Working on Yourself Helps Others

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This time of year can be very depressing for many people.  I tend to bounce between anxiety to happiness, sometimes in a matter of minutes.  So, it’s really important to focus on what you need, and how you treat others, especially if your own emotions are flying all over the place.  Slow down, take a breath and find the calmness in yourself.  When you do this, you can interact in a much more positive way with others.  Then, tackle all the additional things that need to be done.

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December Goals

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I should be honest and say that my main goal for this month is to live through it.  This is the most stressful time of year for me.  After many years of seemingly (actually) disappointing some members of my family no matter what I bought, I find that the holiday can be excruciating.  As the month goes on, my stress levels rise, and I get more and more anxious regarding the gifts that I’ve bought.   I over-think everything and cause myself much more stress than is healthy.  Needless to say, I’m going to try to nip this whole thing in the bud this year, and refuse to over-think it.  After all, the people whom I’m referring to are adults, and their behavior is immature, to say the least.

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I’m still working on finding affordable health care, and since the exchanges close on the 15th, this is my first priority.  I would really appreciate being able to go for an eye exam this year – I just know that I need a new prescription.  Also, after going for a year hoping that nothing terrible happened health-wise, I’d really like to at least know that I’ve got “good” insurance this year (“good” insurance is a relative term, don’t you think)?

Another goal is to decide what did and did not work for me over the last year, and figure out some plans on how to better achieve my goals for the coming year.  Also, further organization has to be done, so there will be more “stuff” taken to the swap-shop at the dump.

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What are your goals for the month?  Let me know in the comments below and we can cheer each other on!

 

 

 

November Reflections

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I don’t know about you, but November was not a fully productive month for me.  I re-injured my back, making my workouts more of a workout than I anticipated.  I attempted to do NaNoWriMo (national write a novel in a month).  I was aiming for finishing my dog book, which I did not accomplish.  However, I’ve gotten a start that I’m happy with, and intend to work on it more in the coming months.

I did sort and file most of my paperwork that’s been hanging around playing cards and drinking beer on my dining room table and credenza.  This only happened because I needed to use my dining room table for Thanksgiving – talk about a really good reason to do some organizing.  So, that was a good thing to finish.  And, to point out my state of disorganization, I thought that I had another week before Thanksgiving, so imagine my surprise when I realized I only had a few days to pull my dinner together!  That fact right there is another indication of how my month went.

One happy note is that I’ve started my Christmas shopping and can actually see the light at the end of the tunnel.  Hopefully there will not be any extreme panicking this year.  So, how did you do with your November goals?  Let me know in the comments below.

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Christmas is Coming!

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Thanksgiving is over and done.  The dishes have been washed and put away.  Those five pounds you’ve put on (I hope not!) will probably add up to a grand total of ten before the holidays are over.  And now, what’s going on?  Just the biggest sales event of the year…Christmas!  It seems that the only thing Christmas is for is extreme consumerism.

I don’t have cable, so I don’t really see all the commercials that most other people do.  I’m not inundated with “buy, buy, buy!” constantly.  I don’t even listen to the radio since I tend to listen to books when I’m cooking and cleaning, and I listen to CD’s while driving.  But even so, I’m also receiving all the advertisements in the mail and inserted in the paper on a daily basis.

You would think that Christmas was all about greed!  Seriously, that’s not what the whole idea behind Christmas is about.  Before you spend your money on “things” this year, consider what it is that truly makes life special.  Spend time with your loved ones.  Create new traditions that involve doing things together.  That’s what they’ll remember long after the new toys are lying broken on the floor.

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Changing Energy

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Lately life has been a struggle.  I’ve been moderately depressed for a while now, and have been thinking about how I can change my outlook.  I really want to make my home a peaceful place that is both organized and homey.  What I want is a place to recover from the outside world and find peace and a soothing atmosphere.  While this sounds like a wonderful idea, some of the less peaceful aspects of my life have to do with the people whom I live with.  When I came across the above quote, I realized that the only thing that I can actually do is to try to create the space I need/want, and see if it helps me.

I can’t change the energy that others emit, nor can I change their behavior/words/actions.  I can only worry about what I do, how I do it, and create the space that I need.  So, that’s what I’m going to do.  I know that one of my goals for the month of November was to organize and de-clutter my living room and dining room so that’s where I am going to start this process.

How do you create peace in your life?  Let me know if you have any ideas.  Let’s help to create peace one space at a time.

You Are in Charge of Your Own Happiness

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The above quote is so important in many ways.  From the time we are born we seek to please others.  As children when our parents were happy than we were happy.  Of course, pleasing others can be a wonderful thing.  The feelings of joy we get from bringing happiness to others is like no other.  But as with many things, this can be taken to the extreme thus causing us unhappiness while we seek to please another.  Once we start putting others happiness above our own happiness on a consistent basis, we’ve crossed the line into ignoring ourselves and putting ourselves last, if our own happiness even makes it onto our list.

True lasting happiness come from within.  No “other” can make us happy, just as we cannot bring true lasting happiness to another.  Look within to find your own happiness.

Repairing the World

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Last weekend I watched the wonderful documentary on Fred Rogers, Won’t You Be My Neighbor? (which I suggest that you watch also, since Fred Rogers was an extraordinary man).  While I was watching it, some of the words mentioned in regard to the mess that’s the U.S. right now were “Tikkun Olam” which I’d never heard of before.  The words were referenced with regard to the question ‘what can we do to help ourselves and the world right now’?  The response was “repair the world”.  I’m leaving a link below that better explains the background and original meaning of these words, but also emphasizes that the meaning that is usually associated with these words has to do with repairing the world by means of social justice and human responsibility toward fixing what is wrong with the world.

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While changing the entire world is a huge task, and one that most of us are unable to achieve, after watching Won’t You Be My Neighbor? I was struck by how much each one of us can change the world.  How, you might ask?  By changing the world we live in.  Of course, we can sign petitions, march in protest, vote and give money to causes that resonate with us.  We should do all that.  But there are also direct actions that we can take.  We can declutter and make our homes as peaceful as we can.  We can also work at a soup kitchen.  These actions aren’t either/or, remember.  We can treat everyone we see with kindness.  And, for those of us who have limited money, it can be the most direct way of repairing the world.  I hope that I can manage to create a better world right where I am.  Hope you are inspired to do the same.

 https://www.myjewishlearning.com/article/tikkun-olam-repairing-the-world/