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Amazing Things Will Happen: A Real-World Guide on Achieving Success and Happiness by C.C. Chapman

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Chapter 22

Focus on the Flame

Christopher S. Penn is a marketing writer and cofounder of PodCamp. Every year he holds a special New Year’s celebration at his house. There are no noisemakers, champagne, or loud music.

Instead, it is a small group of close friends sitting in front of his fireplace, holding sticks and bowls of leaves and spending quiet quality time together.

This celebration is a goma-kan, or fire ceremony. Chris explained that goma-kan “has its roots deep in Asian cultures and lore, stretching from Japan all the way back to the Himalayas, and is a powerful means of helping us focus on what we want to achieve and what conditions, internal and external, stand in our way of success.”

Every year there is someone new at the ceremony, and you can tell that this person doesn’t know what’s coming. Most people don’t make the time for quiet moments of awesome such as this in their lives. More people should.

Although the details of the ceremony must remain secret, the end goal I can share with you. It boils down to being able to focus on the flame of your idea and goal. By sharing our goals with the fire, it gives us a focus point, something to think about, to picture in our minds, and to bring us back to what we need to do throughout the year.

Chris is a showcase example of someone who is constantly learning and, more important, openly sharing what he learns with others.

“I host it every year because it’s important to me to share the knowledge my teachers have given me,” says ...

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