Friday, January 25, 2019

Don't Judge

How often do you feel invisible, manipulated, or without a voice? There are so many times I witness people being bullied or told what to do; whether it's when watching the TV news, reading an online article, or standing in line at the grocery store. Some people like to feel superior, but to do so they need to make someone else feel inferior first. They feel they need to shout and talk loudly at people in order to be heard, even when they are standing right next to them. They're trying to manipulate the situation. When climbing up on to their pedestal to be seen, they need to push others out of the way or down in order to get where they feel they should be.

For all of the cruelty I see in the world; the hatred, the jealousies, and the ignorance ... I also see hope. I see people holding doors open for strangers, I see people giving hugs to show their support, and I see people stopping to listen and pay attention to people. I prefer to hang on to the hope. It helps me to maintain my faith in a world that is currently full of power trips and insecurities.

Let's take a minute and focus on the ignorance. Being ignorant doesn't necessarily make a person dumb, but it does mean they are uninformed. They don't have all the answers; they haven't stopped to look at the whole picture, yet they've managed to find a way to unfairly place blame or judgment on someone or a situation. 

How many times have you been criticized for something you weren't even part of? How many times have you worked hard at something only for someone to generalize what you do as if even a monkey to do it. They make unfair assumptions without ever knowing you or even what you do. We need to remember to NOT judge what's on the surface, especially when we don't have a clue what's beneath it or behind it. Knowledge is a great thing. It enables us to be more understanding, more empathetic, and more aware. Sure, it may take us a little bit more time to become informed, but I'd consider that time well spent if it helped me to not be ignorant or make false judgments.

As usual, it's just my two cents worth of wisdom, but wisdom comes from experience and learning life lessons the hard way.


Saturday, January 12, 2019

Protecting Your Spirit

We are now twelve days into a the new year. Many have successfully set goals for themselves. Many have already broken their resolutions. Where do you stand? Are you starting out the year knowing what you want and where you want to be?

Each year I begin by hoping for clarity; trying to decide exactly where I see myself and most importantly, what will it take for me to get there. What kind of effort and commitment will I need to garner up? Do I see myself ten pounds lighter? Do I see deeper and growing relationships with my friends? Do I see new projects on my horizon?

Lately, what I've been striving for is reclaiming my strength. I see myself stronger; in body, mind, and spirit. That's no easy task, for sure. It's a very complicated process. I need to take better care of my body. I need to succeed more at reducing stress. And most importantly, for me, is learning to nurture my spirit. My spirit is what drives me more than anything else. It's that voice inside of me that pushes me to try harder, to walk further, to be more creative, and to learn to trust my instincts more. There are always going to be more voices telling us why we can't or shouldn't do something, that we aren't good enough, and that we don't have anything valuable to offer. We need to learn to drown those voices out more with the voice of strength that lies inside each one of us. Some days the voice of my spirit is nothing more than a whisper, but some days it wants to shout loud enough to shake the walls. Those are the days when I have to stop and pay attention.

It's okay to try to achieve things that other people think are silly or impossible. It's okay to go after what makes you happy and whole. I'm learning that sometimes it's even okay to put yourself first.

Putting yourself first ... that's the trickiest of them all, especially if you have relationships with other people. Being a wife - I try to be supportive to my husband. Being a mom (and it doesn't matter how old your kids are) - we worry about them. Being part of a care giving team - there are always lots of unexpected stresses. Being an employee - you try to always put your best effort forward. There are always the same number of hours in a day, but sometimes the demands we're dealt exceed the amount of time we have, leaving nothing left over for us. Our spirit needs to be supported as well; I'm discovering that the weaker my spirit is, the less I have to give to everyone else.

So ... my goal for this year? To improve my body, challenge my mind, and protect my spirit.

How are your goals going so far? 
Anything I can do to be supportive?