get through.

My brother and I had lots of help but some of the duties just naturally fell to us. We put my mom’s purse off for a day or so, but the time came to sort through it.

When we got to her wallet, we found all these slips of paper with beautiful quotes on friendship. Of course, I cried, so my brother patted me and kept going through all the other stuff she had tucked in there.

All of a sudden, he elbows me and says, “Sis…check this out,” and hands me a stack of bright orange cards.

“What is it?” I sniffled, not reaching to take them.

“Just read it!” I grabbed them, looked down, and burst out laughing (language alert here). In huge bold letters, they said:

If you fuck like you park,
you’ll never get it in.

“Oh my Jesus. She has a whole stash of these things?”

“Obviously she’s putting these on people’s cars when they piss her off.” My brother snatched them back. ”I could use these things. Do you mind if I keep ‘em?”

When I spoke to the minister later that day, he asked if I’d made decisions about what to include in my mom’s service.

I was telling him about the beautiful messages we’d found in her wallet when my brother started yelling from down the hall. “Are you going to tell him what ELSE you found in her wallet??!”

I covered the phone and yelled back. “No I’m not telling him! Are you crazy?”

I ignored all the choice comments from my Bag Whore brother and got back on the phone with the minister, apologizing for how loud my brother was.

His first words were, “So, you’re not going to tell me??”

I blushed so hard, I thought I’d faint. “I’d rather not. There’s cursing involved.”

“Oh, come on… Your mom was a spicy lady. I’d love to hear.”

Obviously he missed her as much as we did, so I told him and he busted a gut laughing.

My aunts were horrified when I relayed the conversation. At the same time, they both wailed, “YOU TOLD THE MINISTER??!” 

They all live in a fairly small town in mid-Missouri so I apologized and promised to mind my manners from there on out.

Then we got to the funeral parlor…

Like most of the big events in my family, we all showed up to offer support. I had aunts, uncles and cousins sitting alongside my brother and I. Plus, my mom’s best friend was there. We’d just gathered for my grandmother’s service the prior year, so we assumed the place was used to the likes of us.

Obviously, the previous funeral director hadn’t shared with the new guy that we travel in packs during times of need. He looked at all 14 of us and said he’d be back with more chairs.

Once we were all seated in a circle, with my brother and I on either side of Mr. Funeral Director, we hashed out the service (which involves a lot of people shouting it out when they think of it).

When we got to the end, I said, ”I know it might sound kind of morbid, but if any of you would like some of her ashes, you may have them.”

My cousin, Aaron (who was an irrepressible 30 year old at the time), looked at Mr. Funeral Man and said, “So how many ashes are we talking about?”

The funeral director looked like he’d swallowed a toad.

“Um…well. Uh, they come in plastic bag inside a hard plastic case about this big by this big.” And he moved his hands to demonstrate a 10 x 14 x 4 inch bag.

My brother reared back, looking completely offended. “That’s IT?? That’s all we get!?! She was a BIG GIRL!”

The room went completely silent. 

The funeral director’s mouth opened and closed like a guppy.

Then the snickers started…

They spread around the room until we were all laughing so hard we couldn’t stop.

My uncle (who’d been in the restroom) came FLYING into the room. “You guys need to CUT IT OUT. There’s people crying and grieving out there and you’re in here laughing and carrying on.”

He turned to the funeral director and shook his hand. “Thank you for your time. We need to GO.” He sent the lot of us a stern look that promised we’d be sorry if we didn’t STOP LAUGHING.

I swear, we tried. We just couldn’t stop.

We stumbled out of the funeral home, clutching our sides and gasping for breath, running for our cars so we could collapse in private. Then we all toddled off to lunch at my mom’s favorite burger joint and laughed some more.

Here’s what I know, all these years later: My mother watched us giggle our way through most of her funeral arrangements and, wherever she was, she LOVED it. I wouldn’t go back and change any of it.

Well, except for keeping her here so she could make me laugh that hard in person.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Mid-Month Mirth Memo: January 2012

Do Lipton Tea employees take 'coffee breaks?' 

Whatever happened to Preparations A through G?

If 4 out of 5 people SUFFER from diarrhea...does that mean that one out of five enjoys it?

JOKE OF THE MONTH (an oldie but goodie):
A group of seniors were sitting around talking about all their ailments.
"My arms have gotten so weak I can hardly lift this cup of coffee," said one.
"Yes, I know," said another. "My cataracts are so bad; I can't even see my coffee."
"I couldn't even mark an "X" at election time, my hands are so crippled," volunteered a third.
"I can't turn my head because of the arthritis in my neck," said a fourth, to which several nodded weakly in agreement.
"My blood pressure pills make me so dizzy!" exclaimed another.
"I forget where I am, and where I'm going," said another.
"I guess that's the price we pay for getting old," winced an old man as he slowly shook his head.
The others nodded in agreement.
"Well, count your Blessings," said a woman cheerfully..."Thank God we can all still drive".
When asked, "How would you go about achieving world peace if you had the time?"
Woody Allen responded:
"I think universal harmony is a pipe-dream and it may be more productive to focus on
more modest goals, like a ban on yodeling."

The Healing Power of Humor.
Now in a 39th printing and 9th foreign language translation. 
Have you read it yet? Available at Amazon, Barnes&Noble and other online booksellers, as well as from your local bookstore and http://www.allenklein.com/healing.htm