No 45 11-10-17 Nothing is ever lost by courtesy

No 45 Changing Lives through Dancing
By David Earl Woodbury

Friday, November 10, 2017

Nothing is ever lost by courtesy

“Nothing is ever lost by courtesy. It is the cheapest of pleasures, costs nothing, and conveys much.”

– Erastus Wiman (1834 – 1904)

Canadian journalist and businessman

Growing up, my dad always said to my mom “Be sweet Miz Woodbury”. Why, she had a direct option on people and situations. I’m just the same. I’m quick to speak and fast to react. My weakness is that my buttons get pushed so fast that I can’t get them under control and bam, there goes my big mouth!

What’s the answer? This courtesy quote is excellent. The answer is wait a moment before speaking and reacting. Now at 61, finally I take a moment before saying the first thing that pops into my mouth. I have learned to take a breath, pause, and listen to the other person finish their sentence. My dear friend, Roz DeBeve, always said that God had perfect mathematics when He gave us two ears and one mouth. Roz said to be successful, listen twice as much as you speak!

For another aspect of courtesy, I have learned from my great friend, Linda Greenberg, to say “I’m sorry”. Perhaps there is a disagreement between two people, and you are caught in the middle of it and you did nothing wrong to either party. To be the peacemaker, just say “I’m sorry” that happened and just take out the fight and be the calming factor. I’ve seen many fires put out with this simple act of courtesy.

Monsignor Lloyd Torgerson said during a homily a few years ago that he had gone through a major change in his life. He said he would get angry and be “in the right” in arguments. He stood before us, hands behind his back, and he said, “Now I just say, I’m sorry” and I don’t fight. His message had a profound effect on me. Does it matter if I am right? It matters if I am a great peacemaker and am able to help, console, guide, and repair situations in a positive way.

“We cheerfully assume that in some mystic way love conquers all, that good outweighs evil in the just balances of the universe and that at the eleventh hour something gloriously triumphant will prevent the worst before it happens.”

– Brooks Atkinson (1894 – 1984)

American theatre critic

The biggest part of courtesy for me is laughter. Of the four personality types, Sanguine, Phlegmatic, Melancholy, and Choleric, I am a Chosen Sanguine and a retired Choleric. That means that I was a jerk for a long time and did not laugh enough. I was way too strong and made others see that I was always right. Guess what readers, this was not good for my heart and I almost had a heart attack over this.

Now, I find that courtesy through laughter is a true medicine. When I am dancing and we make a mistake, we look at each other and say “what was that?” and we laugh and give each other a hug a move on. What a great approach to teaching and this keeps my students happy, and they do learn how to dance beautifully loving each and every moment.

Yes, I’m quick just like my mom J. Clair was, yet she was also a very polite and gracious woman. My dad always had a great laugh and he smiled at all who were around him. I’m so blessed to and honored to be their son and have their Southern characteristics in my personality.

Courtesy: try this. Just go out and give a smile and share a laugh with someone. Tell them how great they look today and how happy you are to see them. Ask them how they are and say you are looking forward to seeing them again. Remember, the smile we see in other’s faces is our own smile we are giving to them. From our quote today,

“It is the cheapest of pleasures, costs nothing and conveys much”.

Thanks for reading!

David Earl Woodbury

Keep on Dancing!










A Spark of Heavenly Fire 2-12-16

2016-02-07 14.04.39

No 7. Changing Lives through Dancing
By David Earl Woodbury

Friday, February 12, 2016

A Spark of Heavenly Fire

“There is in every true woman’s heart a spark of heavenly fire, which lies dormant in the broad daylight of prosperity; but which kindles up, and beams and blazes in the dark hour of adversity.” – Washington Irving (1783-1859) American Writer

Steve and Georgetta TOC 2016

For 40 years I have been associated with, guided by, taught by, led by, worked for, and mentored by some of the strongest women in the world. These women are amazing leaders and full of light and vision. They have guided my life and directed me forward into my current amazing life. Thank you my wonderful life-changing ladies! I love you all!

Mr. Kimmins TOC 2016

“Man has been endowed with reason, with the power to create, so that he can add to what he’s been given.” – Anton Chekhov (1860 – 1904) Russian Dramatist and Writer

Steve and Georgetta TOC 2016

Chekhov had it right for me because I feel empowered, full of power to create, yet each day I feel the spark of heavenly fire that helps me to grow and renew my strength daily.

Area 7 Santa Monica TOC

“The aim of an argument or discussion should not be victory, but progress.” – Joseph Joubert (1754-1824) French Philosopher

East Meets West TOC 2016

Not every day is a victory day for me. Especially during this season of Lent, I am award of my shortcomings and am aware of where I need to improve in my life. The progress I feel is the most important part of Lent for me. Just get a little bit better each day and don’t go backwards into the old ways.

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“Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but rather we have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit.” – Aristotle

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When in my old life I was a 100% Choleric personality, I met someone who was 100% a Sanguine personality. He was always up, friendly and happy. It dawned on me that he was, every day, practicing the Habit of Happiness. He was choosing to be happy in his life.

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Now, I am a retired Choleric. It’s not good for the heart to always be right (in your own mind) and always upset when things aren’t going your way. As a Chosen Sanguine, I find myself laughing rather than being so cross and “right” all the time. My “spark of heavenly fire” often gets snuffed out when I do not let joy and happiness take me over.

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Whether or not you are observing these 40 days of Lent, or just trying to be a better person daily, try this. Cultivate that “spark of heavenly fire” in your life and share it with others. Just see how you too will become a “chosen Sanguine” in your own life!

Check this out:


Thank you,

David Earl Woodbury (email me if you like this blog)