What Just Happened?

When we wake up and find ourselves in the wrong place

When our life gets worse with time instead of better

When peace has alluded us

When we wonder what went wrong

Eventually we must see the connection

Between our choices and our emotions

Our sowing and our reaping

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Done with Waiting Around

I used to wait around for joy and courage, feeling bummed out. Now I create my own joy and courage by taking my focus off the things that weigh me down, and instead, focusing on what makes me feel joyful and courageous.

Of course, some days are harder than others to make the switch. Yet, as I continue to practice using my voice, my physiology, my thoughts, and music to do this, shifting into a stance of power has become easier and easier. Who knew?

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Now, I am the voice!

Done with waiting for somebody or something else to speak on my behalf.

And the Worst Fault Is…

When I am preoccupied with the faults of exes, politicians, competitors, or relatives, I may be with the majority, but it is the mediocre majority.

When I am preoccupied with the faults of others, I will be tied and bound to ineffectiveness, derailed from happiness, and blind to my own culpability.

When I am preoccupied with the faults of anyone, I will miss the best opportunities of my life while groveling for my own self-worth at the muddy feet of jealousy.

And even worse, by my example, I will pull others down with me, to wallow in the smug and dirty alleys of vanity.

The Nature Doc

It’s nothing new that nature soothes, heals, and puts our senses in order. The problem is often our inability to access nature.

  • If I am caught up in self-pity or the pain of disappointment, sucked into my couch’s black hole…
    • Someone asks me to go outside, I say no
    • And, if I don’t go, it will be more difficult to go later
  • If I am stuck inside working (or sick in bed) all day, I can’t visit the “Nature Doctor”…
    • That’s when I must go to my stored-up memories of mountains and waterfalls
    • Or use my Google machine to call up images
    • Or “switch apps” or “change the channel” in my brain to refresh
  • If I see nature everyday, but it has lost the power to impress me…
    • My callousness to miracles is the most difficult problem to fix
    • I have to imagine being confined underground, in prison, or in a hospital
    • And see the sun and sky for the first time
    • Taste the water, smell the grass, feel the wind, touch a leaf

Shantaram, Shaken, and Surprised

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This is one of the major themes of Gregory David Robert’s experience as portrayed in the book (soon to be movie), Shantaram. Also in Tim Tebow’s book, Shaken. Although, one book deals with the dark realities of life and the other, mostly with those of a fallen football player, the lesson is the same; losing is often the win we need for the long-haul. Accept the pain of losing as it comes, and our character development and re-direction will have countless beneficiaries.

I was pleasantly surprised with that reality recently when my challenged nephew was invited to an event sponsored by Tim Tebow’s ministries; ministries that would not exist if Tim Tebow had not been kicked off of three NFL teams.

When I am Totally Present for You

When I am totally present for you

You feel it

I change your energy

And lend you my strength

 

When I am totally present for you

I step out of my mediocrity

And access my super power

For killing fear and boredom

 

When I am totally present for you

I become concentrated refreshment

By admiring your beauty

In a world of splintered focus

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Falling Upward

This Richard Rohr quote pretty much sums up the tragic plots of countless movies, TV shows, books, and plays (see Shakespeare, Kite Runner, Game of Thrones, This is Us, etc.), but also sadly, wars and worse.

You might recognize this illustration from Madmen. Same song, second verse.

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We’ve heard it since we were children

We must forgive

Starting with ourselves

Yet, we try to beat the odds

And hold on to vapor

Groping like madmen

For the protection of liars

Who will go down with us

Unless we collapse into truth

And choose to fall upward

If You Were to Take Your Life

If you were to take your life today

You would miss the books you hadn’t read

Holding entire worlds to see;

Transcendental jolts of recognition

From sources yet unknown to thee

 

If you were to take your life today

You would miss the transformation

Of your raw, and often cruel, pain

As it passed through the broken shards

Of fantastic light into the purest Novocain

 

If you were to take your life today

You would be so surprised to find

That you had missed blankets of cool relief

That, although delayed, were closer to you

Than ever your disbelief

Just One More

The most moving moment in the movie Hacksaw Ridge was the prayer for “just one more” from the medic who needed the strength to rescue just one more of the seventy-five wounded soldiers he saved on Hacksaw Ridge during World War II. I thought of that resolve and request for strength today when I was facing my weensy little tasks and feeling the lack of motivation and energy.

So when I am overwhelmed by the prospect of making it through a “difficult” day, the answer lies in simply making it through the next step, not the whole frickin list.

Just this one breath. Just this one task.

“Just one more,” seventy-four times, saved seventy-five lives in impossible circumstances.

Whether we know it or not, our willingness to persevere will always make a difference for others.

If I Feel Good, Am I a Good Person?

Bad logic alert!

In Feeling Good, David D. Burns asks the question, “If someone feels really good, does that mean they are a great person?”   The answer is obviously, no. So he makes the point that when we feel bad, it doesn’t follow that we are worthless or despicable, even though this is a thought process common in depression (that perpetuates the depressed state). He reminds us that human beings are not static, but ever changing and growing, so these labels (that depress us) defy logic.

If we change our thoughts, we can change our feelings. We don’t have to fall deeper and deeper into the darkness.

P.S. There are those who never wrestle with feelings of worthlessness. So glad of that. Yet, if you are one of those people, please remember that feeling better is not as easy for the rest of us.

(initially posted 2013)