A Sad Day

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I am a sensitive soul. I don’t feel good around conflict and violence actually makes me feel sick inside. I am heartbroken over what I see around me. Yes, I know there is good in the world, there are random acts of kindness and goodness that move me beyond words but there is also a darkness. People are cold hearted. They are cruel and hurtful and worst of all hateful. They can destroy people with their words and actions and never even feel a ping of remorse. It starts in subtle ways, the disrespect and damage we do to others and before we know it we have someone beheading another on the internet for everyone to see. How does one become so cold and cruel. How does one validate their feelings enough to destroy others around them. The pain in my heart when I witness such acts is more than I can bear. There is no excuse to mistreat anyone ever, not one reason good enough to destroy or demean another human being. And the fact that some grow cold enough to take the life of another is something I will never understand. Violence is bad. It is like a wildfire that spreads from person to person. Behavior that should be appalling is now becoming part of everyday life. Take a look at yourself. Find a way to open your heart and treat others with kindness and respect. We are all human beings and each and every one of us deserves the respect of those around us. If your heart has grown hateful and hard remember we are teaching those same behaviors to the people who are watching. I cannot imagine being a mother or a friend of someone who is publicly beheaded for the world to see. How can someone’s anger and emotion and hatred become so great that he not only destroys one life but damages all the lives connected to that person as well. This has got to stop. People have got to get a handle on acting out. This need for revenge is a sickness beyond repair. Who do we think we are as a people that we think we have the right to make someone pay for our own demons who rule our minds? There are no words for this lack of humanity. There is a saying that goes ” I see humans but no humanity”. Don’t be part of that movement. You have to be stronger and better than your lack of self control and your impulse to act out in anger. My perfect world is a world of peace and respect. A place where violence does not live freely among people who know the difference from right and wrong. We do not have the right to strike out against others. It says much less about the victim and much about the perpetrator. Innocent people get hurt everyday, their lives destroyed one disrespectful word and action at a time. I hope I can get the image of that video out of my head. I am truly sick. Remember, that type of behavior does not happen over night. It builds one day at a time until we are so out of control it becomes second nature to take the life of another. I pray for people to be influenced more by their hearts and compassion and less by anger and hatred.

Is Your Mind Friend or Foe?

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I saw this quote on Facebook today. I read it, stopped what I was doing, focused and read it again. As I read the words I realized how true this really is. I remember so many times I was walking into something I felt would be difficult. Actually I knew it would be awful, but the way my mind blew everything out of proportion, the thinking part was actually worse than anything else. Our mind can be our best friend or our worst enemy. It can trick us and twist things and make a mountain out of a tiny mole hill. I wish I had an answer on how to stop it from happening. I really don’t think you can. Maybe, just recognizing and being aware that this happens will at least be enough to calm yourself enough to have the courage to get through anything that stands in your way. There are some things we just have to get through. No-one can do it for us. We have to find the confidence and the faith and the perseverance to crash right through the very thing we would rather avoid. These are the moments that define us and change who we are. There is no way around them and we can’t rush the journey. All we can do is be patient and breathe. It will pass like everything else and we may find out just how strong we really are as we finally get beyond what has been holding us back and in the end we may laugh as we discover the whole time, our own mind was the biggest obstacle of all.

Checking My Mirrors

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Isn’t it amazing that every single thing we do affects the people around us? Every word, every post, every decision, every action influences the people that cross our path. My brother came for a visit recently and he asked me this question, “Kim, why do you keep looking in your rear view mirror and worrying about the guy behind you?”

How could I ever make him understand that it’s so much more than a driving thing for me? I am always aware of others all around me. I know all too well that the words I use, the tone of my voice, the way I act directly influences everyone in my life. I have mirrors all around me and I am constantly paying attention to what I see in them. Does that always improve my behavior? Not likely, but the fact that I have made that connection gives me hope for positive change in the future.

We are so unaware of the power we possess. Our words, our voice, everything we decide to do can create a reaction in somebody else. Have you noticed how people react to you? Yes, that tells you something about them but it can also teach you a great deal about yourself. Does the room get a little bit lighter when you walk in or do things feel tense? What is it you feel when you are around others? If you aren’t noticing much of anything then you’re just not paying enough attention.

I’ve learned to find some balance with this silly little reflection of mine. If I focus too much on everything I do I can become almost paranoid, but the opposite leads straight down the road of selfish behavior. Be aware, pay attention and choose your words and actions carefully. The only thing we really have any control over is our own behavior. Remember, it’s not just about you. We are connected, like it or not.

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A New Perspective on The Fault In Our Stars

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So I finally went to the movies to see The Fault in Our Stars. I was wondering how the movie would compare to the book and I was not disappointed. I swore walking in and taking my seat that I would not shed a single tear. That did not exactly turn out to be the case.     
We all want to be remembered. We all want to feel important enough to leave a  mark on this great big world. We want to know at the end of our life that our existence had meaning and that when we take our final encore at the end of our lives people will stand up and cheer as the curtain drops.

I think most people are defined by something. It may be a job or the number of friends they keep. They may be defined by what they do or dont accomplish. I hope to think it is the little things that sometimes go unnoticed that really define whether we led an important life. The way we live and the way we act changes and influences people around us. Do you make people bitter or do you make people better? For every act of kindness and compassion and encouragement you extend to another gets passed on to yet another and another. It is these subtle actions that slowly and steadily lead to a better and kinder world. They not remember your name and they may not remember your face but you will become a beautiful catalyst in the collective face of kindness.

Any way you look at it, it is hard to think about our own death. It is hard not to examine the years and the moments and fear we wasted our own precious time. In a busy world filled with distracting technology, it is not even out of the question to wonder if the loss of our human presence will even be noticed. Even while we are alive we feel isolated and forgotten. It is so important to do the the little things that matter while we are fortunate to have people here physically in our lives. A phone call, or a moment of your time will mean so much more than your attention and presence at the side of a casket. They won’t feel the touch of your hand then and they won’t feel you standing beside them. That is something we all need a great deal of while we are still alive.

Let this be a gentle reminder to give the most important gift you can to those around you….your time. People know how busy life is so when you take time out of your busy life just for them, that alone will make them feel important and believe they matter. Be kind to the people around you. Love them and offer your attention and you will watch them blossom before your eyes.

Life is tragic any way you look at it. Our stories begin and end the same way. Its what we do in between that makes all the difference. Be present each and every day. Slow down and enjoy the moments. Because in the end, it is not the big things at all, but rather the little ones, that really matter