Can You Enthusiastically Embrace the Present?


Between Rosh Hashannah and Yom Kippur, the days of Jewish New Year, it is a time to reflect, remember and decide how to spend the coming year. I participate at Stephen Wise Temple in Los Angeles nearly every Shabbat and am thrilled to be with my family for this time of The Days of Awe.

Tashlich 2016: Can you enthusiastically embrace the present?We can all choose to be happy and live in the present. But do you?

From our Erev Rosh Hashannah Prayer Book:
“Each year I grow a year older. Have I added maturity to age this year? Have I become wiser since last year? Will I be stronger in the year to come? Will I use my time better?

Where did the last year go? And what can I remember of it? Those daily irritations that so troubled me: I cannot even remember them now.

What do I remember of last year? What do I want for the coming year that will be worth remembering next Rosh Hashannah?”

I want to have realistic expectations for myself and goals that appropriately challenge me. I read this in the prayer book:

“We will never be perfect. Yet what is divine in us is our refusal to desist from trying to improve> We must distinguish between teh important and the petty. We must understand the difference between the permament and the fleeting. And we must develop the desire to live richly, to live nobly and help make possible a society where other people can also live this way.” 

There was a responsive reading that really spoke to me:

If we must face failure, Help us learn endurance. If we achieve success, Help us learn gratitude. If we must face disappointment, Help us learn patience. If we must face danger, Help us find courage.”

Can You Enthusiastically Embrace the Present?What are your plans? What do you wish for? How will you make it come true?

Last year, I focused on building We Said Go Travel LLC into a real business and I can see progress. I now have over 600 travel videos and over 800,000 video views on multiple platforms. I was invited on the trip I most wanted to go on and I leave for this week. I could not be more excited! I am contemplating my next goals and I can see them all turning into reality.

Thank you for your support of me, We Said Go Travel and my Travel Writing Award. If you know someone with a story to tell, please ask them to join the nearly 2,000 writers and travelers who have been published in my award on my site.

Happy New Year! G’mar Hatima Tova! May you be inscribed into the Book of Life. Lisa

Wondering about services at Stephen Wise Temple? Here are three of my videos from recent services:

Want to see my most recent adventures in the Caribbean? I sailed for the first time on a Carnival Cruise out of Galveston, Texas:

Thank you to Rabbi David Woznica for his inspiring sermon that led me in the direction of this article. Prayer book quotes are from “Machzor for the Days of Awe” from Stephen S Wise Temple, revised 1991

Happy New Year Gmar Hatima Tova Can you Enthusiastically Embrace the Present?

Lisa Ellen Niver

Lisa Ellen Niver is an award-winning travel expert who has explored 102 countries and six continents. A graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, she worked on cruise ships for seven years and backpacked for three years in Asia. She is the founder of the website WeSaidGoTravel which is read in 235 countries and was named #3 on Rise Global’s top 1,000 Travel Blogs. Niver is represented by Chip MacGregor of MacGregor Literary, Inc. With more than 150,000 followers across social media, she has hosted Facebook Live for USA Today 10best, is verified on Twitter and listed on IMDb, and is the Social Media Manager for the Los Angeles Press Club. You can find Lisa Niver talking travel on broadcast television at KTLA TV Los Angeles, Satellite Media Tours, The Jet Set TV and Orbitz travel webisodes as well as her YouTube channel, where her WeSaidGoTravel videos have over 1.6 million views. After three months on TikTok, Instagram Reels, Facebook Reels and YouTube Shorts, she had over 500,000 (1/2 million) views. As a journalist, Niver has interviewed Deepak Chopra, Olympic medalists, and numerous bestselling authors and been invited to both the Oscars and the United Nations. She has been a judge for the Gracie Awards for the Alliance of Women in Media, and has run 15 travel competitions on her website, publishing over 2,500 writers and photographers from 75 countries. For her print and digital stories as well as her television segments, she has been awarded three Southern California Journalism Awards and two National Arts and Entertainment Journalism Awards and been a finalist twenty times.   Niver has published more than 2000 articles, in more than three dozen magazines and journals including National Geographic, Wired, Teen Vogue, HuffPost Personal, POPSUGAR, Ms. Magazine, Luxury Magazine, Smithsonian, Sierra Club, Saturday Evening Post, AARP, AAA Explorer Magazine, American Airways, Delta Sky, enRoute (Air Canada), Hemispheres, Jewish Journal, Myanmar Times, BuzzFeed, Robb Report, Scuba Diver Life, Ski Utah, Trivago, Undomesticated, USA Today, TODAY, Wharton Magazine, and Yahoo. Awards National Arts and Entertainment Journalism Awards 2021 Winner: Book Critic: Ms. Magazine “Untamed: Brave Means Living From the Inside Out” 2019 Winner: Soft News Feature for Film/TV: KTLA TV “Oscars Countdown to Gold with Lisa Niver” 2019 Finalist for: Soft News, Business/Music/Tech/Art Southern California Journalism Awards 2022 Finalist: Book Criticism 2021 Winner: Technology Reporting 2021 Finalist: Book Criticism 2020 Winner: Print Magazine Feature: Hemispheres Magazine, “Painter by the Numbers, Rembrandt” 2020 Finalist: Online Journalist of the Year, Activism Journalism, Educational Reporting, Broadcast Lifestyle Feature 2019 Finalist: Broadcast Television Lifestyle Segment for “Ogden Ski Getaway” 2018 Finalist: Science/Technology Reporting, Travel Reporting, Personality Profile 2017 Winner: Print Column “A Journey to Freedom over Three Passovers” Social Media Presence YouTube Channel: We Said Go Travel (1.6 million views) Short form video:TikTok, Instagram Reels, Facebook Reels, YouTube Shorts Twitter: lisaniver (90,000 followers) Instagram: lisaniver (24,000 followers) Pinterest: We Said Go Travel (20,000 followers and over 70,000 monthly views) Facebook: lisa.niver (5,000 followers); We Said Go Travel (3,000 followers) LinkedIn: lisaellenniver (9000 contacts)

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