Intentions

“Good intentions  are not enough; commitment and sacrifice are necessary.” Laurence G. Boldt ”

Just because I am strong enough to handle pain doesn’t mean I deserve it.” Pix

“When our actions are based on good intentions, our soul has no regrets.” Anthony Douglas “No man ever steps in the same river twice cause it’s not the same river and he is not the same man.” Heractitus

“Integrity is doing the right thing even when no one is looking.” C. S. Lewis

Our intentions regarding any matter are mixed and hidden because we are trying to fathom ourselves and others. It may not make sense but if you ask someone why they performed a certain act of kindness or meanness they usually give a group of responses for the one question. It made sound like, “I wanted to help them and they supported me and I felt like  I owed them.” The list continues in a confusing way and you wonder why you asked the question in the first place. Continue reading “Intentions”

Humiliation Is Shattering

Have you ever been the victim of humiliation and felt like leaving a place , conversation or person who is victimizing you? I know there are degrees of everything but subtle or intense humiliation makes no difference to the victim because they know they are the subject or target of abuse. Now that is a ridiculous  word to use some people might say. However when a person experiences humiliation they don’t stop to think about degrees and if they are in a lousy mood to begin with, they feel the humiliation even more.

“Humiliation is the beginning of sanctification.” John Donne

“Abuse and neglect negate love. Care and affirmation the opposite of abuse and humiliation are the foundation of love. No one can rightfully proclaim to be loving when behaving in such a way.”    Bell Hooks

“Humiliation of one person over another is often used as a way of exerting power over them, and a common form of oppression or abuse.”

I remember reading about manners one time and I was surprised to read that manners did not consist of proper etiquette or being rich or well educated. Manners they mentioned was making every person feel comfortable and relaxed no matter what their race, religion, economic or educational attainment was. It was amazing and I thought about it for a long time. There are those people who can tell you how wonderful you look even if you misjudged an occasion and wore the wrong attire. They pretend they don’t even notice. They are special people and a pleasure to make acquaintances with. Continue reading “Humiliation Is Shattering”

SPANKING

“Tired mothers find that spanking takes less time than reasoning and penetrates sooner to the seat of the memory.”    Will Durant

“Spanking and verbal criticism have become, to many parents, more important tools of child rearing than approval.” Phil Donahue

“Spanking is simply another form of terrorism. It teaches the victims that might makes right, and that problems can be solved through the use of violence by the strong against the weak.”

 “Infliction of pain or discomfort, however minor, is not a desirable method of communicating with children.”     American Medical Association

How and why did the state of Massachusetts hinder the advancement of our human evolution? I truly was shocked to hear of the Massachusetts, Justices decision to promote the guidelines for the use of physical punishment by parents. As a teacher, I am aware that loving a child and displaying kindness works far better. How is there anything LEGAL in guidelines promoting physical punishment by anyone? I suppose it sounds good and appeases parents who choose this form of discipline. Continue reading “SPANKING”

Giving And Receiving

“It’s not how much we give but how much love we put into giving.”    Mother Teresa

“A kind gesture can reach a wound that only compassion can heal.”    Steve Maraboli

“Love only grows by sharing. You can only have more for yourself by giving it away to others.”     Brian Tracy

“I must be willing to give whatever it takes to do good to others. This requires that I be willing to give until it hurts. Otherwise, there is no true love in me, and I bring injustice, not peace, to those around me.”     Mother Teresa

I don’t know about others but I can tell you how many times I have weighed in my mind, what pain or hurt others caused me. It seems silly and absurd and definitely not a worthy thing to do. So I question why I am guilty of doing it frequently. If I loved unconditionally, I would not have this problem at all. I recall how much I love my kids and profess to love them unconditionally. I do love them unconditionally but when it comes to others, I fail miserably. When I get myself composed, I fill my heart with love again until the next trying situation. Continue reading “Giving And Receiving”

Living With Despair Or Hope

Living With Despair Or Hope“Oft hope is born when all is forlorn.”     J.R.R. Tolkien

“She wondered that hope was so much harder then despair.”     Patricia Briggs

“Losing your life is not the worst thing that can happen. The worst thing is to lose your reason for living.”     Jo Nesbo

“The difference between hope and despair is a different way of telling stories from the same facts.”     Alain de Botton

How many of us are fearful at every turn. I would guess that most of us worry constantly. We fear so many things that we don’t even count or connect them anymore. Our anxiety level increases along with the stress. What we don’t see is the numerous diseases we encounter because of the pressure of our burdens. We may be able to walk through fire to help someone, especially our families, but facing the issues of daily life may bring us to our knees. I heard someone say that there would always be prayer in schools, because there would always be tests.

The wonder of why we succumb to life’s strain is not especially hard to understand.  Facing problems head on is not the preference for most of us.  We perhaps prefer to think about it when we are forced. Perhaps  that is for the best in certain respects. Life does appear to wear us all down to the point of making us feel defeated.

Maybe we ought to reflect on what life means, and what goals we have set. Perhaps we doom ourselves by trying to gain the same items as everyone else, or have a  certain amount of money. Most of us take pride in the achievements of our kids. The honor falls on us so we think. Taking a deeper look in what we believe, and search for, may produce surprising answers.

What we want for our kids may not be what they ever wanted. What our kids do or don’t achieve has nothing to do with our own  happiness or disappointment. Our dreams may not be their dreams. Having reached the pinnacle of life may not look the same to each individual. I realize there are certain things that define all humans and their needs and wants, but perhaps taking a more profound look into ourselves, may solve some of our issues.

The pressure is on kids to achieve at school, be a hero at sports, and work for a scholarship for college. At the very least we hope they will gain entrance into colleges. Those of us without a lot of money hope to see our kids in a better position than we ever found ourselves. We may feel cheated or denied access to the good things in life. It can easily leave one bitter. That is not difficult to understand. But disappointment occurs in every level of society. There is no magic cure for heartache. Being human almost implies there will be plenty of demanding things to endure and master along with the good.

As a human, it is important for us to be in control. I believe now that once we give up that notion, life appears easier to accept. The ugly truth is that we are never really in control of anything. The happenings of life are slow and quick, happy and sad. Some things we can prepare for while others are shocks to the system. There are slow daily grinds,  and fast horrendous unexpected obstacles to deal with. Most likely none of us would change places with others.

It may not be exactly the same, but fear creeps into our lives and can become the unwanted guest. Teens build up so much stress that many teens at such a young age, figure life is too hard to continue. Again the pressure to win it all is tremendous. Where is the reflection of life itself. Perhaps we don’t appreciate things as much as we should, myself included. We should not have to value something after it is gone.

I recently lost my dog and the lack of her presence is so challenging  to endure.  I am not attempting to compare an animals loss to the loss of people, but it dawned on me how many more times I might have petted her or played in the yard with her. It has led me to comprehend life as fluid motion. It moves swiftly onward so whatever we value ought to be appreciated at the moment, especially while we can still enjoy it.

Fear is insidious. Teens worry about tests, dating and being accepted. Adults worry about money, their kids, homes, spouses and careers. Then life happens and throws in all kinds of roadblocks. We all have so many issues, it is impossible to mention all of them. We come to a false belief in the notion that our best is never good enough. That adds to our anxiety and sends us running in circles while searching for meaning in life. So many of us just keep moving and thinking the motion somehow will fix our worry. Facing problematic concerns is too difficult.

Now I see it as running away. I am escaping my problems by waiting for the answer to fall from the sky. I don’t face some of my worries or burdens. I simply ignore them and keep moving. One day I thought about the fact that I spend way too much time on those negative fears and concerns. Many or most of them can’t be altered, but I know I can face them if I muster my courage. Perhaps my fears can’t be crushed, but likely they can be approached, modified and understood. Accepting isn’t easy but honestly managing the fear renders it neutral. I can handle it in a variety of ways and see it for what it is.

As life moves forward we have children and then encounter problems that were unforeseen. We can lay on the battlefield defeated and discouraged, surrendering to life in defeat. Or we can face it and fight it by tackling it head on, allowing our mind heart and spirit to work together to find better answers than giving up. Perhaps we may not find the solutions we were seeking, but we might find a remedy we can work with. Enlightenment  grants us the courage to travel in a new direction.

We all hurt inside when our objectives and desires are left by the wayside. We cry for our kids and others we love when there are mistakes, pains or heartaches. What is not clear to see or understand, is that many times our cries are for ourselves and the things or ideas we longed to see happen. It is our loss that hurts. We wanted or expected certain things to happen and when they don’t go according to our plan, we are devastated. I am totally included in this group’s interpretation.

I honestly wonder if it is spiritual growth that we all need despite our efforts to avoid it or encounter it. Maybe our trials and tribulations bring about a deliverance from jealousies, envy, pride, anger, control and more. We may get knocked down but perhaps we are a better person when we get back up. It forces us to view life in a different way despite our best efforts to avoid that.

We may be forced with challenging changes that brings anxiety into our lives. But any time we have faced tremendous difficulties, we are confronted with finding our own strength to deal with the changes. Perhaps we come to acknowledge our need to appreciate those people and things we cherish. I like everyone else, take so much for granted. We lose our patience, get angry, feel envious, jealousy  and intolerant more times than we would like to admit.

I just wonder if the obstacles remind us to slow down, smell the flowers or coffee, and reflect on finding peace and serenity. If nothing else, life teaches us to have more patience, love, empathy, and compassion. It leads us towards understanding, and learning to appreciate the small  stuff. It awakens us to the little things in life that we should cherish and remember. Perhaps we are being nudged towards the good and spiritual side of ourselves. This in no way means God brings us sorrow in order to teach us something. On the contrary. I believe we are brought to the attention of what life is all about.

We all die at some point. We have bodies and souls. Most likely we should be focusing more on our inner growth than our outer enrichment. Faith and hope drives away fear and stress. In many ways faith and hope are our miracle cures. If we just slow down and look for the real meaning in our lives, we may not be so quick to toss those simple actions of a gift of dandelions from a child. The child at such a young age knows about beauty and love. As we get older we drive those messages further from our minds and hearts and embrace the frivolity of worldly desires.

By renewing our faith in a higher being, perhaps we can relieve the panicky feelings of fear, dread, jealousy, losing control, loneliness, anger, and heartache of all kinds. Mankind is really facing similar issues. We just run away from them until they catch us. Focusing on hope and love, drives away the clouds of fear and doubt. The challenge is to keep hope strong and alive. Succumbing to our fears,  leaves us defeated already from things that may never befall us.  It also creates a losing feeling before we have begun to do battle.  Faith gives us courage to accept the hope and love available.

Life has never been about finishing. Life is more of a  circle. Life is all about the ride we take. There are problems that confront all of us. Fearing the future is destroying our present with  thoughts that never come to pass.  Enduring our daily issues with faith and hope, brings courage to ride into the future with love, because life is the ride. Enjoy your life by seeing it with new eyes of peace and serenity. Whether physically, mentally, emotionally or spiritually threatened, always choose to battle with hope as your partner.

“Life is filled with unanswered questions, but it is the courage to seek those answers that continues to give meaning to life. You can spend your life wallowing in despair, wondering why you were the one who was led towards the road strewn with pain, or you can be grateful that you are strong enough to survive it.”     J.D. Stroube

“I have had to experience so much stupidity, so many vices, so much error, so much nausea, disillusionment and sorrow, just in order to become a child again and begin anew. I had to experience despair, I had to sink to the greatest mental depths, to thoughts of suicide, in order to experience grace.”    Herman Hesse

“Whatever happens in your life, no matter how troubling things might seem, do not enter the neighborhood of despair. Even when all doors remain closed, God will open up a new path only for you. Be thankful! It is easy to be thankful when all is well. A Sufi is thankful not only for what he has been given but also for all that has been denied.”     Elif Shafak

Voice Transformation

Voice Transformation“Anybody can become angry — that is easy, but to be angry with the right person and to the right degree and at the right time and for the right purpose, and in the right way — that is not within everybody’s power and is not easy.”    Aristotle

“Speak when you are angry and you will make the best speech you will ever regret.”    Ambrose Bierce

“The best fighter is never angry.”    Lao Tzu

“It is wise to direct your anger towards problems — not people; to focus your energies on answers — not excuses.”    William Arthur Ward

I was listening to a youg friend talking the other day and couldn’t help but smile. His voice which normally had an air of youthful authority, was suddenly direct even and just a tiney bit faster than normal. Of course he had an important message to give so I could see why his words were swift.

What surprised me was how different he sounded. You could hear his maturity in his speech. There was no need for his usual pushy and aggressive attitude. His voice had changed to a deliberate straightforward mode. I smiled just recalling how just a few years had past and he had definitely matured.

It made me understand how our tone, loudness, tempo, infractions, emphasized letters, drawled words and pitch made any sentence more than a sentence. It was as if it told our thoughts, age dilemma fear and mood. I believe that is why computers and technology in general will never replace the human voice. Somehow feelings, emotions attitudes and thoughts go into our every monologue and spoken interaction. We can’t hide our emotions.

Children know immediately when parents are angry about anything. The stern clipped sentences that range a bit louder than normal,  at least at the beginning of the episode, tell the kids to scatter. Dad or mom is searching for something or upset about anything and they don’t want to be the unwilling victims of a parents’ foul mood.

When parents review a bad report card they hesitate and one can envision the anger rising up their necks and into their angry red faces. Of course the child is waiting for the explosion. The parent may begin with an even slow voice but the pace picks up quickly as fast as the loudness increases. Within seconds like a rocket the words tumble out so fast the child is unable to comprehend the meaning that is being delivered. What the child does know is to simply listen and refrain from interruptions. This is accomplished and the child is at times punished grounded and sent to their room.

I remember listening to the arguments between my older brother and our father. Of course my brother had the mouth that would not remain still. As much as I admired his courage, to this day I never understood his inability to learn the importance of silence. I would watch my dad’s face sternly focus on my brother while words of wrath tumbled from his mouth. Whenever there was a pause my brother chimed in with some sort of a retort then blast off, my dad was furious.

I could observe my brother almost chuckling at the power he had to send his dad to the moon so easily. I on the other hand held my breath and hoped the incident would be short lived. Otherwise life would be difficult for all of us until the next day. I remember my father’s almost breathless words stumbling out.  The voice was almost inaudible. My dad’s body was always rigid at this point and his neck muscles stood out pulsing. How my brother thought this was funny is beyond my comprehension.

I recall being at the beach one day and watching a family in front of us interact. The young teen was asked to get a drink for his father from the cooler. The boy went to retrieve the item. When he came back his father was enraged. The boy had brought a soda rather than a beer. The man swatted the boy on th back of the head almost sending him crashing to the ground. The man snarled like a dog at his son. I remember not understanding the words but the snarls came through loud and clear. The tone was strong and gruff. I remember glancing up at the man from my head down position. I was afraid to make eye contact with this man. I was young but he instilled fear with his voice.  In one quick motion the teen scrambled back to the cooler and grabbed a beer. He handed it to his father having to stretch his arm to be within reach. I couldn’t blame the young man because he didn’t want another hit on the head.

One day  as I walked to school in Boston, I was behind a young mother and her two young girls hardly more than four or five. The mother was in a hurry. Her sturdy fast paced steps, swinging arms, along with her grip on her handbag gave one the impression of someone on a mission. The kids were obviously having trouble keeping up. The woman kept urging them to walk faster and she increased her rate of speed. Her voice was loud and her words were curt.

Inevitably the youngest child slipped and fell on the concrete drawing blood to both knees. The mother was angry and started to scream at her youngest daughter. The crying child immediately clammed up while the older child stop attempting to help her sister to her feet. The three continued their walk with one change. The youngest child was limping and trailing behind. I had to make a turn and lost site of the three individuals. I won’t forget the intense look of the mother and her terse words spilling through her clenched teeth. No wonder the child just got to her feet and continued to move on.

I wonder at adults who are parents or work with kids. I hope they realize how much of an impact both good and bad, they have on  kids. The impressions  they leave are carved into the spirit in a good or detrimental way. Children are the helpless recipients of anger frustration, regret, and much more. They have no where to run and no escape. Living in fear for some kids is a normal state of affairs.

We put people in jail for simple infractions yet we allow serious harm to happen to kids before we  step in as a society. I will never understand this. At the sake of embarrassing parents, we should come  to the aid of families in need. Unless we find the root of problems there will be no remedy. If one requires an antibiotic but is only given cough medicine, the infection continues. Answers at most times are simple.

I know the voice has the power to crush, disintegrate, relieve, or bring comfort and love. The words are not as important as the tone, loudness tempo distinctness emphasis on words and expressions on the face of the person delivering the message. Perhaps we should think about the messages we are sending to our kids and to other people. Probably we never thought about the changes in our voices nor the facial changes and bodily changes expressed by our built up emotions.

After growing up with a multifaceted person I have learned how to  read most people. I get a sense of their mood. We all get angry but  allowing it to take over our minds is inexcusable. The next time we feel our fury rising,  we might think about the changes taking place in our own bodies. Take some deep breaths and count to one hundred if need be. It might help us to better control our own rage. It is  always within our power to change things. We simply need to be aware of how we affect others and the impact of our anger. Making happier and brighter days for our own families and those of others is crucial to everyone’s well-being.

“Anger is an acid that can do more harm to the vessel in which it is stored than to anything on which it is poured.”    Mark Twain

“Don’t hold to anger, hurt or pain. They steal your energy and keep you from love.”
Leo Buscaglia

“If you spend your time hoping someone will suffer the consequences for what they did to your heart, then you’re allowing them to hurt you a second time in your mind.”    Shannon Alder

“Your perspective on life comes from the cage you were held captive in.”    Shannon Alder

“Anger makes you smaller, while forgiveness forces you to grow beyond what you are.”    Cherie Carter Scott

“Before you can live a part of you has to die. You have to let go of what could have been, how you should have acted and what you wish you would have said differently. You have to accept that you can’t change the past experiences, opinions of others at that moment in time or outcomes from their choices or yours. When you finally recognize that truth then you will understand the true meaning of forgiveness of yourself and others. From this point you will finally be free.”    Shannon L. Alder

Make Thankfulness Routine

Gratitude“Throughout history wise men and women have encouraged us to feel grateful for what we have. Why? Very simply because gratitude makes us feel good.”   Richard Carlson, Ph.D

“We need to regularly stop and take stock; to sit down and determine within ourselves which things are worth valuing and which things are not; which risks are worth the cost and which are not. Even the most confusing or hurtful aspects of life can be made more tolerable by clear seeing and by choice.” Epictetus

“Do not indulge in dreams of having what you have not, but reckon up the chief of the blessings you do possess, and then thankfully remember how you would crave for them if they were not yours.” ~ Marcus Aurelius

As we review our lives since the beginning or even over the past year, we might think of the happy times, but I fear most of us dwell on those moments of pain. It seems to be human nature, to want to make all things perfect in our lives. No matter how wonderful the year might have been, we review what went wrong during the difficult times.

Told to do our best from the time we understood what that meant, programs us to strive for goals, attainment, wealth and achievement. This leaves us working hard, for those who dare to take up the challenge. We have become “A one” personalities so to speak. We find as much fault in ourselves, as we  find in others. It leaves us with feelings of insecurity, self doubt, distrust and a damaging notion of dissatisfaction.

The eager barrage of incentives, to keep working towards elusive dreams and ideas, overshadows reality, inner beauty and truth. We don’t have time to think about what is going correctly in our lives, because we are too busy with what we are trying to fix,  make better, or evolve into. I find it strange that our  inner feelings and nature, come in second, to our achieving acknowledgement from the world. Of course this world may consist of our boss, co-corkers, parents, spouse, siblings or any combination.

Leading a thoughtful, calm and gentle life is not enough for most of us. Somehow we must prove ourselves, make our mark on the world, or within our own circle. This defines us and proves our success. We should question how  we define success, and how does our success define us. Being a new year, I thought it appropriate to consider resolutions, and thoughts about life. Considering what we value may explain to us,  who we are by what we treasure.

I easily forget how much I have to be thankful for. I worry about the work I accomplish, the money I require to survive, the people who have lost my trust, the people who have hurt me or dismissed me time and again, and those who seem to be able to make so much more than I will ever be capable of earning. The envy and jealousy feelings creep in, when I believe I am as good as they are, so why do I strive while they coast. I loathe the health issues I deal with, and resent the good health of others. I ask myself why me.

I assume this sounds familiar on one level or another. Some of us let it sink in and fester, while others let it drift in, linger for a bit, and then we send it packing. In short time, we pick ourselves up and again, and step along the path of our journey. We  tell ourselves to work harder, give more time, and focus. We even give up our free time with friends and family, to accomplish the tasks we have set for ourselves. Our life gets busier and busier but it is okay. Now we don’t have time to review what we lack, when we have filled our lives with obstacles to overcome, and goals to reach. This appears to work, except for an unusually quiet moment, when we again review our state of mind, and find we have dropped even further into the well of despair.

There seems to be no answer. We have done all we can, and the dream is elusive and further away than ever. We have become so defeated, that we don’t recognize who we are any more. Family and friends seem to mean less to us, and as a matter of fact, we don’t have the time to understand them anymore.

Honestly, this year it is time to get back to the basics of your life. It is totally more relevant to recall what your treasures are, and how much they mean to you. As easy as it might be to say, I don’t care about this one or that one anymore, you would miss them if they  were gone from your life. People are our gifts. They are the irreplaceable items in our lives. They are not dispensable. Once we come to deduce their relevance, other ambitions we set and try to accomplish, pale in comparison.

Counting our blessings actually uplifts our emotional state. Just as over-thinking your dilemmas can induce anxiety, casting special relationships into the background of our lives reduces emotional well-being. He who is rich has the love of friends and family. Focus on that for the new year, and have faith you will be relaxed in your burdens. Love relieves pain. People experiencing hospital procedures always want someone they love nearby. Even people with Dementia, prefer to stay close by someone they have always trusted. Somehow love supersedes everything else.

If a person had to keep only one thing, his fortune, fame, youth, beauty, prowess, accomplishments, intelligence or people he loves, I would bet the love would always take  first place. We can all function without the former but we die inside without the later. People are downtrodden, even if they believe falsely that they are unloved. How strange to worry our whole lives about everything else, except what is vital to us all.

If we have love in our lives, then we already have much to be grateful for. Instead of thinking about the items we are lacking, count your blessings, by counting the people you love and care about. That should make all of us smile. During this year, vow to spend time with those you love. If you can’t do it in person, use the phone or computer or Skype or whatever. Promise yourself you will stop putting  people off in deference to things.

When we are feeling pain, it is people who push our clouds away. Have a fantastic new year full of enlightenment about what we should appreciate but have been taking for granted. Watch as your happiness is  guaranteed to soar. The more we come to know what is to be cherished,  the greater our increase of love, companionship, empathy tolerance,  and joy.  More attention to loved ones fills our hearts with love. The rest of our workload of striving towards outward goals, will be a piece of cake.

“It is impossible to feel grateful and depressed in the same moment.” ~   Naomi Williams

“Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues, but the parent of all the others.” ~ Cicero

“If we magnified blessings as much as we magnify disappointments, we would all be much happier.”      John Wooden

“It isn’t what you have in your pocket that makes you thankful, but what you have in your heart.”  Author Unknown

“Make it a habit to tell people thank you.  To express your appreciation,  sincerely and without the expectation of anything in return.  Truly appreciate those around you,  and you’ll soon find many others around you.  Truly appreciate life, and you’ll find that you have more of it.” ~ Ralph Marston

“Never let the things you want make you forget the things you have.” Unknown

“When life is sweet say thank you and celebrate. And when life is bitter say thank you and grow.” Unknown

“We often take for granted the very things that most deserve our gratitude.”   Cynthia Ozick

“We live in deeds, not years; in thoughts, not figures on a dial.  We should count time by heart-throbs.  He most lives who thinks most, feels the noblest, acts the best.” ~ Phillip James Bailey

Just Be Yourself

“Say NO to the demands of the world. Say YES to the longings of your own heart.”   Jonathon Lockwood

“Your work is not to drag the world kicking and screaming into a new awareness. Your job is to simply do your work…Sacredly, Secretly, and Silently…And those with ‘eyes to see and ears to hear’ will respond.”    Unknown

Continually attempting to please others, is likely the most difficult job we all work at constantly. All our boasts about  not caring if someone likes it or not, are just nonsense. Deep down we want to make others happy. All of us work at making the grade, and becoming number one, in the eyes of another. What I have found is that it becomes impossible, to be the number one for any length of time. As hard as we work at it, eventually it wears us down, and I am not even sure others are totally aware of the game we are playing. They are too busy playing their version of it.

Most likely it begins at childhood, when we compete against our siblings for attention. Some of us find it easier to be people pleaders, but we all do it to some degree, even if we don’t admit to it. If our parents like something special for dinner, then that is what we cook when they are coming over. We bask in our ability to please them, and we beam, when they compliment us. Of course we get a bit  rigid when we hear about their  pleasure at another siblings house. How petty of us we think, but the feelings creep in, or is it the threat of losing love.

Young kids depend on mom and dad, and so the ability to accept sibling rivals, is important. Maybe we never evolve out of that position. Instinctively we continue to strive to please.  This perhaps continues with our jobs and the boss. Technically the boss is also a provider for us, and important figure in our lives. Husbands and wives play another role, and without knowing it,  demand more of our attention.

We all like to satisfy, receive praise, and feel that we make a difference in the lives of others. I know it is probably impossible to be in first place, all the time. It is extremely difficult, to  maintain a level of denial, in order to cope with the pleasures of others. Simply stated, we can’t be the perfect child forever. Finding our own lives is relevant. We can’t be the need fulfilling spouse every second. Our own needs must be taken care of. We are never the perfect parent, sibling or friend. Those times when we fail, are the times we beat ourselves up, for not satisfying another.

Perhaps it is time to ask if it is so important to always gratify. Likely we have degrees of how much importance we place on this attitude. It is paramount to accept the fact, that we cannot always placate those we love. If we only see ourselves through the eyes of another, then we lose ourselves in their perception of us. How they view us is how we rate ourselves. Now we are under pressure to come through. It is far better to appreciate  who we are. Our version of self, is the most important measurement we can accept.

Most of us probably are not aware of the importance, another person places, on what we think about them. As much as we attempt to keep parents happy, our children are doing the same thing with us. Every time we produce a guilt ridden situation,  we have endorsed a “striving to please” job. It only leaves us distraught at our attempts to gratify. Perhaps parents are not placing such burdens on us. It may possibly be us, who desire to constantly gratify those we love.

I honestly believe that in the end, we are so beat down that we give up. This is sad, but sometimes a blessing. After coming to terms with the limits of our capacity, we begin to discover ourselves. We also realize that we start doing things for others out of love, real love, rather than to attain a false belief of love. Most likely parents are not forcing kids to please, and may not be aware of the power they hold over their children. Adult children might become aware, that their parents are also not theirs to control. Kids need to learn independence, and thankfulness for the favors parents bestow.

Once this is accomplished, we can live our lives in honesty, and in a more relaxed state. We stop striving to constantly delight, and begin paying more attention to needs and support. It perhaps also gives us time to aid others, outside our circle of family and friends. If we dwell constantly on what we must do for someone, in order to maintain a tenuous sense of position, it allots  little time, to helping another, out of charity.

I know there were many times in my life, that I did things out of duty. There was some love intertwined, but for the most part, it felt more like being compelled to do it. Maybe it was my own sense of duty, or maybe it was guilt put on my shoulders. Likely it was a bit of both. I guess it is a good thing when a person comes to the realization sooner, rather than later, because pressure is relieved and living begins.

We strive to be the perfect parents, or grandparents. Then we discover how effortlessly, another parent or  grandparent assists our child in a profound and important way. Accepting this is crucial, to our own peace of mind. We all want what is best for our kids and grandchildren. If we love them truly, then there is no problem in accepting and being grateful, for the support of others. Loving can mean allowing our most treasured gifts, the freedom to be liberated. Letting go is difficult, but upon release,  peace is acquired. We also might find the loved one returns often. There is a comforting revisit, due to the lessening of restrictions.

The more we hold on tightly to what we perceive as ours, the more they struggle for autonomy,  and to please us. We leave them in turmoil. The expectations others have for us, as well as the ones we place on others, can consume our lives. It is so strange to have the independence, and knowledge of the love of others, without strings attached. Love is so gentle, that it is without physical attributes, and thus can only be felt within the body and mind. It is impossible to enclose, or keep love confined to oneself. By allowing love the freedom to expand, it draws back to us and gives thanks.

Even at work, there can be many who deserve credit for their abilities. We are one of many on the job. In no way are we depleted by someone’s fullness. Mothers and wives can love sons and husbands, without jealousy. Sisters-in-Law and brothers-in-law can love each other without competing. Siblings can understand that their parents love can be divided many times without any loss of love to them. Friends can accept the differences between each other, and the needs each individual fulfills. Grandparents can give unconditional love, without envy. I for one comprehend that letting go of demands, and competition, brings serenity. The empty space left from the lack of worry, is filled with more love. Serenity is far better than constant striving to please others. Life won’t always make you happy, but living a meaningful life will bring you happiness.

Strive For Happiness“PEACE It does not mean to be in a place where there is no noise, trouble or hard work. It means to be in the midst of those things, and still be calm in your heart.” Unknown

“When we seek to discover the best in others, we somehow  bring out the best in ourselves.”    William Arthur Ward

“We often take for granted the very things that most deserve our gratitude.”     Cynthia Oziek

 

Rejection Is Complicated

Rejection is Complicated“Most fears of rejection rest on the desire for approval from other people. Don’t base your self-esteem on their opinions.”    Harvey Mackay

“The ultimate authority must always rest with the individual’s own reason and critical analysis.” Dalai Lama

“All religions try to benefit people, with the same basic message of the need for love and compassion, for justice and honesty, for contentment.”    Dalai Lama

“Logically, harmony must come from the heart… Harmony very much based on trust. As soon as use force, creates fear. Fear and trust cannot go together.”    Dalai Lama

When we think about rejection, we recall friendships and boyfriends and girlfriends. Upon our loss of any kind, we review what we did and said and how others interacted with us. Many times we are left with feelings of guilt, remorse and we become determined to refrain from repeating what we perceive as the mistakes. How guilty we make ourselves believe. Even when others hurt us we somehow manage to turn it around and blame ourselves for the agonizing results.

Understanding the reasons for being rejected by anybody for any reasons is paramount to comprehending the complications of such situations. As early as childhood we face rejection from parents. Of course most parents love their kids but forms of discipline, and pain endured by parents who are attempting to avoid their own hurts get in the way of clear thinking. The result is rejection for minutes hours or days.

Children tend to be quick at rebounds and impulsive in their retorts and actions. It likely gets just about all of them in trouble with one parent or another. I suppose it takes tremendous thought on the parents part to understand the behind the scene reasons for such outbursts. A child who actually may want a parents’ love may forcefully reject the parent. Perhaps it gives the child control and probably the child wants to feel the parents love swiftly capturing him or her and sweeping them into their loving arms.

Of course a tired, weary stress ridden parent is unaware of the child’s hidden agenda and may carelessly misunderstand the behavior and resort to punishments and crying. Likely we have all been there. Viewing the situation from outside the circle allows one to notice that as upset as the parent is, the  child is more deeply affected. In this case one would say, the parent never meant to reject the child. The messages were not clear. The child might think, mom or  dad doesn’t love me, or I must do and behave in certain ways in order to keep their love. Love becomes conditional. Kids will accept the terms because love is so important to them and rejection is so horrible.

Parents likely assume the punishment worked but at times it has simply kept peace and control but perhaps not remedied the situation. Discussion brings understanding and enlightenment to a situation. The problem with discourse is sometimes we don’t have the time or the energy left after such an upsetting ordeal. Recognizing the signs of distress in kids helps to alleviate pain before it mounts. Realizing our own need for downtime and relief is also vital if we want to help ourselves in order to support our kids.

Dismissal from friends perhaps is the result of jealousy and envy. If one worries about weight, yet their friend is thin, it certainly can result in a crisis situation. Whenever we feel less of a person, in order to soothe ourselves we attempt to drag another down. We just can’t fathom our own worth. Making a friend believe they are not so great kind of keeps them under control. We don’t think about their hidden insecurities. At the moment we are concerned with our own.

Boyfriends who are jealous attempt to keep all other suitors away. In this way they confine their prize in order to keep it secure. None of us stop to think that such a manner of acting doesn’t work. At some future time perhaps our spouse will wander or attempt to leave. When the ensuing rage starts,  the results are seen in fights and sometimes death of one spouse at the hands of another. If we could sense or grasp the pain we all feel from rejection, we might figure out the power and deep pain we share deep inside. When we have love we fear losing love. Without love we search for any kind. Love does make the world go around.

Friendships thrive on sameness, compatibility and sharing of similar tasks and likes. New arrivals are not always welcome because it changes the mixtures’ texture. New friends who are added can rearrange things, cause stress and havoc and bring about jealousy and vulnerability. We might deny this or choose to ignore it but perhaps we do ignore our sensitivities too much. By accepting them and grasping them, we might lighten the anxiety.

Some people have a need to flirt with others when out with their significant other. Likely it is their insecurity that brings about the flirting. They need to feel wanted and desired by many so that they are built up enough to believe they would never lose the one they are with. After all they think, I am desired by others. I wonder sometimes at how much love we are lacking in our lives. If we love ourselves we can find love in our world. Real love is not mean, or unkind. It doesn’t hurt, cause  pain or brag. It isn’t boastful nor demanding. Love is gentle enduring and unconditional. It is free and returns of its’ own free will. It is never contained or hidden.

Siblings resent each other at times and perhaps by noticing the competition that started from childhood,  we can understand why sibling jealousy is prevalent. Siblings might have discovered at an early age that they are vying for their parents approval and acceptance as well as their love. Parental love might come at the price of a rejected sibling. The love lost between siblings is sad. So many devote their lives to avoiding each other or resenting the company of each other. The reality is they miss what they yearn for. they would cherish the love from each other but don’t know how to go about rekindling it and rediscovering the love they felt and had.

Perhaps the rejections are not always real. Kids push parents away when they want them the most. Parents walk away from kids when they are so hurt yet they love their kids so much. Parent and child are wounded. Spouses hurt each other with mistrust and doubt. As much as they want each other to make the first move and reach across the table with a loving hand, they become immobilized in their fear of rejection. In a sense we label the weaker person as the one who needs and wants the love. We will pretend we don’t care or need the love rather than admit our desire for it.

The significance of love and what love means is genuinely beyond words. Even animals choose love over food and warmth.  Humans have a necessity for love and we all hate to admit that need. All of us are connected by the universal truth of love making the world go around. We are so good at rejecting each other. We desire to be needed more than to need. Our requirements are basically  the same so there is no shame when the object of our affection hurts us with their rejection.

Guilt never works. It is negative and brings us down further than we already are. Guilt will separate us rather than bring us together. Let go of the guilt.  Choose to absolve yourself of guilt feelings. Punishing yourself doesn’t solve the problem. We might think in terms of deserving the pain that guilt  brings. We don’t. So let it go and trust yourself to move to higher ground with a better attitude. It is about improving not about guilt. We want our kids to do better and not be dragged down. We want to do better  so we shouldn’t spiral downward. Mistakes are not made to be reviewed continually. They are lessons learned. Forward movement is part of growth.

Perhaps when we can admit how wonderful and beautiful love is we will come to deal with each other in a more loving manner. It isn’t about power, control or chaining our loves. It is about understanding, acceptance, freedom, compassion kindness empathy tolerance and especially living, laughing and loving. We, after all, are more spiritual than human. Trust your loving intuition. While your mind is calmly reasoning, allow your heart to open the door to more loving responses. We all hate rejection of any kind. Discover and learn from mistakes. treat them as stepping stones to a better you.

“We can reject everything else: religion, ideology, all received
wisdom. But we cannot escape the necessity of love and compassion….
This, then, is my true religion, my simple faith. In this sense, there is no need
for temple or church, for mosque or synagogue, no need for complicated
philosophy, doctrine or dogma. Our own heart, our own mind, is the temple.
The doctrine is compassion. Love for others and respect for their rights and
dignity, no matter who or what they are: ultimately these are all we need.
So long as we practice these in our daily lives, then no matter if we are
learned or unlearned, whether we believe in Buddha or God, or follow some
other religion or none at all, as long as we have compassion for others and
conduct ourselves with restraint out of a sense of responsibility, there is
no doubt we will be happy.”― Dalai Lama XIV

Displaying Weakness

Displaying Weakness“I have found the paradox, that if you love until it hurts, there can be no more hurt, only more love.”    Mother Teresa

“Life is strong and fragile. It’s a paradox… It’s both things, like quantum physics: It’s a particle and a wave at the same time. It all exists all together.” Joan Jett

“Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and  reflect.” Mark Twain

I will hurt inside, cry later in the privacy of my home, laugh at the absurdity, and never show my sensitivity to those who are deliberately attempting to bring me pain. When I release my hurt and agonize alone, I actually feel the vulnerability dissipate and the strength replace the anguish. I truly stand taller and although the ache is still within, the knowledge of my power to overcome such pain is a relief.

Sometimes I wonder if the person or people who hurt me are aware of what they did. Perhaps they don’t always intend to bring  judgement and pain but when they assume they comprehend another person, they begin tossing out the insults to tame and keep someone else in line. In the process they mentally diminish the person they focus on. Most likely they may not have meant to perpetrate such action so profoundly, and in such a disturbing and crushing manner.

Probably we have all been at the receiving end of such interactions. We likely have all been ostracized from groups or discussions for one reason or another. Let’s face it, if you don;t agree with the majority simply bowing out of the group is the best answer, if you want to save your dignity and or sensitivity. Some people don’t like to listen to another idea that is different from theirs.

Sometimes those who get hurt are the first ones to venture into another discussion at a later time in order to build their own self-esteem  and confidence. They are ready for the battle and equipped to demolish the opposing rivals. This of course leads to more suffering and a false sense of a gain in prestige. Whenever we make a point at the expense of another we are not aiding anyone including ourselves. If we want collaboration and cooperation which leads to peace, we must think of other ways to ease our hurt egos and sensitive spirits.

When we speak harshly to our children we crush their spirits. Even when they are doing something wrong,  it does not ever give us the right to smash their frail egos and sensitive natures. When a child lives  with harshness they learn to harden their shells. In the process their flames of empathy and kindness dim and eventually go out. I ponder the reasons we have for inflicting pain in order to display a false sense of being in control.

Perhaps it begins with the parental choice of domination and discipline. Although most parents admit they love their kids unconditionally, actions speak louder than words. If the parents verbal onslaught and physical aggression reduces the child’s control and confidence then it will also reduce the child’s sense of being loved. That is a harsh but true accusation. Reality is never pretty but we all grow from facing truth.

I reflect on the notion that the seeds for bullying begin from such tactics. Just like people who are wounded at a gathering of any kind including workplaces, feel the need to attack and get back their honor and self-respect, so to does a child require a boost in control of their lives by inflicting pain on a lesser individual. When we are all attempting  to find fault and blame  we might search and find our answers within our own actions.

Nobody likes a put down and everyone wants respect. It is so simple a theory. Kids are no exception. The worst issue for kids is that they are crushed by the people they love the most. It certainly makes one think and rethink how they handle children. Even  teachers who find it necessary to blast a loud voice at kids for misbehaving, must also  reevaluate how they are teaching and what they are teaching.

If adults don’t like domination and jurisdiction then neither do kids. Of course many  times we can’t change the  way things are so we are left with how to deal with such incidences. The best but most difficult answer is to walk away. That is not always an option for most of us. The next option is to speak your mind clearly and distinctly and then hold your temper and malice when others share thoughts that  are demeaning and cutting to what you had to offer.

I for one admit that many times those of us who get swallowed up in a disagreement actually have followers  who are silent. There are others who won’t admit publicly, that they share  our thoughts. It doesn’t help us at the time of the disagreement but it gives one food for thought. People never want to fight with the more powerful or  louder opponent. Nobody desires confrontation. Silence doesn’t always mean agreement. It simply means one recognizes the control within the situation and refuses to add fuel to the blaze.

Now I can leave a disagreement knowing that even if I have publicly lost the argument, I don’t have to wallow in my own self-pity. Losing doesn’t result in a change in opinion or a lowering of my self-esteem. As a matter of fact, there are times when I believe it gives honor to me and anyone who brings food for thought to the table. I guess we must get over the strong affront from others who many times are in a foul mood or pushing  an alternate agenda. Those in power are always feeling threatened by others who differ from them. Having this knowledge gives us courage to speak up regardless of the abuse we may acquire. Truth and reality gives all of us a fresh breath of air and sunshine.

Children thrive better when disciplined with love consistency and meaningful consequences. It is also  wise to listen to a child’s reasons for outbursts and physical behavior. It doesn’t mean we approve of  the behavior just because we aloud them to speak. At times it enlightens us to a problem we may not have noticed or were not aware of. Knowledge always brings more power and understanding to any situation. You don’t want to be the parent who is basically saying, “I am hitting you for hitting another. I don’t want you hitting now but when yo are grown feel free to hit your kids.”

Perhaps by placing ourselves in an others shoes we might see the situation through their eyes and come to understand the paradoxical problem we have when we get hurt and then hurt others. Unless we nurture and inspire more empathy we will raise warring, rather than caring people.

“Nobody can hurt me without my permission.”  Mohandas Gandi

   “Anyone can sympathize with the sufferings of a friend, but it requires a very fine nature to sympathize with a friend’s success. ” Oscar Wilde

“To be angry is to let others’ mistakes punish yourself. ”  Master Cheng Yen

“Try not to become a man of success, but rather to become a man of value. He is considered successful in our day who gets more out of life than he puts in. But a man of value will give more than he receives.”  Albert Einstein

“Only he who attempts the absurd is capable of achieving the impossible.”  Miguel Unamuno

“Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power.”     Abraham Lincoln

“We find comfort among those who agree with us, and growth among those who don’t.” Frank A. Clark

“The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, and wiser people so full of doubts.” Bertrand Russell

Knowledge is proud she knows so much; wisdom is humble that she knows no more.” William Cowper