Am I a Dog Growling over My Bowl?

When I am seething with jealousy and bitterness at someone who has what I want, I am like a dog growling over my bowl. I am thinking there is not enough to go around and I want what is mine.

I begrudge their good and…poison myself in the process.

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When I know scarcity is an illusion, that not a human soul can keep me from what is rightfully mine, I am then free to identify with the needs, wants, successes, and failures of others without comparing myself to them, resenting them, or being passive aggressive toward them by pretending to care.

The essence of cool and a cure for jealousy…believing there is no scarcity.

My heart is at your festival. – William Wordsworth

Petty, Pedantic, Preoccupied, Predictable, Powerless?

Sometimes the only thing that reminds me of the neglect of my plants are pathetic looking, drooping leaves. Then I run quickly to get the water. When my inner life needs nourishment there are also warning signs:

1) Preoccupation with my appearance

2) I become so pedantic and predictable that I bore people to death

3) I start being petty and argumentative

4) So preoccupied with my plans that I fail to appreciate things and people around me

5) A feeling of powerlessness and overwhelm

Activities, narcotics, people, food, and drink can only stop the “droop” temporarily. Real presence and energy comes from within.

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When It Is Good to Lower My Standards

It is not always a bad thing to lower my standards. It is a good thing to do when…

  • I have been too critical of myself (as I have aged, I’ve noticed that my appearance standards {ahem, obsessions} have not contributed to mental health)
  • I am too critical of others (my standards do the most harm when used to facilitate a feeling of superiority)
  • my standards were unreasonable (perfectionism) or alienated the people around me (self-righteous)
  • I based my self-worth on my standards (lack of awareness of how ridiculously messed up I am)
  • I bragged about or felt compelled to talk too much about my standards (insecure)

Or, prepare for the institution.

Save Myself the Trouble

Last week, I was unhappy about the gaps in my schedule. This week I am so thankful the gaps came at a fortunate time. How many times must I be reminded that my ability to determine what is good and what is bad is faulty? How many times must I look back and say, “Wow, if I had only known?” before I will learn to hold off on judgment or despair?

In this case, I would have saved myself lots of trouble, worry, frustration, and wasted time and energy.

So, that said, I should start before I get any older, right?

Who Is My Mentor?

From the way I act sometimes, it would appear I am being mentored by an adolescent, wild animal, or politician.

Immature behaviors that display my arrogance, impatience, or lack of awareness flow like water out of a firehose, unless, I make a point to model my behaviors after someone noble and worthy; one who has learned to think carefully before speaking or acting.

So, today I am going to admire my heroes, focus on their powers of self-control and grace, instead of whoever or whatever is in my face.

What a difference it makes when I saturate my mind with Abe Lincoln, Helen Keller, Nelson Mandela, and so many other world-changers who overcame the pull into mediocrity.

End of Week Check UP

Just to make sure that we are not merely self-help groupies who laud clichés but fail to implement, here is the follow-up…

  • Did I remember the ripple effect; that I cannot know the full story or the impact of my life (when I was tempted to undervalue a situation)?
  • Did I remain hopeful (in setbacks and disappointments)?
  • Did I remember to appreciate now (instead of complain about it)?
  • Did I take responsibility for the things that have come into my life (instead of playing the victim)?
  • Did I bring music (instead of noise) to those around me?

Things Always Get Crazy When…


Things always get crazy

When I don’t know what to do next

And feel empty or useless


I remember the answer may be love

Or removing obstacles to love

Not about accomplishing something.


Things can get so crazy

That I will forget about those who,

So similar to me,

Might not have a clue about what to do 

Or how to do it either


Appreciate It…Now or Never

We humans have the audacity to look back at photos from the past and swoon with nostalgia after completely underappreciating what we had at the time! I guess that is better than not appreciating it at all…but…

Nostalgia will not recover lost people, opportunities, places, our youth (or the body we had), and we will have missed the gifts that were ours for the taking, if we had only known how lucky we were at the time!

It’s too late to fix my ingratitude for how skinny I was in the past (when I thought I was fat), but, I can change the future by what I do now. When tempted to complain about…

  • a relationship that irritates me,
  • something that isn’t exactly right, or
  • my appearance

I will stop myself in mid-sentence by saying, “Appreciate it!” and give now it’s just respect before it is gone.

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What Have You Summoned?

Some people say that we have “summoned” whatever has come into our lives. And that made me so angry.

But, while passing the last aid station in a half-marathon, a volunteer asked if I needed anything. Because of pain from Plantar Facsiitis, I answered, “A new foot.” Two weeks later I broke my left tibia and fibula at the ankle. When I saw my foot hanging loose, I thought of that comment. It was the foot that I had disowned.

As my “new foot” (with two plates and ten screws) was healing, I was cautious to treat both feet with utmost respect.

Whether I “summoned” the break or not, I definitely have new appreciation for every bit of my body that I have often taken for granted.

Appreciation summons abundance.

Where Do You Live?


“The words you speak become the house you live in.”  -Hafiz

In the past, when I wasn’t pleased with my situation, I thought that I had been a victim of a cruel fate, injustices, and others’ misjudgments. And, I seldom missed a chance to let everyone know about it. Now I realize:

  • my words were defining my experience.
  • many “injustices” I thought I suffered were self-inflicted. I was just clueless.
  • uncomfortable “accommodations” were part of the journey to appreciating the better ones to come.
  • happiness was always an inside job.

In the beginning was the word.

My words are the architect, the interior designer, and the realtor for the place I want to live.