Monthly Archives: July 2011

Feeling Sad

We experience many types of loss in life. Feeling sad when we are separated from someone or something we care about is natural and has an important, adaptive function. Feeling sad doesn’t mean we’re unhappy people, ungrateful or whiners; it just means we’ve lost something that’s meaningful to us, and we’re healthy and secure enough to feel it. It means we have the capacity to care and form significant attachments. When we experience a loss we are meant to feel pain.
. . . . . . . . . . .
The day that we can’t form strong, meaningful attachments is the day our world will fall apart, because nothing will mean anything.

-from the Magic of Forgiveness by Tian Dayton, PhD

Inside Out

How accurately does the person you are on the outside express the reality of the person you truly are on the inside? The more faithfully your outer life mirrors your inner dreams and values, the more fulfilling your whole life will be.

Success cannot be reached by pursuing someone else’s concept of what it should be. Success is reached by living true to your own visions and dreams for life.

So what are those visions? What are those dreams?

Imagine that you could snap your fingers and make life into everything you would like it to be. Then challenge yourself to describe that ideal life in every beautiful, meaningful detail.

You have the opportunity, in this very moment, to begin expressing and fulfilling that ideal life. In some small yet meaninngful way, you can start right now to make the outer world into a reflection of your most deeply held inner values.

Let the best of what is within you expand outward into the world around you. And your world will become a truly great place to be.

-Ralph Marston

I Am Determined to See Things Differently

The world we see that seems so insane may be the result of a belief system that isn’t working, The belief system says that all the negative things that happened to me in the past will continue into the future. This makes the past and the future one and the same. It’s our memory of our fear and pain that makes us feel so vulnerable. It’s this feeling of vulnerability that makes us want to control and predict the future at all costs.

I have found myself in that mode this past few days. I became overwhelmed by all the things that were happening that I didn’t like, and forgot that I have the control over whether my life continues this way. I found myself becoming angry and defensive. I watched as I tried to control not only my own outcomes, but that of others. When I begin to see this happening, I’m not crazy about the person I become.

Our old belief system assumes that the anger occurs because we have been attacked, and to counterattack is justified. We think we are responsible for protecting ourselves.

If we’re willing, we can change our belief system. But that requires thinking outside the box a little. It means letting go of the investment we have in holding on to our fear, anger, guilt or pain.

We don’t have to act like a robot, simply reacting to what other people say or do to us. We can recognize that our responses are determined only by our own decisions.
Help me claim my freedom by exercising the power of my decision to see people and events with Love instead of fear and anger.

Things Are Not Always Black or White

When I was in elementary school, I got into a major argument with a boy in my class. I have forgotten what the argument was about, but I have never forgotten the lesson I learned that day.

I was convinced that I was right and he was wrong. And he was just as convinced that I was wrong and he was right. The teacher decided to teach us a very important lesson. She brought us up to the front of the class and placed him on one side of her desk and me on the other. In the middle of her desk was a large, round object. I could clearly see that it was black. She asked the boy what color the object was. “White,” he answered.

I couldn’t believe he said the object was white, when it was obviously black! Another argument started between my classmate and me, this time about the color of the object.

The teacher told me to go stand where the boy was standing and told him to come stand where I had been. We changed places, and now she asked me what the color of the object was. I had to answer, “White.”

It was an object with two differently colored sides, and from his viewpoint it was white. Only from my side was it black.

My teacher taught me a very important lesson that day: You must stand in the other person’s shoes and look at the situation through their eyes in order to truly understand their perspective.

-by Judie Paxton from Chicken Soup for the Kid’s Soul

Be the Instrument

When I was younger, I played the flute and piccolo. Before I decided to major in psychology instead of music, I became pretty proficient as a flautist. But if the flute was just sitting on my bed or in it’s case, it didn’t make music. I had to pick it up and play it to make the music.

The same principle applies when we think about our lives. It’s very clear to me that I don’t actually help people. I understand that I am just the tool or instrument that is available to help them effect change in their lives.

Saint Francis used to pray “Make me an instrument of thy peace”. Mahatma Gandhi said “Be the change you want to see in the world.”

They weren’t asking for peace or change to be granted to them. They both understood that to have something, we must become active in the direction we want to go.

So if you want something in your life to change, or if you’re upset about the way things are in the world right now, decide what it is you would rather see in the world. Then work on exhibiting those qualities. What we put out into the world is what we get back.