Staying Positive During Hard Times

IMG_4281

As you know, there are times when life sucks.  And, believe it or not, that’s actually okay.  Life can’t be sunshine, roses and chocolate all the time.  Because, if it was, would that sunshine feel as wonderful?  Would the roses smell as sweet?  Well, I can tell you from experience, chocolate tastes fantastic no matter what is happening, but I’m sure you catch my drift.

When life is hard, take a breath – or twenty – or a hundred, and stand up and just deal with it.  Don’t put yourself down, don’t dwell on faulting someone (or yourself), just figure out a way to deal with it.  Focus your energy on doing whatever you can control to make life better, and do it!

IMG_4282

Advertisements

Never Make Yourself Smaller

IMG_4189

Don’t allow other people to make you smaller or “less than” what you are.  It’s so easy to make yourself smaller in order for someone else, who you love, to feel better about themselves.  After all we tell ourselves, it’s because we love them that we become smaller.  Why shouldn’t we help someone we love feel better about themselves?

However, it’s not up to us to become smaller, “less than”, to make someone else feel larger.  Our beliefs in ourselves matter also.  If someone insists that you need to be smaller, it’s a large indicator that they really don’t have your best interests at heart.  It’s not up to us to be “less than” so someone else can feel “more than”.  A true friend will celebrate who and what you are, not make you feel smaller.  Someone who professes to love you will never ask you to make yourself smaller.  No matter how difficult, be true to who you are.

8e99bc7a9e38a4791e78b44f66336399--cool-love-quotes-great-quotes

Eggshells and You

IMG_4080 Eggshells quote

I just wanted to post this quote I found for those of you who are dealing with hyper-critical family members.  One of the terrible things about being criticized for everything you do, is how it dismantles your sense of self.  Remember when someone is belittling you, it says more about them then it does you.  No matter how hard it may be, look within for your sense of self, stand tall, and even if you have to dance in the shadows, dance.

_dancer_in_the_dark_iii__by_rijama

 

Choices Do Exist

fe596fc1f2b5bdc41b39f6220fc0b3a8

With all the insanity and worry that’s been happening lately (school shootings, lost immigrant children, trade wars, White House issues, etc.), life seems to be way too overwhelming, and it’s too easy to become depressed over things that we really don’t have any control over.  As a matter of fact, there are a lot of things that we have no control over – our children/spouse’s actions, work issues, unexpected bills, etc.  So, how can we react when we’re depressed and overwhelmed?

It may sound too simple, but the only thing to do is to concentrate on what you can change.  I literally sign at least 50 petitions per week, and the number seems to keep on growing.  There is only so much that I can do, and petitions and letters to my congress people are just about the best thing I can accomplish.  I have no power (other than my vote/voice), so I try to use it every chance I get.  However, there is so much going on, and I can do so little.  This is just something that I have to realize that my power to make these kinds of changes is minimal, however, I keep doing what I can.

So, depression is a problem for me, and probably for a lot of people.  How do I handle it?  I try to spend time practicing gratitude (and, as I say myself, it is a practice).  And, finally, the last and best thing, is to follow the simple quote: “In a world where you can be anything, be kind.”  These are the words that I try to live by.  I’m not saying that I succeed all the time, but when I go out into the world I try to be as nice and friendly as I can.  One thing I don’t want to do is to make someone else’s life miserable.  So, I’m always trying to be as upbeat and friendly as I can manage.  Sometimes it’s easier than other times, but I’m always trying.  What are some things that you do?  Please share in the comments below.

il_570xN.1112764778_35cp

What Does “Home” Mean to You?

wall-quotes-vinyl-87

What does home mean to you?  Is the place that you live your home, or is your “real” home somewhere else?  For many people that may be the place where they grew up.  Other people find everything that the word home stands for in a place in nature – the woods, or the ocean.  For myself I feel that I’ve got two different homes.  The first is in nature – the ocean does it for me.  I could stay there forever, and at the risk of sounding insane, I hate to leave the ocean once I’ve actually gotten myself there.  I’ve always wanted to live as close as I can get to the ocean, but so far, I’ve got to make do with living about one and a half hours away.

My second “home” is my family (specifically, my daughter).  Whenever I’m with her I really do feel like I am home.  I’m sure that it’s the feeling of absolute love and trust that makes me feel this way.

famous-home-quotes-image-3609a9ca

To talk about my “actual” home, it isn’t really set-up in a way that I would prefer, but it is still home, since this is where I’ve raised my children.  We had “beach” parties in the family room in the middle of winter.  I sat on the floor in the hallway outside my children’s rooms and read them The Lord of the Rings, Narnia, and a host of other books for years.  We home schooled in the dining room, ate dinner together as a family every night in the kitchen, and watched movies in the living room.  It may not be fancy, but it’s still home.

Share your thoughts about “home” in the comments below.

Taking Care of Yourself

1e1b743da479e204b986f5979983a79f-us-quotes-good-quotes

The hardest thing to do is to invest in taking care of yourself.  And, by investing I don’t mean just money, but time and effort.  As a mother, ever since I gave birth, the majority of my life has been spent in taking care of my children.  I remember having to have the babies in the bathroom with me when taking a shower, since my children seemed to need only small catnaps both day and night.  Therefore, I was usually passed out on what available surface there was during these teeny tiny little “naps” (notice the quotes).  So, as they grew, and got to be teenagers who loved to sleep, I began to sleep a little later.  But, I’ve since found out that anything over 5 or 6 hours makes me feel like throwing up, so I’ve gotten used to just getting up when I first wake up (instead of trying to go back to sleep) in order to work out.

That’s the first thing I do on a daily basis for myself.  Other than that, it’s mostly an effort.  I’ve just recently started getting my hair cut at a salon after going for 5 or 6 years without a haircut.  Who needs a haircut when you always wear your hair in a bun?  Every time my appointment comes around, I have to force myself to go.  The excuses are varied – it’s raining, there is snow, I don’t really have the money…  Seriously, it’s not expensive to get your hair cut every two months.  I’ve recently bought myself some face masks but using them again is an issue.  I seem to be looking for the “right” time to do so.

a9dcd60b85c9b31ba372134d438a941b

Eating properly is another issue.  I buy lots of fruit every week but seem to think that if I eat an orange, there won’t be enough for someone (the mythical someone) else to enjoy.  Of course, there is plenty of fruit at the end of the week, but I still think that I can’t eat much of it.

Taking care of yourself is an important part of your health and your well-being.  What do you do on a daily/weekly basis to take care of yourself?  Do you find it difficult to make time for you?  Let me know in the comments below.

quote-go-back-and-take-care-of-yourself-your-body-needs-you-your-feelings-need-you-your-perceptions-nhat-hanh-146-55-67

 

Life Changes

chance-to-change-quote

There are as many ways to change your life as there are people. While one way will work for one person, it won’t work for another. Each of us is in charge of how our life goes, even when it doesn’t feel like that. Our reactions to what happens to us is often the only way we can change things. Each time something perceived as “bad” happens, we can control how we react. Just for an example, my sixty-year-old husband was laid off a few weeks ago. He could have decided that was it, and he wasn’t going to work anymore. That, of course would have been devastating, and we would have sunk into a mire of our own making. We owe a mortgage payment, a tractor payment, not to mention the usual utilities, etc. that go along with living. Instead he looked at where he was, and realized that being completely depressed wasn’t going to help. We needed to replace his phone, and laptop, since they were both company-owned. Which we did, immediately. Not so easy is replacing the company-owned truck, since our truck is a diesel-guzzling beast. However, we will be hopefully getting a certified pre-owned smaller truck with better gas-mileage soon. But, the best part of this was that because of the many contacts he has made over the years, he was hired with a new company within five days (including a weekend).

We were lucky. I know that we were lucky. Events turned out just right for us, and I know that they don’t turn out just right for everyone. My daughter graduated Magda Cum Laude from college in September and she is still looking for work. Luckily, she has her job creating content for a web-site that she’s had for a few years, but she would really like to find a full-time job. She looks, but the market is tough.

The big difference with this set-back was that we had an action plan, and I believe that action helped keep up my husband’s spirits. I didn’t let him sit around and be depressed. I helped him act in order to go forward. Sure, looking for a phone and laptop doesn’t sound like much, but it did keep him occupied. Having to find places to store all his tools, etc. that were in his truck also kept him busy. He went from working to sorting and storing, to planning and researching new phones and laptops. Action is necessary for change.

10bee80f7aa153cd813c3bf62c2ef731--funny-minion-pictures-minions-images

The end note is this: no matter how much you want to change, you have to put that want into action. Action is what changes you. Nothing else. So, decide how you want to change, and ACT!

BLQ-1-George-Bernard-Shaw-Create-your-best-life-for-the-blog-300x300