Monthly Archives: May 2014

Always Time To Be Kind

“It has always seemed strange to me… the things we admire in men, kindness and generosity, openness, honesty, understanding and feeling, are the concomitants of failure in our system. And those traits we detest, sharpness, greed, acquisitiveness, meanness, egotism and self-interest, are the traits of success. And while men admire the quality of the first they love the produce of the second.”  John Steinbeck

“Ask yourself: Have you been kind today? Make kindness your daily modus operandi and change your world.”    Annie Lennox

I am truly amazed at how easily anyone, be it friend, acquaintance, family member or shop keeper, carelessly lashes out with their words. I am sincerely implying, that I find it extremely sad that we so readily step on another. It is as if we have lost our moral compass, and our compassion. I don’t know about other people, but when someone does this to me, I find it difficult and challenging to concentrate. I would compare it to having the wind knocked out of you. Continue reading

Kindness Never Fails

“Life has taught me that it is not for our faults that we are disliked and even hated, but for our qualities.”     Bernard Berenson

It is a quote worth digesting. There is more truth to these words than we would like to believe. Whenever one tries to act with humility and thought, it makes others question the motives. It also fosters a conscience, which produces an uncomfortable feeling. It’s time to recognize our own uniqueness. If we are in the presence of a kind person, it shouldn’t demean us, but instead it should encourage us. Each of us has the capacity to educate another. We can’t always be in top form. Those times when we need help, let us lean on another. Likewise when the other person needs help, it is our turn to do the inspiring. We are not in any competition. We don’t ever have to  be in a contest. It really is okay to support each other, be happy for another person’s achievement, and exhibit empathy for another person’s sorrows. As they say, we’re all in the soup together. Continue reading

Life’s Expectations

“I have no right, by anything I do or say, to demean a human being in his own eyes. What matters is not what I think of him; it is what he thinks of himself. To undermine a man’s self-respect is a sin.”  Antoine de Saint-Exupery

“I think a lot of people have lost respect for the individual, you know, the individual, the person who doesn’t conform.” Erykah Badu

How we view the world can influence our actions every day. When we are in the womb we have the same temperature for the most part, and we eat whenever and however much we want. We always hang out with our mothers and feel continuous love.  After we are born things change. We are still with mom a good deal of time, but dinner may not always be on cue. Staying warm is a tough problem, especially if we were born in the winter time. We cry when we need attention, food, warmth or anything else. We usually receive care within a small wait time. Continue reading

Knowing The Facts

“This is my simple religion. There is no need for temples; No need for complicated philosophy. Our own brain; our own heart is our temple.” Dalai Lama

“Be  kind whenever possible. It is always possible.” Dalai Lama

How easy it is for us to judge a person’s tribulations. We all have opinions and sometimes we state our opinions, even when we are not asked. Other times we voice our thoughts to others, regarding matters that we simply don’t have all the facts. I know whenever I hear anything immediately my mind begins calculating what the truth is. I am more aware as I get older how detrimental this can be, if I don’t consider everyone’s version of the truth. If I don’t know everything about the situation, my ability to assess is hindered.

Most of the time in life events that are challenging, it is hard for any of us to cope with the gravity of a situation. We might listen, but deep down we question and review and sometimes have differing conclusions. Sometimes a person in need, who is dealing with a tremendously difficult circumstance, requires support in the form of a listening ear. They don’t want judgments or agreements or even suggestions. They may need  someone to say, tomorrow will be better so hang in there, and keep your hope alive. Continue reading

Actions That Avoid Conflict

“What you dislike in another take care to correct in yourself.” Thomas Spratt

 “Our greatest glory consists not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.” Oliver Goldsmith

Insecurity breeds contempt for any kind of boastful comment. Every time a person shares the most recent event in her young or older child’s life, does not mean he or she is boastful. Size is not better. Learning is not intelligence. Athletic ability is not valor or prowess. Beauty never denotes inner quality. Why then do we fret? We cannot be insecure in our own hearts.

Pitting siblings or grandchildren against each other creates animosity and tension. Stop self-doubt. Each of us holds the potential for greatness. Maybe if we respond with a simple reply of acknowledgement to the parent, we will avoid confrontation regarding who is the superior person. We avoid making a memory we’d rather forget. Continue reading

Finding Contentment

“Most of one’s life is one prolonged effort to prevent oneself thinking.”            Aldous Huxley

“It is very important to generate a good attitude, a good heart, as much as possible. From this, happiness in both the short term and the long term for both yourself and others will come.”  Dalai Lamaa

“How is it possible to be solidly aware of where you are going, and what you are doing one day, and the next day shake your head in dismay. Just when you reason you have arrived at the answers, you are sent backwards in remorse. It keeps one on their toes, because you never know when the hit is coming, and from where it will come.”    Anonymous

I began reflecting on contentment. It leaves us befuddled, because we all just want a little satisfaction, security and trust that the world is okay, and  so are we. As we all are aware, the world is anything but okay, and we live in fear about almost everything in our lives. As soon as a  baby is born, we worry about college, never mind if we can afford the diapers and baby food. Our lives are spent in worry and discontent. It is no wonder most of us suffer, or will suffer with stress related health issues or illness.

All everyone requires is some serenity in their lives. It just cannot be found. I worried and feared and finally concluded, I couldn’t live my life fully, in worry and fear. It got old, unhealthy, boring and unpleasant. That is when I began to ruminate over what I was doing. My days were passing, and I  was hardly in them. I was too busy having anxiety attacks about something. If I wasn’t concerned with a relationship, it was my job performance, the amount of money I had in the bank, how many kids I wanted versus how many we could afford, and doubt about whether  my kids had enough activities or too many. I questioned if I had to attend all of those showers, weddings and birthday parties. I fretted about painting the house of fixing the yard. My social attention to inviting friends for dinner, was a concern worth mentioning. Continue reading

A Purposeful Life

“Our civilization lacks humane feeling. We are humans who are insufficiently humane! We must realize that and seek to find a new spirit. We have lost the sight of this ideal because we are solely occupied with thoughts of men instead of remembering the thoughts of the spirit. By having a reverence for life, we enter into a spiritual relation with the world, by practicing reverence for life we become good, deep, and alive.”       Albert Schweitzer

Every one of us needs to feel necessary, desired and worthy. Perhaps this is why we get moody, or depressed at times. So many days pass with feelings of worthlessness. Our existence is in question. How are we benefiting the world, family, friends or even one person. On those moody days we may have no answers.

I believe we all have needs, wants and definitely a purpose. Sometimes we are looking in the wrong places and just not seeing it. Purpose has to do with long term objectives, and we observe short term goals. That is why some of us miss our own merit. Not to rehash what was said many times, nor discuss the same issues, but because of our requirement of instant gratification, we can’t focus on the future. This in itself makes it difficult to grasp our significance. Continue reading

A Happy State Of Mind

“Watch your THOUGHTS, they become WORDS. Watch your WORDS, they become ACTIONS. Watch your ACTIONS, they become HABITS. Watch your HABITS, they become CHARACTER. Watch your CHARACTER, it becomes your DESTINY.” Fran Outlaw

Has anyone ever felt like they were floundering? useless? defeated? My thoughts exactly. I started wondering why we get to that point. We worry about what we do, because people might misinterpret it. We worry about what we say, because it might not express what we meant to say. We worry about what everyone else said, and did, because we reflect on the meaning, behind their words and actions.

Our thoughts make us agonize. I decided it was time to control my thoughts. I’m not perfect. I venture to say, none of us is without fault. We need to stop putting so much pressure on each other. I’m going to accept that what you said or did was meant in the best of intentions, even if it came out all wrong and caused me pain. I’ll accept that you had a bad day, week, month or year. I’ll accept that you were dealing with family or health issues. I’ll accept that you haven’t yet learned to let the small stuff float away. I hope after all of this, we will always be good friends or good family members. I also expect you will give me the same courtesy. Continue reading

Successfully Prioritizing Life

“Happiness is like a butterfly. The more you chase it, the more it will elude you. But if you turn your attention to other things, it comes and softly sits on your shoulder.” Nathaniel Hawthorne

“If you haven’t time for a tug at your pants leg, your schedule is too busy.” Robert Brault

Recently I had a lot of time to think and reflect. I realized that the saying, “stop to smell the roses”, is undoubtedly true. When we are forced to stop for a moment, our greatest reflections come to the forefront of our minds. They remind us to review what it is we are doing with our lives. Do we spend it being jealous or envious of others? Do we spend it attempting to get even for the wrongs another did to us? Do we spend it making money or fame? Are we anxious or doubtful of others?

None of these things makes us happy. Revenge will leave us empty and disgusted with ourselves. Fame and fortune will find us friends who will leave us as quickly as they came. Doubt and anxiety wear us down and sap our strength. Happiness is inner serenity, and comes from the contentment of our own lives. We really need to dwell on the positive things in our lives. To do this we must slow down and “Smell the coffee, or the flowers.” It might just change our focus towards something that is more worthwhile or inspiring. Continue reading

Ignore Cruel Criticism

“Little of the great cruelty shown by men can really be attributed to cruel instinct. Most of it comes from thoughtlessness or inherited habit.”     Albert Schweitzer

Cruelty like any other vice requires no motives outside of itself; It only requires opportunity.”      George Eliot

I find some people are too quick to critique others, yet they are the first to complain if anyone analyzes them. It is more hurtful than they will ever know, especially when they influence other people who have no idea what the truth actually is. It amazes me that we take a quick snapshot of a situation, and then profess to have the gospel. If that isn’t bad enough, we proceed  to share our truth about an occurrence with others.

Some things are private and better left unspoken. Those who choose to voice uncalled for opinions, are treading in a danger zone. I feel sorry for them because at a certain point in time, they may have to experience the same problem themselves, to comprehend the whole picture. That is sad when we cannot have empathy for other’s, without walking in their shoes. Continue reading