Monday, September 30, 2013

Rule 11....."Stop being idle. – Don’t think too much or you’ll create a problem that wasn’t even there in the first place.  Evaluate situations and take decisive action.  You cannot change what you refuse to confront.  Making progress involves risk.  Period!  You can’t make it to second base with your foot on first."

I'm working on this one. I tend to over think every thing. I'm a list maker, a planner which isn't necessarily a bad thing unless it interferes with actually getting something done. Now, I'm trying my best to make a "list" of just one thing. If I accomplish that thing in a day, I feel fulfilled and if I accomplish even more, I feel like a champion!

Sunday, September 29, 2013

If you've never tried meditation, try this site that my friend, Jacki, sent me to. They are called healing blessings and they are available either to listen to on line or to download to an app to listen to anytime. I just finished my first one and I do feel calmer, more at peace. I intend to make a daily practice of this. It may be how I start my day, following my gratitude prayers. How can I possibly have a bad day after a start like that? I've also decided to start exercising again...mildly at first since I'm so out of shape but I know from past experience, if things are happening in your life over which you have no control, it helps to find something that you can control and work toward that. Try it and the meditation, both work! :)
Rule 10 from the list, 30 Things to STOP Doing to Yourself: Stop exclusively looking to others for happiness. – If you’re not happy with who you are on the inside, you won’t be happy in a long-term relationship with anyone else either. You have to create stability in your own life first before you can share it with someone else. 

I don't think I do this although I'm sure I did in the past. I think this statement is true of a lot of young girls who so desperately want someone to care about them. They are willing to change themselves to try to be who they think the other person wants. I think that a lot of women never out grow this trait. I have someone dear to me who has gone from one bad relationship to another with manipulative and abusive men because she thought if she loved them enough, if they loved her enough, they would change. Unfortunately, it doesn't work that way. There is a Bonnie Raitt song that says, "How do I expect them to love me when they can't even love themselves?" So, the problem perpetuates. If this is you, stop now and start loving yourself. You are the only person you can change. If you love yourself, you will know that you deserve to be loved by someone else and you won't have to change them or yourself to make that happen.

I just realize that I do do this and have done it my entire life, it just doesn't always involve a "love interest" with me. It has to do with my family and how I created this perfect scenario in my mind of who they are, who we are as a family and who I am. It was all made up and not matter how much I tried, I much I imagined, it wasn't going to happen. I love them but they aren't perfect and neither am I. But the good news, I've figured out what to do about it and what to do about my embarrassing brain lapses(see story at the end) When faced with a situation that you can't do anything about, find something you can do something about and that's exercise. I've decided, after yesterday's embarrassing "brain lapse," that I'm going to start working out again. It's always what's helped in the past, exercise, yoga, and meditation. When there are situations I can't control (which seems to be most these days, lol), I work on something I can control, something where I have complete control. It's funny that I haven't done this before but I guess I just wasn't ready to change. I kept waiting for situations to change and that, of course, wasn't going to happen. So, now, I need to take charge again. Now, the brain lapse story.......I embarrassed myself so badly yesterday. First, I've been doing some strange things lately. I'd think that I was losing my mind but I know from past experience that these "brain lapses" I've been having are because of stress. I lost my best friend a few weeks ago and when she was dying, a sibling decided to throw a little fit on me...okay, it was a big, major fit which ended in her telling me to get out and stay out of her life. The family upset came at the worst possible time when I already felt as if I was just hanging on by a thread emotionally and my sister snipped that string. I've had some strange lapses lately but the most embarrassing came yesterday when I walked into a reception being held for our retiring mailman...that I've known for 30 years! And I suddenly thought, I won't be able to recognize him, I don't know any of these people. I know that sounds crazy but for a few minutes, I felt completely lost and that was enough time for me to walk up to a complete stranger, shake his hand and tell him I'd miss him!!!! I wish you'd seen the look on his wife's face! lol....Then, I turn around and see some friends and then my very familiar mailman who thankfully hadn't seen my humiliating mistake. Like I said, I would think I was becoming senile or total breakdown but I remember similar.... if not so embarrassing..... things that happened 23 years ago when I lost my mom. ..........

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Rule #9 on the list of things to STOP doing to yourself: Stop trying to buy happiness. – Many of the things we desire are expensive.  But the truth is, the things that really satisfy us are totally free – love, laughter and working on our passions.

I have to admit that I've done this before. It's probably the main reason that I'm so in debt to credit card companies....a subject for another date. I'm beginning to slowly learn, in my old age, what is really important and what makes me happy.

Here is a little film that was eye opening for me. The number one factor in determining our happiness??.....our level of gratitude. Now, wasn't that easy?

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Stress symptoms: Effects on your body and behavior

By Mayo Clinic staff

Stress symptoms may be affecting your health, even though you might not realize it. You may think illness is to blame for that nagging headache, your frequent insomnia or your decreased productivity at work. But stress may actually be the culprit.

Common effects of stress

Indeed, stress symptoms can affect your body, your thoughts and feelings, and your behavior. Being able to recognize common stress symptoms can give you a jump on managing them. Stress that's left unchecked can contribute to health problems, such as high blood pressure, heart disease, obesity and diabetes.

Common effects of stress ...

... On your body
Muscle tension or pain
Chest pain
Change in sex drive
Stomach upset
Sleep problems

... On your mood
Lack of motivation or focus
Irritability or anger
Sadness or depression

... On your behavior
Overeating or undereating
Angry outbursts
Drug or alcohol abuse
Tobacco use
Social withdrawal

Except for the drug, alcohol or tobacco abuse, I've been experiencing all of these symptoms over the last few months. Stress is understandable considering that I've had several major losses in my life. I'm still mourning but I have to take control of my life again. If you, too, are dealing with stress and the symptoms above, here is what the experts at the Mayo Clinic suggest:

Act to manage stress

If you have stress symptoms, taking steps to manage your stress can have numerous health benefits. Explore stress management strategies, such as:
  • Physical activity
  • Relaxation techniques
  • Meditation
  • Yoga
  • Tai chi
And be sure to get plenty of sleep, eat a balanced diet, and avoid tobacco use and excess caffeine and alcohol intake.

When to seek help

If you're not sure if stress is the cause or if you've taken steps to control your stress but your symptoms continue, see your doctor. Your doctor may want to check for other potential causes.
Also, if you have chest pain, especially if it occurs during physical activity or is accompanied by shortness of breath, sweating, dizziness, nausea, or pain radiating into your shoulder and arm, get emergency help immediately. These may be warning signs of a heart attack and not simply stress symptoms.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Fear Versus Joy.....

Rule 7 in the 30 Things to Stop Doing to Yourself: Stop being scared to make a mistake. – Doing something and getting it wrong is at least ten times more productive than doing nothing.  Every success has a trail of failures behind it, and every failure is leading towards success.  You end up regretting the things you did NOT do far more than the things you did...... I read an article not too long ago in which several of the top business people and entrepreneurs in the country were interviewed. When asked the secret to their success, almost all of them said, past failures. They said that it wasn't just not giving up and getting back up and trying again but learning from your mistakes and failures and viewing them as  stepping stones not  stumbling blocks. There have been many times in my life when I've been afraid of taking that next step or trying again. Nearly everyone in my life or at least the people who know me best have told me that I over analyze, over think everything. I tend to either talk myself out of taking a chance or petrify myself with the fear of what could happen. A very wise friend told me once...well actually multiple times until I finally listened to him ;) ..... things can just as easily go right as wrong. I did eventually hear him and I realized that all of the times that things had gone wrong in my life all had eventually worked out for the good in the end. When that epiphany finally hit me, I lost all of my fear and anxiety. I'd been terrified of riding again after a bad fall many years ago but on the day I realized that, in my entire life, my worst fears had rarely been realized, I got on a horse again with not only confidence and zero fear but joy! Letting go of our fears is so freeing and most importantly, it frees us to feel joy. In my mind, joy and fear are polar opposites and so can not exist on the same plane. This is one case where you absolutely can not have one without letting go of the other. So, I choose joy.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

A big AMEN on this rule from 30 Things to Stop Doing to Yourself: Stop trying to hold onto the past. – You can’t start the next chapter of your life if you keep re-reading your last one.

I amazed myself this morning when I had another epiphany. Strong word, I realize that but I find no other that fits the revelations I've been having lately about myself, my family, my history, my life. There is a verse in the Bible, 13th Corinthians: ....When I was a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child, but when I became a man, I put away childish things. For now we see through a glass, darkly but then face to face.

I always wondered what that last sentence meant. Now, I think I finally do understand. Now, I'm a grown up and even though I'm not liking everything I've realized, I am finally seeing life more clearly. I look back and I see the situations, the actions and influences of those around me who have shaped the person I became. I think we are all born with certain personalities and tendencies but I also believe that the life we live, especially during those formative years, can at least bend that person we were born to be into other directions, other forms. It truly is like working with a ball of clay. The clay has certain characteristics when it begins but as we manipulate it, stretch it, roll it, mold it, turn it on a wheel, we shape it into what we want it to be and change it from what it was. I recently realized that I've been living in the past but not a past that actually ever existed but rather the one I had created in my mind. Lately, I've been looking back through that dark glass and the things that were hidden, the things that were disguised by me have been revealed. I'm finally facing the truth of me, of my family, of my siblings. I've come quickly to understanding of who I am and they really are. At first there was a lot of judgement on my part but I've put that aside now. I've accepted them and their reality and truth, just as I've finally accepted myself. I may not agree with them but I accept that they are who they are and I'm never going to change that. This has been a very painful year for me for many reasons. There has been great loss, amazing revelations and understanding gained, there has been conflict, pain, anger and hurt but like all births, I should expect this one to be all of those things. I am not happy for the journey as hard as it was, would certainly not want to relive it but I am much better for having endured. I've come out the other side, wiser and seeing more clearly if darkly. The best part is, I'm ready to move forward for the first time in a long time. I'm looking forward to tomorrow and the next day and the next. I'm still struggling with leaving the past behind especially the recent past but I realize that if I want to sail, I have to cut the tethers that have anchored me in the past. You can't move forward while you're looking back. Take what you can from the past, the lessons learned, the wisdom  and confidence gained and forget the rest. If it doesn't benefit you, it's too heavy to carry on your journey. Take with you only what is necessary and move on.

Friday, September 20, 2013

I just realized that I started this blog four years ago. I think about the progress I've made and it all is in the emotional and spiritual arenas. I've failed miserably in the getting fit and slim categories. Still, I'm not giving up because I think I had to fix the inside of me before I fixed the outside. The weight I put on fifteen, sixteen years ago has been a buffer of sort, a cushion against life's blows. That was before I learned to duck, dodge and hit back. I've been through the fire and I've come out of the forge bent a bit but much stronger than I went in. I know who I am now and I like who I am now. 
Rule number 5: Stop trying to be someone you’re not. – One of the greatest challenges in life is being yourself in a world that’s trying to make you like everyone else.  Someone will always be prettier, someone will always be smarter, someone will always be younger, but they will never be you.  Don’t change so people will like you.  Be yourself and the right people will love the real you.

I think that I was miserable for many years when I should have been very happy because I didn't know who I was. I kept trying to be the person that I thought everyone expected me to be or the person that I wanted to be but thought I never really could be. I think this has been a trend with me because I often made the people in my life into who I wanted them to be in my mind and perception. When I finally found out who they really were, I was often disappointed, even hurt because they didn't live up to my expectations or they did something totally out of the character that I'd built around them. It was the same with myself, I never could live up to the expectations in my head. I guess I wanted a perfect world with perfect inhabitants and that was never going to be because we're all only human. We've all got our baggage and our insecurities. We are all very much alike in so many ways, despite our diverse backgrounds and the direction our journey has taken us. I spent most of my life feeling as if I was less than everyone else but trying to convince everyone, including myself, that I was a perfect person with the perfect life. I ended up feeling ashamed and embarrassed when I realized people were seeing through my facade and even more so for carrying around what I thought was the truth of who I was. Now, I finally realize that I am much more than who I thought I was and although different, I'm just as good as who I pretended to be... maybe even better because, in life as in art, there is nothing better than an original. I'm finally beginning to treasure myself for who I am because I am finally the unique and original creation that I always wanted to be. I'm embracing all of the many facets of my life, even the parts I was once ashamed of. I feel as if I'm finally becoming the true me. I may be a bit weathered and scarred from my journey but those things only enhance my patina and the beauty of my heart, soul and mind. We are each a unique work of art. I'm beginning to think that the secret of life is unearthing the treasure that is us. 

Thursday, September 19, 2013

You all know that I recently lost someone dear to me and at the same time, had a relationship with a family member ended abruptly and by their choice and reasons not my own. My foundation has felt shaky and I did what I usually do when confronted with life's hardships, I took to ground and hid, lol. Really, I just retreated into my home as if it were a cave and have hidden away. Being sad, grieving is natural but my friend told me before she died that we are getting too old and life is too short to spend it doing things that we don't thoroughly enjoy. Today, I've had several things happen that feel like my friend talking to me again. First, her brother called this morning to see how I was doing. I've been worried about him and kept wanting to call and check on him. Like me, he's grieving but he's also made some decisions prompted by his sister's death. He's changing his career for one less stressful and more fun. He said, life's just too short and uncertain, we have to start enjoying it. The second thing came in an article that I've been reading and posting daily in my blog. It is the second of two articles. The first was 30 things to start doing for yourself and this one is 30 things to stop doing to yourself. This was today's rule, "Stop putting your own needs on the back burner. – The most painful thing is losing yourself in the process of loving someone too much, and forgetting that you are special too.  Yes, help others; but help yourself too.  If there was ever a moment to follow your passion and do something that matters to you, that moment is now." I was surprised that the rule so closely followed my conversation with Charlie. Then, I checked my email and there was a message from a stranger who'd seen my photography and wanted to tell me how much it meant to her, a lifelong horse woman. As I read what she wrote, I realized how I'd been neglecting my horses, my photography and my art during these last few trying months. I remembered how during the most difficult times, my horses were the one constant and they seemed to sense that I needed their affection. I've gotten more unsolicited nuzzles and horsie hugs during all of this than I ever have. All of this might just be a coincidence but I feel like my friend is talking to me and telling me to get on with living. The stranger ended the email with "sending you love and joy." I'm ready to embrace both again. 
And on that list of 30 things to stop doing to yourself: Number 4, Stop putting your own needs on the back burner. – The most painful thing is losing yourself in the process of loving someone too much, and forgetting that you are special too.  Yes, help others; but help yourself too.  If there was ever a moment to follow your passion and do something that matters to you, that moment is now.

This is so odd because I received a call from my late friend Candis's brother, Charlie, this morning. It was so good to hear from him. I've been thinking about him for days and thinking of calling. We talked about many things but we discussed at length the need to start really living our lives, doing what we want to do and enjoying each day. Candis's death has pointed out to both of us that the only time we can be sure of is this moment right here, right now so we'd better make it count.

I've been very understandably sad and cocooning as a friend calls it, basically hiding out in this house and sleeping a lot....or not. But I feel like this is my first message from my new angel. She's telling me to start living my life again. I hear you Candis and I will do. I haven't forgotten other promises either my sister. Thinking on them and how to do what you asked.
My DHC challenge this morning was to brush and floss after dinner. I've made it one of my goals...or mid-year brush and floss at least twice a day. The brushing is a habit but the flossing, not so much. So, I'm trying to turn it into a habit. I set a goal at the first of August to create some healthy habits through 30 days of change. Then, as often happens, life intervened and threw many unexpected things at me, quite a few curve balls. Not only did my new healthy habits fall by the curbside but it seemed to be difficult to do even long standing habits and tasks. So I may start again with that project and try to make a healthy change or improve a healthy habit in some way every single day for thirty days. They say that it takes around a month to develop a habit so I guess, we are really looking at two months but after the past few months, I need some new direction and motivation. So here goes.....

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Monday, September 16, 2013

30 Things to STOP Doing.......Number 3: Stop lying to yourself. – You can lie to anyone else in the world, but you can’t lie to yourself.  Our lives improve only when we take chances, and the first and most difficult chance we can take is to be honest with ourselves.

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Yesterday was a hard day. My best friend, my chosen sister passed away late Thursday night. Yesterday, her brother asked me to go with him to mark her gravesite at a little church far out in the country. It is a beautiful resting spot for her underneath the shade of a large tree. Then we went to pick out her casket and make the arrangements for her funeral. Her sweet cousin, Susie, came in and brought a prayer quilt that the Methodist ladies had sewn and blessed for her. Tied to the quilt was a little pendant I'd made for her on the day she passed. The pendant contained a feather that had floated down to my feet that morning right after her brother, Charlie, had called to tell me that she'd taken a turn for the worse and I needed to come right away. The feather was significant. I went to see a psychic on my 50th birthday. I know, it sounds crazy but it was a whim and I went in an open minded sceptic, lol. Then he told me things that there was no way for him to have known and also told me that my Mama would send me feathers to let me know she was still watching over me. I didn't believe him until the next day when I'd just parked my car, the window was down and in through it a beautiful, unusual feather came floating and landed in my lap. Since that day, whenever I'm upset, I find feathers. Often they just fall from the sky without a bird in sight. Whether it is truly my mom or not, it brings me comfort and when I saw that feather, I knew it was meant for Candis not me. She'd told me just a few weeks ago that soon, I'd have two angels watching over me. So, I put the feather in a locket and took it to her. She had already slipped into a deep sleep but I hope she knows the feather was there. I know she has her own wings now and she's flying free of pain and worry. That in itself is a blessing, as was spending time with her brother and cousin. We laughed as much as we cried and a friend later told me that is the sign that the one who passed was so beloved when people can celebrate their life as well as mourn them. My heart is still broken and I miss her so much already that it is almost unbearable but just knowing her for almost the entirety of my life was a blessing. She was so loved by so many people. I've never seen such an outpouring of love and compassion as she received from a multitude of friends in her final days. She'd worked at a hospital for over 35 years and the people she worked with cared so much about her that they were there for her night and day. They were such angels. How lucky she was to have such friends and how very, very lucky I was to have had her be a part of my life. It is a special person who evokes that much love from others. My last blessing, my last gratitude is for all of the love, support and compassion that has been shown to me by my friends, my precious sister and my husband over the last two days. Another dear friend told me yesterday, I know you miss her but just remember she and her love are portable now because you will forever carry her with you in your heart where ever you go. That is my final gratitude. Soar on those wings, my sweet friend. You earned them. Love you always, Candis.
Candis Snow-Nicely July 1955-September 2013
 When we were young, Candis won the Junior Miss title. One of our neighbors wrote for the local paper and she asked to interview Candis. I'll always remember what she wrote at the end of the article, Candis is a young woman who embraces life and lives it to the fullest. That so describes Candis. And if she loved you, she loved you completely and unconditionally and always. That is why she was so very much loved by so many. She had the biggest, most compassionate heart of anyone I've ever known and she shared it so freely. How very, very lucky I was to have had her friendship for almost the entirety of our lives. How blessed was anyone who knew her and was loved by her.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Okay, a post about something besides my recent whine fest, lol. I'm okay, I've weathered this storm and even though I keep hitting little patches of turmoil, my sails are full and I'm moving forward.

Now, the good news: I shot my first wedding a week ago and I lived through it. I actually got some pretty good shots and I am almost through with edits on them. I'll be posting them all online as soon as they are done but for now, a few samples:

RULE 3: Stop lying to yourself. – You can lie to anyone else in the world, but you can’t lie to yourself.  Our lives improve only when we take chances, and the first and most difficult chance we can take is to be honest with ourselves.............It's an odd thing, I've always said that I can't lie. It's not that I'm such a good person, I'm just incapable of lying. The few times I've tried, I fail miserably and end up telling the truth in the end. That's not saying that I haven't on occasion used a little white lie to get out of doing something, going somewhere that I either don't want to go or perhaps am just too busy to attend and the other person insisted but I never tell the lie myself, I let Steve do it, lol. But, even though I can't lie to others, I've spent a lot of year lying to myself and just as they say about any lie, eventually it catches up with you. So, that is where I'm at now, facing the the truth. It is painful but at the same time, I think another old adage applies here, the truth shall set you free........and that it does. Close your eyes, trust your wings and then leap. You might be surprised how far you can go once you let go of the lies, embrace the truth and start flying.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

cutting the anchors........

If you've been reading this whine fest that I call a blog/journal lately, you know that I've been facing rejection from my family....the one I was born with anyway. It's been an extremely painful experience and I've gone through a lot of anxiety fueled by a tangle of other emotions from anger to guilt because the person who started this is dying but I can't help feeling angry because not only is her anger at me unjustified but the story that she's telling the rest of my family is not based on fact either. This left me with an extreme sadness and heartache that never seemed to go away. I went asleep with it and I woke up with it until the day I finally accepted there was nothing I could do about it. I've felt at peace for almost a week and I was amazed at how quickly it came about. I didn't know if the anxiety vanishing was to do with prayers from my Christian friends, blessings from my Buddhist friend, or my own soul searching and revelations about just how my family works and the acceptance of that....or all of the above but I welcomed the relief. Then this morning something else happened to upset the apple cart and pointed out to me just how complete my familial exile actually is. I find out that one of my other nieces is also not speaking to me and she is planning a visit here, to the town I live in but I evidently am not only not going to be included but wouldn't have even been informed she was here if I hadn't found out by accident. I can understand my sister's own daughters but I have to wonder exactly what she has told them all to make the rest of the family reject me. I have to admit, it cut to the quick and even more so because I've listened to my sister talk and complain about all of them over the years. I'd listen to her, try to console her for whatever wrong they'd supposedly done to her but it never changed my own opinion of them or caused me to banish them from my life. I always realized that my sister was very much like my father and had inherited his manipulative ways and what I call the "it's all about me" syndrome. So, I have to admit, what hurts the most is not the rejection but realizing that they aren't taking whatever she's saying with the same grain of salt; that they aren't giving me the benefit of a doubt. But God does work in mysterious ways because I came across this article this morning and it describes my family dynamics to a T. It also goes on to describe me to a T because it talks about someone like me who kept striving for years to turn them into the family wanted instead of accepting that as impossible. And it is like my friends and husband, Steve, have been telling me, I've just got to cut those tethers and walk away.

The snippet from the article: "Some family conflict is perpetual. It has no resolution, because it is based on lasting differences in personalities and needs. The differences are in place between mom and dad long before the kids are born and things just snowball over time.

In these 'un-family units' with impossible issues, time spent together is like hanging out in emotional hell. If you come from such a family, the best thing to do is have little contact with them and invest yourself heavily in creating a very different kind of family that is capable of being close to you and to whom you are willing to be close."

You can read the entire article here:"

I'm not saying that this is easy and I still worry about my sister who is very ill but I can't do anything about that either. I have to accept that not having me in her life is her choice. As for the others, I have to realize that if my love was not enough, my words won't be either. I could defend myself to them, I could apologize to her for something I didn't do or say but in the end, the underlying resentment would still be there and any time spent with any of them would have that heavy cloud hanging over it. So what good would that do them or me? No, I think it is time I take the advice of this article, Steve and the family I've made and move on.
Rule 2: Stop running from your problems. – Face them head on.  No, it won’t be easy.  There is no person in the world capable of flawlessly handling every punch thrown at them.  We aren’t supposed to be able to instantly solve problems.  That’s not how we’re made.  In fact, we’re made to get upset, sad, hurt, stumble and fall.  Because that’s the whole purpose of living – to face problems, learn, adapt, and solve them over the course of time.  This is what ultimately molds us into the person we become......I've always said that we learn and grow only through troubles and heartache but boy oh boy, joy is a lot more enjoyable. Of course, we have to have the bad times to fully appreciate the good. So face your problems today but appreciate the blessings the day is sure to hold, too....even if it takes you a while to find them. :)

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

We just finished the 30 Things to START Doing for Yourself and now, we begin the 30 Things to STOP Doing To Yourself. I've been taught lately just how much alike we all are. Most of us struggle with insecurities and a lack of self confidence. Most of us are afraid of failure. All of us have our own trials and tribulations to deal with and our smiles often mask our heartbreak. All the more reason not only to be kind to others but to ourselves. This 30 days of change will be one where we change or stop bad habits. So, to get us started, here is RULE 1: Stop spending time with the wrong people. – Life is too short to spend time with people who suck the happiness out of you.  If someone wants you in their life, they’ll make room for you.  You shouldn’t have to fight for a spot.  Never, ever insist yourself to someone who continuously overlooks your worth.  And remember, it’s not the people that stand by your side when you’re at your best, but the ones who stand beside you when you’re at your worst that are your true friends......Amen on Rule One! I've learned this first hand lately and I'm not going to say that it was easy. It hurt like hell to be honest. I still love this person dearly, I still worry about her and she is constantly in my prayers but it was literally making me sick with anxiety over her rejection of me. I went through a lot of soul searching. One minute, I'd be angry because I thought she was being unnecessarily cruel, unfair and her anger was unjustified and not based on the truth but what she wanted to hear and believe. Then I would feel guilty because she is very sick and I knew that the anger she was directing at me was really her anger and frustration at the sickness. I was feeling a tangle of emotions, hurt, fear, concern as well as the anger and guilt. I finally realized that I was only hurting myself and no amount of worry or anxiety was going to change the situation and that all I would accomplish with it was making myself sick. There were friends, gifts from God, who rallied around me, supported me, loved me. And I began to realize, that it didn't matter how much I loved her, I was never going to get the love I wanted, needed returned to me. I decided that it was her choice not wanting me in her life and if my attempts at love hadn't won her over and changed her mind, my words or worries weren't going to even make a dent in the wall she'd put up between us. I had no choice but to move on and once I realized that, my tension eased, my worry left, and I felt renewed and alive. I saw a quote today that sums up the way I felt as I decided to move forward with my life: "There comes a time when you just know that you've got to trust, believe and completely let go. You may feel as if you're falling....but when you really open your eyes, you will realize that you're flying!"

Monday, September 2, 2013

We are down to the final RULE......Rule 30: Start noticing how wealthy you are right now. Even when times are tough, it’s always important to keep things in perspective.  You didn’t go to sleep hungry last night.  You didn’t go to sleep outside.  You had a choice of what clothes to wear this morning.  You hardly broke a sweat today.  You didn’t spend a minute in fear.  You have access to clean drinking water.  You have access to medical care.  You have access to the Internet.  You can read.  Some might say you are incredibly wealthy, so remember to be grateful for all the things you do have.

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Overlook the source of the quote since she is probably quoting
someone else anyway. Still, I don't usually turn to actors for
my life guidance but it is a quote full of wisdom.
Well, we are almost to the end of our RULES. This is number 29 and it is one I've been made very aware of lately. I have a friend, that I know I've mentioned before, who has trained in India as a Buddhist healer. She tells me that all things are energy and to live a more fulfilled life we must try to replace the negative energies or anger, fear, hurt (to name but a few) with good energies of love, confidence, hope (to name another few). I admit that I tend to dwell on bad things and bad energy. I'm an analyzer, I pick everything apart. I want the world to make sense and I want people to make sense but neither seldom do. So, I end up frustrated and stressed because I want, expect others to behave in a certain way and when they don't, I'm the one taking on all of that negative energy. Needless to say, it is not good for my psyche or physical health. So, since it is impossible to change any one else, the only thing I can do is change my own reaction. I need to replace all of that negative energy with good, pure energy and then, instead of sucking the life out of my life, I'm hoping that I will be in turn energized instead. Positive begets positive is the hard learned lesson for me but it has been learned so that is a very good thing. Rule 29: Start focusing on the possibility of positive outcomes. – The mind must believe it CAN do something before it is capable of actually doing it.  The way to overcome negative thoughts and destructive emotions is to develop opposing, positive emotions that are stronger and more powerful.  Listen to your self-talk and replace negative thoughts with positive ones.  Regardless of how a situation seems, focus on what you DO WANT to happen, and then take the next positive step forward.  No, you can’t control everything that happens to you, but you can control how you react to things.  Everyone’s life has positive and negative aspects – whether or not you’re happy and successful in the long run depends greatly on which aspects you focus on.