Out on a Limb
A Monthly Newsletter from Martha Clark Scala
Invest in bringing joy back to your life.
January 2016



Welcome to Out on a Limb, a monthly newsletter from Martha Clark Scala. This free e-zine is meant to invite and inspire you to maximize the joy in your life.

Know What Matters

There was no Out on a Limb in December. By mid-November, I knew the topic I wanted to explore but as December crept up on me, I could not figure out how to write about it constructively. I turned to collage, as I often do, to explore the topic but my ability to carve out enough time to write on this sensitive topic eluded me. Can you guess what the topic was by looking at this collage?

I wanted to write and complain about prejudice, a total joy-kill, without being prejudiced against prejudiced people! A very tall order. I do not understand what is so difficult about appreciation and celebration of different-ness. Is it challenging? Yes, at times. A non-smoker is inclined to discriminate against a smoker. Extroverts gripe about introverts. People who do not follow their local teams might regard a hard-core sports fan as obsessive or even repugnant. I know there are times when it is difficult to tolerate difference but it is part of life and if nothing else, it certainly makes things more interesting.

December came and went, and I got nowhere but as January 2016 neared, I thought more about what matters to me, and realized this is a more productive approach to the goal of maximizing joy.

It does not matter who or what you believe in; what matters is respect for others who believe or behave differently.

It does not matter what color your skin is; what matters is that conclusions are not drawn based solely on the color of skin, eyes, hair, or anything else.

It should not matter what you think of me; what matters is kind regard for self and others.

It does not matter who or how you choose to love; what matters is that you have love in your life.

What matters most to you? As I reviewed the sentences above, I noted that what seems to matter most to me is an open mind. May this be a part of your recipe (and the world’s, too) for joy in 2016.

“We’re all just walking each other home.”
                     ~ Ram Dass


Your January 2016 Prompts for Joy

Click here to see a 12-year old kid’s moving response to Simon Cowell’s prejudice.

Click here for a demonstration of the beauty that collaboration and cooperation can bring. (Thank you, Cassie Murray!)

All previous Prompts for Joy (PFJs) can be found at my website, unless the video url is no longer functional.


Pictured Above

This message was carved into a wooden bench at the New Camaldoli Monastery in Lucia, CA; I just wanted to pass it on to you.


Archives Available

To re-read or share past Out On A Limb newsletters, click here, or type the following url into your browser: http://www.mcscala.com/html/EZineArchives.html.

By no means do I have joy “figured out.” Please do not assume that I do! I write Out On a Limb as much as a meditation for myself in the ongoing pursuit of joy, as for you. I think this pursuit is a lifelong journey and that the full experience of joy is, at best, episodic. May we all have more episodes!


Martha Clark Scala, MFT · 721 Colorado Ave., Suite 201, Palo Alto, CA 94303 ·

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