The Only Way to Stop Stressing over People You Love

Often we excuse ourselves for nagging, worrying, or trying to control others by appealing to how much we want the best for them.

In reality, those tactics are always:

  • counter-productive
  • annoying
  • a waste of our time
  • detrimental to our health

But, waking up to acceptance and compassion…

  • sets us on a path to peace
  • relieves others of the burden of our neurosis
  • saves the air space for something worthwhile

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Tired of the Same Ole Holiday Rigmarole?

Anytime I want to have more fun, the first step is to take responsibility for Global Boring.

Global Boring can only be cured by eliminating one self-centered person at a time…starting with me.

The most important things I can bring to the party?




Genuine interest in anyone who crosses my path.*


*Yes, that means even the annoying and predictable (who, incidentally, may think I am annoying and predictable).

H’day First Aid

Holidays can be mine-fields, so here are some H’day emotional first aid tips:

When it feels like it’s about me, it usually isn’t, so…

  • remember others have pain too
  • forgive

When it is about me…

  • be humble
  • admit mistakes
  • forgive (myself and others)

When I am tempted to be small…

  • stand tall
  • do something for someone without expecting them to notice
  • move on
  • forgive

In order to improve time with family, friends, romantic interests, co-workers, neighbors, or strangers during the Holidays (and regular days), it always comes down to what I focus on; will it be what I don’t like and what is not working or will it be what I do like and what is working?

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Be Holiday Healthy.

A Smoother Holiday?

A few holidays ago I learned a big lesson.

I hurt someone’s feelings even though I considered how I would feel if someone said what I said to me.

A great adage in some cases, but not when what I said wouldn’t have hurt my feelings. They are shy. I am not. They were wrestling with feelings of insecurity at the moment. I was not.

All along, I was using the wrong measuring stick! I was measuring me instead of them, assuming that we were the same.

Holiday insight:

Evaluate longer. Evaluate with generosity.

So many misunderstandings happen because we don’t understand how things can mean something completely different to someone else. And, to add insult to injury, we judge them for not seeing things as we do.

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How to Get More Respect for My Opinions

When and why others dis my opinions:

  • My opinions are always “junk mail” until they are requested.
  • No one really listens to my advice until they feel seen and heard (telling them I see and hear them doesn’t count).
  • I might think I understand another person’s issues, but what they want is for me to listen longer (no matter how profound I think I am).
  • Others can predict the content of  my “lectures”( and translate them to “Blah blah blah”).
  • Defending my opinions and protecting my ego appear to be my main objectives.

Please, No More Words!

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If our employees are not rolling their eyes when we pontificate about our success, it is probably because they don’t want to lose their jobs.

If our friends are not rolling their eyes when we pontificate about our opinions, it is probably because they don’t want to hurt our feelings.

If our kids, siblings, and romantic partners are not rolling their eyes when we pontificate about what they should do, it is probably because they have tuned us out.

Never too late to learn…

Questions work better than sermons, dialog better than nagging, and giving another the chance to show what they know, better than telling what we know…even when what we know comes from hard knocks and a place of certainty.


Scare Up Some Happiness

Scare up some happiness with…


…by giving…

  • compliments instead of criticism
  • forgiveness instead of grudges
  • compassion instead of complaints
  • attention instead of indifference

For those of us who may accidentally take people for granted, don’t be surprised if they first think it is a trick instead of a treat. 😉 Change can be really scary.

Happiest Halloween!

10 Ways to Stop People from Rolling Their Eyes at Us

  1. Quit nagging. (They’ve already heard it from us too many times. Set boundaries and contingencies instead.)

  2. Quit bragging. (How ever subtlety we do it.)

  3. Quit saying, “I know.” (Say Thank you or That’s interesting instead.)

  4. Quit hustling for worthiness. (Affirm yourself.)

  5. Quit onloading worry and fear on others. (Grow a pair.)

  6. Quit under-or over-communicating. (Listen to understand rather than to respond. Pause, breathe, and think about other points of view before speaking.)

  7. Quit blaming and shaming others. (Learn no-fault communication. Remember we are all human.)

  8. Quit expecting others to change. (Change what we can control: ourselves.)

  9. Quit procrastinating. (Do what we say we’ll do.)

  10. Quit lying or exaggerating. (Admit mistakes. Ask for forgiveness.)


Got Unlovable Things and People?

Love your life
And the living of it
Love your commission (whatever it is)
And its wild call to courage
Love the days difficult to bear
Especially those that threaten to kill you
Love the uninviting terrain that must be scaled
And the raging rivers that must be crossed
Forgive their unforgivable harshness

And, most importantly, love all who travel with you
Especially those with nothing to give
Love all of them the same
Because you have trained your eyes to see
And your heart to love the unfathomable designer of us all

Then love will come to you, easy and strong
Abundant and plenty
When and where you need it
Unbelievable love
To irresistible you

(originally posted April 2015)

Top Ten Ways to Crash Thanksgiving

10. Complain about the holidays.
9. Go on and on about what you can’t eat or shouldn’t have eaten.
8. Get mad or stress about black Friday.
7. Get obnoxiously drunk.
6. Talk behind relatives’ backs.
5. Be callous toward history and those who sacrificed something so we could have what we have.
4. Be self-absorbed, competitive, or talk about yourself all day.
3. Ignore or judge people as unworthy of your time.
2. Be depressed about not having relatives to be with or about having relatives to be with (instead of finding a way to make a difference for someone).
1. Feel entitled.

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(modified repost)