Knowing where you came from … where your roots were planted … where they were originally allowed to grow … allows you to go farther than those without an understanding of their roots.
Your language, traditions and core beliefs originated from those roots. While those roots may not be perfect, from there you grow your own roots. Be proud of those roots … they are yours.
Keep your own roots firmly and deeply planted, even while others try to dig them up and pull them out. Those that attempt to do so, only do so out of their own weakness, their own evil, their own rotten roots.
Be proud of the knowledge that you possess as a result of those roots, whether that knowledge is good or bad. Learn from that knowledge and apply that knowledge to the growing of your own roots. The roots that your family will grow from.
Be kind to those roots, protect them and defend them. It is from those roots that a successful life’s journey is dependent upon.
“It’s your outlook on life that counts. If you take yourself lightly and don’t take yourself too seriously, pretty soon you can find the humor in our everyday lives. And sometimes it can be a lifesaver.” – Betty White
“Don’t Take Yourself Too Seriously” – this is a quote heard often with the implication that we put too much pressure on ourselves, we don’t laugh at ourselves, we don’t enjoy life to the fullest.
What happens when we don’t take ourselves seriously, and we end up in a situation that is sucking the life out of us? When we become codependent on satisfying someone else? When we have succumbed to the master who is treating us like dirt? Allowing yourself to be treated like a doormat is not taking yourself seriously.
At what point do we look at ourselves and take us seriously? We are human, and we deserve to be treated with respect and dignity – by ourself and by others. How do we pull ourselves out of the trenches in order that we can recognize our value and live life?
Life experiences have taught me that we begin by Admitting we are powerless over the situation that has us strapped down. Pour Faith into a Higher Power; that this Power will guide us if we allow it.
When you have Faith, then you begin to Believe …… in yourself, in your spirit, your faith, and your value. Believe that your Higher Power loves you unconditionally, in the same way that you should love yourself.
As you begin to Believe in yourself, your Trust in yourself will become a reality. Trust, also, that your Higher Power will be there to guide you and show you the way.
Cultivate relationships with people that understand your situation, and provide you with support, guidance and the tools that you need. Relationships that serve you according to your needs will give you strength as you learn to Believe in yourself. These relationships may be very different than relationships with a “cheerleader” who carry you along with fluff and kind words.
Each of us was given the gift of life to celebrate. It is our own responsibility to take ourselves seriously to ensure that we are treated with respect and dignity; and when we do, we will find love and laughter in our own lives and learn not to take life too seriously.
Have you ever taken time to draw a picture of the way something looked in the past, and then drawn a picture of the same event from today’s perspective? Probably not, but if you did how clear would that original picture be? Is there color in it? Are there smiles or tears, anger or love, frustration or contentment?
Does your picture of past relationships with loved ones that have passed on include smiles or sadness? How about that great friendship that you once had that is no longer part of our life, what would that picture look like? Would that person be included in a picture of your future? Do you focus too much of your energy on desiring those past relationships, those past pictures. Is the relationship that you reflect on an old picture. Perhaps past relationships no longer exist because they no longer fulfill your current or future needs. Does it belong in your future? Or does it belong in your past?
What if you drew a picture of the relationships that are currently in your life? Who would be in that picture? What emotions would exist in that picture? What would you be doing? Where would you be? Where would you be going?
How about the future relationships that you want to be part of your life? Are you able to draw a picture of those? If you could draw a picture of the future relationships, what would it look like? What needs would it fulfill? What types of experiences would you be experiencing? Are those experiences the same as the experiences that you already have had? Or are they different? If you could draw the picture of your future, how would it differ from your past, or your present?
Drawing a picture of a future relationship is like creating something that never existed before. It’s like a new masterpiece. Something that you never experienced before. Something that you never felt before. Creating this new masterpiece requires taking some risk. Without risk there is no growth. Without growth, how can life be fulfilled?
What if this new relationship that you seek is with YOU? Yes You! Can you draw a picture of your future self? What would that picture look like? Is it a picture that you believe so strongly in that you would share with others? Drawing a future picture of yourself takes great courage. Sharing it takes even greater courage. What if you don’t live up to this picture? What if it didn’t come true? Wouldn’t that make you a looser? Perhaps even a failure? Holy crapper – don’t go there!
Growth of any kind requires vision. We would never build a new home or office building without blueprinting it first. That would be plain foolish. After all, how would we know what the future building would look like if we didn’t have a blueprint, if we didn’t have plans. In some cases we even go as far as having an architectural model developed so we can visually see how that building is going to look when we are done. We would be foolish to start the building process without the plans being finalized and ‘stamped’ by an engineer.
Yet so many of us just wander through life without a blueprint, without plans and without a picture of our future self. If designing your future was as simple as drawing a picture – what would that picture look like?
The beauty of drawing a picture of your own future, is that your future is continually changing. Unlike a building, your life is full of life, if you choose for it to be. When you are living a life that is alive you are able to continuously revamp your picture. You can add to it, remove from it, highlight certain parts of it and change the colors. This is the beauty of drawing a picture of your future self. Don’t wait for someone else to draw the picture for you. Pick up the pencil in your own hand and begin drawing a life that is a one of a kind masterpiece.
Practice makes perfect – now there’s a saying that has been drilled over and over into everyone’s head over the years!
The problem is that ‘perfect’ isn’t possible. To achieve perfection in anything would in fact stop progress.
So, why do we practice to be perfect? Why do you want to stop growth? Why is there this goal to stop progress? If perfect isn’t possible then aren’t you practicing to achieve something that is not achievable?
We do not make something perfect by practicing the same thing over and over and over. Practicing should be an attempt to make something better, and better, and better, not make it perfect. If your goal is to be perfect, then go ahead and keep practicing, maybe you will get there. Wherever there is!
But if you want to live and to grow then you gotta make new. You need to view things with the mindset of impermanence.
What the heck is impermanence – was what I silently asked myself the fist time I heard the word. I didn’t want to seem naive and ask for the definition. That would be like asking for directions to get somewhere. A real man never does that! Especially when it’s your daughter using this fancy word! So I did what every brave man and father now does – I Googled it!
Turns out impermanence is in fact a word. Who knew! And it’s a good word. No wonder I didn’t know what it meant!
Impermanence is one of the essential doctrines and a part of three marks of existence in Buddhism. I have never purposely studied or practiced Buddhism. I have no idea yet what the three marks are. But thank you Google and Wikipedia for helping me define impermanence!
Impermanence, according to Wikipedia, is the belief that all things, whether material or mental, are compounded in a constant or continuous change of condition. All things are subject to growth, decline and destruction. All physical and mental events, state’s Buddhism, come into being and dissolving. Human life itself is in a constant state of change. As are our relationships with others, and with ourselves. Everything we possess or own. Our belongings and our space. All things in the universe are in a constant state of change. Makes sense, kind of like the Big Bang Theory!
Enlightenment comes when we realize that what appears to be permanent really is in a continual state of change.
Enlightenment comes when we realize that no matter how hard we practice to be perfect, we never are. That’s because each of our definitions of perfection is in a constant state of change. Even our relationship with perfection is in a constant state of impermanence. Everything is impermanent, even permanence.
Some of us spend our lives practicing to be perfect at something. And because we are never able to reach that level of perfection, we are continuously letting ourselves down. What failures we are for not being perfect!
Get over it! Humans were never created to be perfect. We were created to be unique. And through that uniqueness we are allowed to be impermanent.
The other truth, or enlightenment, is that by practicing to be perfect does not make new. It just attempts to perfect something that already exists and is likely deteriorating.
To continually attempt to make something that is impermanent perfect, is like wearing your old high school football jersey to your grandson’s prom. The jersey likely no longer fits. The numbers are falling off. And the emblem on the front that you idolized in high school likely isn’t in the same condition as it was thirty or forty years ago! No matter how many times you wear that jersey, and relive that big play in your senior year of high school, it likely still isn’t exactly how it was drawn in Coach Rink’s playbook. The play you practiced over and over to make perfect, after all these years, still isn’t perfect.
If your goal is to be perfect, then keep practicing, maybe you will get that touchdown yet! Even though the game is long over.
If you want to live though, well then you gotta make new! You gotta move ahead with your own unique imperfect self. Take pride and ownership in the creation of that special imperfection you call you.
Because if you’re not moving ahead, Buddha says you are declining and self destructing. And that picture ain’t so pretty!
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Can you recall an experience in your life when an individual, or a group of individuals like politicians, have either received allot of money or gain the control of others money. More money than they have ever been used to being in control of.
Does the new found control of this money seem to put them out of control. Do they loose control.
What happens when the money is gone and the wheels fall off?
Spending the money with no control or direction on how it may affect their’s or your well being. Or your knowledge. Without control the money is quickly depleted. All the shiny pretty stuff no longer has meaning. The spending was just a crutch. And when the money is gone the crutch is ripped away. The individual or individuals fall hard.
If it was a group of people they may fall even harder and start blaming each other. They fight and they argue. They have a negative affect on their families and their communities. Lawyers soon get involved so that each person can prove that the other is wrong. The lawyers take what’s left of the money, and maybe even more.
The individuals end up losing more than the money. They have lost a part of their well being. Their health deteriorates. Their friendships and loved ones disappear. Whether the lawyers prove them right or not the reality is they have likely lost more than the money could buy.
The most important asset of all, time, has slipped past them like a thief has broken in when they weren’t paying attention and took it away from them. Time can never be repurchased.
Yet they focus their negative energy on the money that was lost. And then they call the money evil. Or the devil.
Some people say that money is the root of all evil. They say that if it weren’t for the money they would be happy. The reality is that money is money. It is a thing. When people give things life, without having a way to control it, the thing begins to control you.
How do you maintain control of things? By practicing awareness and measuring the impact that the thing has on your health and well-being. The well-being of your family and the wisdom that is gained through the benefit of having the money, or the thing. And how you impact the lives of others through your generosity. That’s how you maintain control. That’s how you keep ‘the thing’ from controlling ‘the you’.
When controlled and measured by its impact on areas of importance – the money will just be a thing. It’s impact will last indefinitely if utilized and controlled as a thing.
Money is not the devil – those who loose control of it are…
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If you are living your life exactly as planned then you’re probably pretty boring! In fact you’re probably a Chicken!
Ya I know you’re supposed to set goals and measure your progress and all that – but every once in a while you just have to stop being so darn boring – and live on the edge!
If your great passion in life is to live your life on a cautious path that will more or less just work out – does that get the most out of your life?
If you have never experienced failure does that mean your life has been a success? Aren’t failures and setbacks how we grow?
Don’t we learn to walk by falling down a bunch of times?
Wrapping ourselves in bubble wrap and tip toeing our way across the finish line – is that how we succeed in life?
As parents what are we teaching our children when we say ‘just go out there and have fun and you will get a beautiful participation ribbon no matter what the results are’! I’m all for doing stuff for the fun. In fact I believe we should try hard to only do things that we enjoy most of the time. But why do you need a participation ribbon for having fun? Isn’t having fun fun enough? Kind of seems like all we are doing is encouraging mediocrity in that formula. Are we teaching a lack of appreciation which results in a lack of understanding of the true meaning of Gratitude. Does it teach that the only way we can appreciate something is if someone gives us a ribbon. Doesn’t having a misunderstanding of the true meaning of Gratitude result in a life that is no fun. Always wanting more but never being Grateful for what you have achieved because you never got another ribbon. Does the ribbon attempt to fill the void that is left as a result of the lack of Gratitude for what is meaningful. The meaning of fun. The meaning of success.
If you are not applying yourself to your maximum God given talent. If you are not trying to excel at whatever you are Blessed with. Then that expresses a lack of Gratitude for the life that you have been given. If you aren’t truly Grateful for the life that you are given how can you possibly be grateful for things of less importance than your own life, or in other peoples lives. Or other people’s possessions. Things that are less important than your own life is pretty much everything else that evolves around your life. We should be encouraging Gratitude, not taking it away.
You are lying to yourself if you are not becoming the best possible you that you should be. Being the best you that you should be is what is expected from you when you were put on this earth. The initial expectation was never any less than that. Why would you allow that expectation to change?
Stop being a chicken and start experiencing new things. The first step is to make a commitment. Commit to something that you have never done before. Commit to something that someone else has done, or is doing, and you always wished that was you. Stop the excuses like ‘I don’t know enough about it’ or ‘I’m not good enough’ or ‘I can’t afford it’ or the worst excuse ever ‘I don’t have the time’. The unfortunate fact is you don’t have the time not to experience life to the fullest.
If you live each day with fear in it then at some point you end the day where you began the start of the day – back in bed with your covers pulled up over your head.
Life is supposed to be a continuous hurdle race. The steps you take after each hurdle prepares you for the next hurdle. The difference between life and a hurdle race is that the distance between each hurdle and the height of each hurdle varies, unlike in a race. And we are each running a different length of race.
Is it best to stop and whine or take self-pity on ourselves every time we knock down a hurdle. Does that give us the momentum to make it over the next hurdle? Of course not. It does the complete opposite. Instead you get stopped in your tracks and hurry back to the start line so you can watch the others finish with their arms in the air. And as you stand there you wonder why you didn’t get a ribbon.
This does not mean that you run through life in reckless abandonment. It means that you continuously challenging yourself to grow your well-being, your knowledge and your financial successes. Overcoming hurdles in each of these three areas of your life will reward you with a life that is a success. Success in the way that you measure it. The success that your life was meant to have.
Stop living your life exactly as planned. Stop flapping your wings and back peddling every time you come close to the next hurdle. Stop continually circling back to the start line because you were too chicken to jump the next hurdle.
Stop living your life exactly as planned.
And rest assured – your life will not be boring!
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