Seasons

Many of us get to enjoy 4 unique seasons, each with its unique pleasures, beauties and activities. But there are some negatives with each season. Example, winter time in some places can be harsh and brutal. I read of a train full of passengers at a standstill for over a day because of the snow. Yet, I know plenty of people who relish in the snow because of the fun activities they can engage in, like skiing, snowboarding, making snowmen with their children. I even know fashionistas who love showing off winter clothing, coats and accessories.

I’d venture to say many more people enjoy summer time. You can dress lighter – I mean who doesn’t love a flowing sun dress or cool shorts? There’s swimming, biking, picnics, ice cream, vacations… the list seems endless for things associated with summer. Now let’s not forget the scorching heat though. This could be deadly and so not fun when 3 minutes after stepping outside there’s sweat beads as big as raindrops rolling down from the nape of your neck to the small of your back down to the soles of your feet!

Spring and autumn are just as glorious. Generally, more moderate temperatures, beautiful colors, blossoming flowers, color changing leaves, good hiking weather, pleasant moods, the aroma- ahhh the aroma: Pumpkin spice, lavender, vanilla, pecan pies….then there’s the allergies, the rain, fickle weather….

Like the seasons we’re constantly changing and growing. There are certain seasons in life we thrive and other we’re more at a standstill. Maybe we could use those seasons to listen, learn, grow, set goals, and try something new so when those thriving seasons arrive we’re prepared, ready to take off running and killing the game. Still in our thriving season we should take time to reach back and lend a helping/mentoring hand to those who are in their still season. This way the circle of helping and growing will continue year round. Most importantly, though, we should always be humble and grateful. Pride comes before a crash, but gratitude means peace.

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Move

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“If you don’t like where you are, move.  You are not a tree”

Are you afraid of change? Change makes me nervous.  I’m excited – filled with anticipation of what’s to come.  I’m also afraid – of the unknown. I don’t know what’s coming so I can’t control it, prepare for it.  If I listened to my fears each time change happened I’d be in the same place I was ten years ago.  No growth, no new experiences, just same old predictable me.

The good thing about change is you always learn something new, even if it’s  unpleasant.  It could be a life lesson- like letting go of that wrong “love” or not killing yourself for that self-serving boss. Change also allows you to move on from an unhappy place.  If there is something that you don’t like, change it….at least take concrete action to make improvements – spruce up that resume and network, call your sibling and work out your differences …. No one or nothing has absolute control over you.  We are free people.  So use that privilege to make the right changes;  it could mean your happiness and peace.

Celebrate your Success

If you don’t celebrate success it won’t celebrate you.

Sometimes we forget to be proud of ourselves, to celebrate our accomplishments.  We get wrapped up in setting up/ meeting/ exceeding the next goal we forget to enjoy the present one.  Or we focus on what we haven’t accomplished, what weighs us down, daily responsibilities…kill joys.

But I have so many friends who are achieving goals and I want them to know I celebrate them, I’m proud of them, and they inspire me.  Some are taking charge of their health by meal planning, eating clean, exercising.  Some have started their own businesses, while  others have moved on from un-supportive employers to ones that  meet their needs.   Others have moved places to follow their dreams.  Many are raising successful families – some as single parents; some have written books, while others courageously face the world each day despite illness and anxieties.

What I realize all of these people have in common is faith and the belief that they deserve happiness and peace.  So they set goals and take action until they succeed.  It’s such a good feeling when you attain a desire.  This joy could be fleeting though if you don’t celebrate your accomplishment because you feel you must find something else to do right away.  Of course it’s good to keep growing and learning and progressing.  But it’s just as important to pause and reflect on your successes. You’ll feel a sense of gratitude, contentment, pride, and motivation to keep pushing forward.  If not, it will be a never-ending rat-race that will sap your energy.

So take a moment and reflect on how you showed up and showed out. I bet you killed the game.  Now I bet you’re beaming with pride.

accomplishment accuracy accurate achievement
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Resilience

sunshine bamboo damyang
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The bamboo that bends is stronger than the oak that 
resists.

 

Toughness.  The ability to recover from difficulties.  Resilience.

This is not always easy. Especially when the problem is challenging and long-lasting. You can feel defeated, hopeless, tired, and want to give up.  But giving up should never be a first option.  True, at one point you have to learn to let go, but that’s only after you’ve tried everything possible to make the situation work.  Once none of your efforts pan out then maybe it’s time to consider a different option, another angle, a new strategy.

In the meantime find the strength to endure by praying for courage and to have the right attitude.  Find a confidant and reveal your concerns, share ideas and solutions. Take time for self-care, to rest, have fun. Contemplate on all that you’ve overcome and survived, all your blessings.  Sing a joyful song loudly, go on a nature walk and enjoy the magnificent creation around you.  You’ll find a measure of peace and clarity.

Challenges don’t define us.  But the lessons we learn and the characteristics we develop from them often do.  So learn resilience.  Don’t give up quickly or give others your power. Resilience will help you cope with life’s challenges with hope -eager expectation, expectation of good .  This way you’ll always be victorious.

 

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My day off

“Time you enjoy wasting is not wasted time.”

I took the day off today and tomorrow.  I feel so happy. I’m learning the importance of self-care and being in tune with my mental, physical, and emotional needs.  I woke up early still but an instant smile and a light- heartedness over flowed within me when I remembered I could use each hour in the next 48 hours the way I choose. I could be productive, I could be lazy, I could do something halfway in between.

That’s  exactly what I did. I took time to handle things that are important to me and I took time to rest- to let my mind wander, then caught it right on time before I started thinking of responsibilities and work. I must say I felt a little guilty laying around not doing anything. But why should I feel guilt? I think we’re so programmed to always be on the go that we find it difficult to relax, to not have to be busy doing something every waking hour.

So I’m really at peace today. So grateful for being able to take time for me, to de-stress, to enjoy the sunshine, to use time how I want.  I’m very happy today.  I hope the same for you. I hope you take time to do you.

Enough

I heard this word today by a motivational speaker. She made the point that when you know you are enough you will stop the struggle to get more and learn to accept, allow, and attract all that adds to you instead of who/what subtracts from you. When you know you have enough the desperate drive to get more will be replaced by the comforting flow of gratitude.

I paused and reflected on this and I must say she made valid points. Thoughts that kept coming to mind after this were: rat race, perfectionism, being over spent, overspending, keeping up with the Jones, anxiety, frustration.  None of that is appealing, or lead to happiness and peace.

When we’re content we’re happy. What defines your contentment?  I value peace tremendously. If it means staying away from the malls and online shopping for months to cut back on financial stress then I do it.  If it means getting together  with a friend at my favorite gelato shop I do it. If it means buying a plane ticket to an exciting new destination…yup I do it. But if it also means saying no….I do that too.  With time I’m learning to be content with enough.  I have enough of what I need, I am enough as a person so I make a great friend/companion/mate…

But truly, when you learn contentment- being satisfied with the things you have without constantly focusing on what you don’t have- your joy increases.  You’ll realize you have enough.

I long for peace that flows like a river.

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