I feel so many emotions throughout the day. I’m on a personal mission to feel grateful far more than I feel anything else. It’s only day two on this journey but just bringing awareness to my thoughts and feelings has had a major impact. I have caught myself going to that place that leads me somewhere dark. I immediately switch my focus to something that makes me feel happy and hopeful. It’s easy to let darkness and negativity in. It’s like a fog that works its way into the cracks until I am surrounded and cannot find my way out. It comes at me from all sides until slowly I remove myself from its reach. Sometimes that means staying away from people and television and anything else that tries to suck me in on a regular basis. What is the secret to happiness? I do believe its gratitude. Not only does it keep my heart and mind in a loving place but it also gives me the motivation to continue my mission to make this world a better, more compassionate, kinder place. What are you feeling grateful for tonight? I’d love to hear about it. Let’s share more of that.
I walk a minimum of 5 miles a day. On Thursday I walked ten. I love to be outside and feel the sun on my back and the wind in my face. A year ago, I suffered from anxiety and depression to the point I thought I was going to break. I thought the only way to escape it would be to find a way out of my skin. I felt trapped and helpless and the light at the end of the tunnel grew extremely dim. One day I made the decision that I had to break free from the prison I had created for myself. I couldn’t live that way anymore because it didn’t feel like living at all. Walking offered a new hope, a calm that I had been running after for quite some time. Today a neighbor I had never met before stopped me to discuss the opinion he had of my yard. He didn’t stop to to say hello or even to tell me to have a nice day. That is what the world has become these days.
This post is a reminder to everyone who takes the time to read it. You only see the 5 to 10 miles I walk in my shoes each day. What you don’t see are the miles that wear me down as I fight and struggle to be happy in a world I don’t even feel is where I belong.
Life is short.
Mind your own damn business.
Smile at someone.
Don’t judge others shoes or think you have any clue about the path that others walk. You only know what you see and looks can be quite deceiving. Be a nice person and offer someone hope and keep your opinions to yourself.
The world needs more compassion and kindness and less criticism and resistance.
More love and less arguments.
More happiness and gratitude and less bitching.
More smiles and less scowls.
More hope and less despair.
Be the light in someone else’s tunnel.
The world needs you now more than ever.
I need you.
Be the light in someone else’s darkness.
Be the difference.
Tough love. I’ve been raised with it and now I practice it on my own kids. I can’t help but ask myself, where do we draw the line? When do we reach the perfect amount of tough? I see tough all around me. Tough words, tougher actions and a very deep part of me quietly longs for gentleness. I’m tired of tough. Its exhausting trying to stay tough in a world that is already tough enough. We have an excess of toughness. We are fighters of things, everything. I don’t want to be tough anymore. Sometimes I forget that I don’t have to follow the rules. I can make my own. But how can I learn to soften when I spent years trying to toughen up? My intention and word for the month is soften. Time to soften that tense spot in the middle of my forehead. Time to soften my voice, my posture, my words, my thoughts, my heart. I’m done with tough for a while. I don’t want to beat people up, I want to be a soft place to fall. And you know what? I need the same as well. I don’t need people to tell me what I need to hear, I need support, compassion, understanding and love. I need someone to look past my flaws and mistakes and love me the way I am. I need someone to build me up not tear me down. Don’t we all need more of that? Being tough encourages tough so maybe the opposite is true as well. We are out of balance and it is time to tip the scale back in the other direction. We live in a place of extremes and I am desperately seeking real estate someplace in between.
From the time we are born, our parents tell us how special we are. We throw tantrums until we get what we want and then we grow into adults. Somewhere along the way, we missed the part where the world doesn’t accommodate us anymore after a certain age. We cannot special order the world, people, our president, or an outcome the way we can special order eggs at a favorite, local restaurant. The truth is, we are all special in our way but not so special that what we want holds more value than what someone else may want. The world does not owe you or anyone else a single thing. As an adult, we must learn to adapt to whatever is and to find a way to survive in situations that make us uncomfortable. We don’t get a fuzzy blanket wrapped around us every time we are cold and a lollipop each time we bump an elbow on the same corner of the wall. We don’t have the right to make everyone else’s life miserable because things in our own life are in disarray. We have to leave the tantrums behind because the result of this ridiculous behavior is stealing any chance for peace for people just trying to make ends meet while wanting desperately to live a happy, decent life. Just my two cents. I know life is hard but all the lollipops have been handed out. You have to learn to do this without a reward.
Today I knelt down and prayed for some peace. I’ve been living my life all wrong and what better time to start over than this season of lent. I have wasted precious prayers on speeding life up. When my kids were little I wanted them to grow out of certain phases faster. When the day is difficult, I want the week to speed ahead to Friday. When the year is filled with hard and heart broken, I want to jump ahead to the next one leaving the difficult one behind. I rush the moments that I will never get back. Even now, I want the next 8 days to fast forward so I will be sitting on a plane on my way to California for spring break. The truth is we don’t have a special button that will move us through time at our own will. This isn’t our plan. It never was. I have come to the realization that there are mountains we all have to climb. Things we must overcome to lead us to the person we are meant to be. There are no shortcuts, no passes on pain or hard times. We have to learn to find peace in our skin as our hearts experience the unthinkable or our pulse races to a dangerously high pace. More than ever, those are the moments we must strive to find faith and comfort knowing the moment won’t last and a new one is just around the corner waiting for us to arrive. We have to stop fighting and surrender to what is. How do we sit calmly in a place that makes us feel so uncomfortable? How do we stop fighting what is and just relax and let it be? What does it take? Faith? Hope? Confidence?
The next forty days I am going to pray that I find peace in my uncomfortable moments. I pray that I find a way to embrace each and every day regardless of the circumstances. I don’t want to speed the moments up and sit in regret as I look back and wish I enjoyed them more. Every day is precious and each one holds challenges and blessings. Rather than wanting to change my life, I am seeking a way to see it in a new way that will help me experience less of the anxiety and fear that rob me of my peace and the intention to embrace more joy and hope. Perception is the difference in a good and bad day…a good and bad life. Today, I pray for a new perspective on my own life and that even on the darkest days, I will find beauty. Life is too short to miss or rush a single moment. Today I make it my intention to slow down and focus on the things that really matter. I pray for a calm in this storm that is raging inside of me and a renewed hope and faith that I am not alone. I pray for peace inside of myself and throughout the world.
Friday is like a much needed exhale after holding my breath most of the week. It is a reminder that we need to find a way to let the weight of the world go and reunite with our sense of peace. Life is so serious that sometimes we almost forget to nurture our playful side. Remember those days when you couldn’t wait to throw your backpack down and run outside and play? We all need play to survive the serious demands that tug at us from every angle. We need to excuse ourselves from the many roles we play on a daily basis and remember who we really are underneath the various facades. Here’s hoping you find peace in your own exhale today and that you reconnect with the little version of you who just wants to go outside and play.
How awesome is that we are here to celebrate living another day? We were given another beautiful chance to make this world a kinder and gentler place. What will we do with this precious opportunity?
If you can make someone happy today, I urge you to to do it! Anyone can create havoc and discord but it takes a REAL leader, a true warrior to create a place of love and peace. Peace be with each and everyone of you. Go out and shine today! Make peace your intention and be the change to HEAL the world. Be FOR something, anything. Start there. I’m for kindness, cohesiveness, civility, love.