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Thursday, October 30, 2014

TWO HEADS ARE BETTER THAN ONE

"Coming together is a beginning. Keeping together is progress. Working together is success."
~Henry Ford~

Sometimes I want other people to see things the way that I see them. But maybe, in the long run, it's better if they don't. Because it's the variety of perspectives that makes for well-rounded living, and great ideas. And the more perspectives there are on any given situation, the better and the broader the view.

I welcome the way that other people see things.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

CLAIMING OUR CHOICES

"Life is the sum of all your choices."
~Albert Camus~

Our time is our own, though we may not think so. We are reckless with it and give it away with abandon. Perhaps we believe that if people demand things of us, that we owe them somehow. But we don't.
     Saying yes is a choice, and saying no is also a choice. These are boundary setting words, and we use them for self-protection and to define the tenor of our lives.
     So let's be sure to use them honestly, and straight-up, and not say yes when we mean no and no when we mean yes and leave it to others to dictate what's best for us and what is not. That's our job.

I say yes and no to things as it suits me, without apology, and without guilt or shame.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

THE STRENGTH WITHIN

"The greatest oak was once a little nut who held his ground."
~Author Unknown~

We have wells of strength within us. We are capable of endurance beyond our wildest dreams and seemingly impossible adaptability. There is more to us than we realize...
     And while there is plenty in life that we cannot control or affect or manipulate, where we do have power, it is deep and limitless and absolutely real.

I am stronger than I realize and have more power than I know.

Monday, October 27, 2014

STANDING MY GROUND

"They cannot take our self-respect if we do not give it to them."
~Mahatma Gandhi~

What other people do they are free to do and I don't have to let it rattle me. I can be ok in my own skin no matter what. I can be alive and well and honest and real even if everyone around me is not.

In any and every situation I can choose my position and establish my stance.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

WORKING WITH PLEASURE

"All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy."
~American Proverb~

Just because we are given responsibility does not mean that we have to become serious and severe. We can have a high-integrity work ethic and high-intensity work and still have fun at the same time.
     Learning to mix pleasure with our have-tos is a valuable practice, both for ourselves, and for those with whom we are engaged. It is the mix that's needed and the mix that's appreciated and the mix that brings enjoyment to the path.

     I am able to be productive and efficient but still maintain my lightness and my good humor and my lively sense of play.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

MUD PUDDLES

"Yet with the same light the moon goes on shining."
~Saigyo~

Sometimes our lives get stirred up like a mud puddle, and dirt and silt cover us thickly. Our world becomes cloudy and whirling and murky, and it feels like things will never be normal again.
     But in time, the water settles, and stillness and stasis are restored. And though the pieces may not end up exactly where they began, this is actually a good thing. We find ourselves able to start over again- fresh- and discover, to our delight and surprise, that we have been positively re-positioned by life.

I trust the process of transition in my life.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

CURIOSITY

"Be curious always!"
~Sudie Back~

Let's approach our lives with curiosity. Let's look around and see what we see and not impose some projected expectation all over the day to come. Let's allow for possibility and allow for beauty and allow for the unexpected. Let's welcome all of the things that we do not have the ability to foresee.

I am curious rather than judgmental. I do not insist upon knowing what I do not know.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

LESSONS OF THE FALL

"October poplars are flaming torches lighting the way to winter."
~N.S. Blair~

Fall has always been my favorite season. I love the crispness of it, and everything about the leaves. And though it is its own kind of ending, it is also anticipatory: preparing for winter, and generating mulch for the spring.

The cycle of seasons demonstrates our own need to let go, and be quiet, and renew ourselves.

Monday, October 20, 2014

SITUATIONAL INTERPRETATION

"Objectivity has about as much substance as the emperor's new clothes."
~ Connie Miller ~

Life is an interpretive affair. Though we all may be exposed to the identical information and situation, our experience of it- what we take away and process- is unique to us. And so, clarity and simplicity are more subjective than we might think. What is simple to one may be hugely and highly complex to another.
     In this way, everything is relative, and relational. Everything is skewed in the direction of our personal interpretation. Life, it turns out, is exactly the way that we interpret it to be.

I allow for everyone I encounter to have a unique perspective on the situation at hand.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

KEEPING ON

"The moment you turn a corner you see another straight stretch ahead and there comes some further challenge..."
~Oliver Wendel Holmes Jr~
 
Some days take more courage than others, and some days take more care. But they all pass in their turn and the thing for me to do is just keep on keeping on.

I stay the course, experience the experience, and ride the ride. Life carries me forward and supplies me whatever I need.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

THE OTHER SIDE OF THE MOUNTAIN

"The world is round and the place which may seem like the end may also be only the beginning."
~Ivy Baker Priest~
 
It can be blue skies on ones side of the mountain and rain on the other- at the same time and on the same day. And depending which side I'm on, I can see and believe that it's dark and stormy, and yet, only a few paces down the road, it's a whole different situation.

Life is a mix of clear skies and rain.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

THE ADVENTURE CYCLE

"No one realizes how beautiful it is to travel until he comes home and rests his head on his old, familiar pillow."
~Lin Yutang~
 
Every adventure begins and ends at home. We start from wherever we are and step forth into the broad world with our hopes and fears and expectations; our bag of clothing, and our best intentions. And whatever happens, happens, and we learn and grow and experience the ride.
     And then we come home when it's all over, to reflect, or to celebrate, or to lick our wounds. Every adventure is a circle, and every adventure is an opportunity to evolve.
 
I am grateful and aware of my comings and goings. I love to go away, but I also love to come back home when the adventure is complete.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

THE LIMITS OF CONTROL

"Freedom is not worth having if it does not connote the freedom to err."
~M. Gandhi~
 
We can only control people so far using guilt and shame tactics, and brandishing threats and fear. Eventually, they will always learn their own power and step up to claim it, or else walk away tired of the game.
     We do far better to give others their freedom, a bit of encouragement, and lots of love. Because the truth is that when it comes right down to it, they don't really need us in the end.
 
I stop trying to control people and let them be.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

LOVE IS...

"Love is the master key that opens the gates of happiness."
~Oliver Wendel Holmes~

Love is willingness- willingness to see what is and to be exactly who we are with no pretense and no fa├žade. Love is courage- courage to share our vulnerable selves with the world and talk about what's going with us on the inside. Love is awareness- awareness that we are alike each other, and that we have more in common than we think. And love is appreciation- appreciation for the fact that we are not alone, and that we can reach out to others and share our dreams with them.

Love is a mixture of willingness, courage, awareness, and appreciation, and I am all in!

Thursday, October 9, 2014

THE ROAD

"I travel not to go anywhere but to go. I travel for travel's sake. The great affair is to move."
~Robert Louis Stevenson~

Challenges and difficulties in life do not stick around forever. They come and they go, as do our joys. All we have to do is step forward, and then step again, and again.
     Our view will change, and the road will straighten, and bend, and curve, and rise up, and descend. It's the changing terrain that makes for such a good adventure. Too much of the same scenery would make for a dull ride.

I enjoy the variety of my life experience. The ups and downs keep me sharp at the wheel.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

EXPERIENCE AS A MIRROR

"Seek truth and you will find a path."
~Frank Slaughter~

We project ourselves onto other people. If we are angry, we see anger in those with whom we interact. If we are happy and secure, we see that. Kindness sees kindness, and hatred sees hate. So if we focus on extending compassion and generosity into the world, then that is what we will see, and that is what we will feel, and that is what we will experience as truth.

I am whatever I experience in the world. Life, in this way, is a fair exchange.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

GOOD LIVING

"How many things there are which I do not want."
~Socrates~

We over-complicate our lives to the point of insanity. We need only awake and acknowledge our blessings, eat wholesome food in reasonable portions, work with integrity, get a bit of exercise, fresh air, and a good night of sleep, and be kind. Life can be this simple. It need not be melodrama, and it need not be slippery and questionable. Life well lived is a simple thing. It's straightforward, honest, and clear.

Keeping things simple and balanced makes for good living and a quiet heart.

Monday, October 6, 2014

BODY GLOVE

"I sing the body electric..."
~Walt Whitman ~

Sometimes I feel comfortable in my skin and other times, not so much. I think it's possible to be at odds with our very physicality- to be almost numb to our flesh and bones and wear our body like a shell instead of richly inhabiting it with our living energy.
     It feels so solid and secure to be viscerally aware of occupying every inch of my skin, like a perfectly fitting glove: a delight, a connectivity, a oneness, and the most comfortable home I know.

I celebrate my physical self. I am my body as much as I am my soul.

Sunday, October 5, 2014

SIMPLE LIVING

"Be content with what you have, rejoice in the way things are. when you realize there is nothing lacking, the whole world belongs to you."
~ Lao Tzu ~

Perhaps all the wisdom we need for enlightened living can be found in the simple lines of our old and cherished nursery rhyme:

Row, row, row your boat,
Gently down the stream...
Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily,
Life is but a dream.

Seems to me, that pretty much sums things up.

I enjoy my days and accept the fact that most of my striving and grasping is nothing but chasing after the wind.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

DAILY MAINTENANCE

"Renew thyself completely each day; do it again, and again, and again." ~Chinese Inscription quoted by Thoreau in Walden~

If we don't do regular maintenance on our houses, they start to show the lack of care. Paint peels, vines overtake bushes and trees, window panes crack, and all kinds of functioning gadgets cease to function.
     And our bodies and souls are no different. If we don't take care of ourselves in a consistent and compassionate manner, we will wear out and slowly fall apart.  

I take tender loving care of my body and my soul.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

WHO WE ARE

"I am what I am."
~ Popeye ~

We are who we are, and the people we love are who they are as well. We have to work with what we have, and accept our assets and liabilities, and become wiling daily to explore the oceans of our own selves.

I accept myself with all of my gifts and imperfections. I stand square on the earth and feel equal to whatever I may have to face.