The Quarterback runs as fast as he can! He’s at the 40, he’s at the 30, at the 20…TOUCHDOWN!!!
Johns’ team just won the game and he couldn’t be happier! Sarah, on the other hand, just had her team beat. She drops her head in shame and exits the stadium. John continues his celebration out of the stadium along with the hundreds of other fans that are ecstatic that their team just brought home the win!
Let’s look at John and Sarah for a moment. He is happy, she is not. Why? Did the football game make one happy and one sad? No. The football game did nothing to affect their happiness, but their reaction to the outcome did. Had Sarah been a fan of the team that won then she too would be happy. It’s all in how you respond to the end result. Say, for example, you get caught by a red light. You huff and puff, and possibly curse, but then you watch in horror as the car that just went before you gets hit at the next intersection. You realize that could’ve easily been you, and now getting caught by the red light doesn’t seem so bad. Now let’s step back. It shouldn’t take a near death experience to teach you that getting caught by a red light really isn’t that bad. The next time a red light catches you think, “Hmm, there could be an accident up ahead but the few seconds that this light holds me may keep me from being involved.” Missing a bus, forgetting your keys, etc. are all things that may benefit you in the end; you just may not realize it. Let’s say your current relationship ends and you are devastated. However, three years down the road you meet that special someone that you know is your soulmate and you begin to wonder what you were doing with your ex to begin with! The loss of one relationship brought about a better, stronger one. At the time you didn’t see it that way, but it worked out in the end.
I try to approach all things with this mindset. I recently read a book that taught you to tell yourself that whatever is happening to you is the best possible thing that could happen to you. The universe has a way of lining things up to work out exactly as they should. Trust it, and realize that, although you may not see it now, things may work out in the end.
I love burning things. Absolutely love it. Now, let me explain.
By “things” I’m talking about incense sticks, candles, and sage smudging sticks. The other night I noticed I was feeling a little down. I looked around my room and realized it had become a little bit cluttered. The room felt stagnant and devoid of open, breathable air. I got up, opened my window, grabbed a box from the basement, packed away a few things, cleaned (vacuumed, dusted, etc) then decided to light a sage stick so that I could smudge my room. For those of you who aren’t familiar with “smudging” it is the act of using a bundle of sage (sometimes mixed with other things like cedar, sandalwood, lemon grass, etc.) in order to run off any negative energy in the room. You light it on fire, then blow it out allowing the smoke to fill the room. I use a leather bound group of feathers to “sweep” the smoke around the room. The smoke will cling to, and remove, any unwanted energy. You are literally smoking out the bad vibes. This may be all in my head, and it may not do a single thing except fill your room with a small amount of smoke, but it works for me.
I’m obsessed with Native American medicine, healing rituals, crystals, chakras, etc. so any chance I get to learn something about any of these things I’m all over it! Smudging makes me happy, crystal healing/protection, makes me happy, learning about alternative medicine makes me happy. All these things are things that I enjoy doing and learning about and they bring me some form of happiness. So why not light a stick of sage and walk around my room, waving the smoke with a feather? I discovered a year or so ago that I’m an Empath. I pick up on the energy of others, whether good or bad, and that energy will affect my own. Yes, for those of you who don’t understand or follow any of this you will probably stop reading my blog at this point. You probably think I’m nuts, and that’s okay. You’re entitled to your opinion 😉 I first realized that I’m an empathic person when I had to attend a funeral. Upon walking in I immediately felt the sadness, my chest became heavy, my lungs tightened, I was very uncomfortable and for the rest of the day I was extremely depressed. After the funeral I went home and went straight to bed. I was exhausted. I didn’t even really know the person who had passed, but the sad and negative energy that I picked up had literally saddened my heart and it truly affected the rest of my day. The next day I woke up and decided to do something about it. I smudged my room (and myself), drank some coffee, cleaned, played some upbeat music, and meditated. I told myself it’s okay to feel for the family and their loss, but there’s nothing I can do about it so I have to allow those feelings to pass. And they did. A few years ago the task of attending a funeral could’ve sent me into a deep depression for a few weeks, but the fact that I now know how to handle it means I can be there to comfort others in their time of need without allowing their energy to attack my own.
I’m sure some of you think I’m nuts, but I challenge you next time you’re feeling down to open a window, play some music, pray or meditate, smile, watch a funny movie, get moving/exercise, clean, and allow all the negative energy that’s getting you down to move on. Don’t let it stay there because the longer you do, the harder it will be to get rid of. Have a wonderful day!
Why, as a culture, are we so focused on negative news? The global news, local news, Facebook news, etc. is almost always something bad. It’s rare that you see happy and positive news going viral. I hardly ever watch the news, for this very reason, but I do try to keep up with what’s going on in the world. It seems the good stuff always flies under the radar, but the bad things seem to take a lead role in this production of life.
Just the other day I was watching the news about a man who had killed his 3 month old baby…..HIS 3 MONTH OLD BABY!!! What the hell is wrong with him?! I understand that stuff like that happens, and it’s the reality of the world we live in; however, I don’t feel that I need to clutter my mind with that type of negativity. The rest of the day I randomly thought of that poor baby and how sick that man must be in the head to do something like that. It made me nauseous. Those types of things just bring me down and remind me how twisted some people are in this world. Some of you may say that by avoiding this type of “news” I’m simply shielding myself and preventing myself from hearing about it, and you would be correct. Speaking from someone who has suffered from VERY severe depression, I have to take an active role in blocking any negativity that could possibly make my depression worse. This includes depressing news. If it is something that is really news worthy, and something I need to know about, then I can guarantee I’ll hear about it. There are a few apps that are on my phone that give you good news, science news, happy news, etc. and I love those apps! I guess, when it comes to “news”, I tend to lean towards articles versus breaking news. I’ve learned the breaking news is typically the worst. I also try not to share negative news on social media, as that means I’m participating in spreading that diseased news. Only happy news comes through me! 🙂
I challenge you guys to only share and read good news. Try to stay away from all the negative news about murder, suicide, bombing, etc. I promise it will make a difference! I’m not saying to avoid it all together, because being naive and blind about stuff gives the impression that you don’t care. I’m just saying to not actively seek out negative stuff.
Have a wonderful day!
This summer I decided to teach myself the beautiful art of tie-dye! I went all out buying several white shirts, several white bandanas, and even a cloth tote bag. I was determined to make the most beautiful tie-dye creations that anyone had ever seen. Now, let me preface by saying that I am quite OCD, so I wanted this tie-dye project to be absolutely perfect. That was my first mistake.
The shirts actually turned out pretty good, however, the bandanas and the tote not so much. Honestly, they looked pretty awful. Yes, I was upset, but then I remembered that tie-dye isn’t about perfect; it’s about having fun and using color to express yourself. Once I realized this the bandanas actually started to look halfway decent. The tote still looked terrible, so I just trashed it! HAHA! There were several spots on the bandana where I had put too much dye and it caused the colors to run together making either a black or brown muddy smudge. Other places I didn’t put enough dye and they were very light and there were even some white spots where I had missed putting the dye all together. I’m the type of person who always tries to see good out of every situation, and I also try to use each of those situations as a learning experience.
The bandana is kind of like my life. Some spots were lightly covered with dye. Those times in my life were the easy times. School was great, my health was great, everything was going well. Then there were other times, like the dark loaded down spots on the bandana, that were extremely difficult. Losing my aunt Lisa (who was like a second mother to me) was one of those times. Unable to cope I decided to just take a few extra pain pills before the funeral, which eventually led to an even darker place in my life. Those were the black spots on the bandana. There was absolutely no light. No good, and no positive in my life at that point. However, I sought out help and the white spots on the bandana started to show up again. I lost 135lbs, had finally beaten my depression (for the most part, and with the help of medication & therapy), had gained victory over my substance abuse, and was genuinely happy with my life. I was no longer living in a fog, and I can honestly say that I’m extremely pleased with where I am now. I’ve said before that if I had to go through all that again just to be where I am, I would. I wouldn’t like it, but I would do it.
How does your bandana look? Is it mostly dark? Covered with light spots? Regardless of how your bandana looks it’s still yours, and you shouldn’t just throw it away. Life may absolutely bog you down with tough times, but they won’t last forever. Life may also bless you with wonderful moments. Sometimes you have to wait out the storm in order to see the rainbow 😉 (As cliché as that is!)
I challenge you to try and look at all the situations in your life as a learning experience. Good or bad, try to find the “silver lining” and not just focus on the negative. There’s bound to be some positive moments in there somewhere!
A few years ago I was driving home when my car died and I came to a rolling stop in the middle of the road. Luckily, I was on a down hill slop so I coasted into an empty parking lot. Not sure what was going on I looked around and then realized it had been several days since I had gotten gas. Yes, my car had run out of gas. I was one of “those people” who had allowed their car to run on empty and eventually deplete the required fuel in order to run properly. I buried my head in my hands in shame and mentally beat myself up for being so stupid. It was almost 11pm and I had to do something I really dreaded…call my dad. I sat there for a few more minutes after finally picking up my phone and dialing home. Dad came to my rescue with a gas can and a stern talking to about not ignoring the gas light. Dad followed me home and I have never again allowed myself to run out of gas.
Sometimes, in life, we have these moments. We are literally running on empty and eventually we just stop all together. We sit, we cry, we beat ourselves up, but eventually we have to pick ourselves up and move forward. It’s not always an easy thing to do, and we may dread it and even put it off for as long as possible. However, if we stay where we stop then everything stops. It’s okay to ask for help, and it’s even okay to let someone take the wheel for a short period, but don’t quit.
I had gotten to the point where I had given up. I had quit and I didn’t care about continuing on. After several years of some pretty rough substance abuse, and very severe depression, I had finally realized that I wasn’t going to get better on my own. I had to ask for help, and I did. I got the help I needed and I was finally able to move on. There are still bumps in the road, and you may even run out of gas again later on, but just know that the possibility to move on is always an option. I still pass gas stations and, out of habit, will check my gas tank indicator to make sure I’m not running on empty. I know that, just because I fill up, it does mean my car will continue on forever. I have to check it and stay on top of things to make sure I don’t end up in the same situation as before. Our lives are the same way. Don’t give up just because you run out of gas, or hit a bump in the road. Keep going. You’re not alone!
I love watching “random acts of kindness” videos on YouTube, not only because it gives me ideas of things I can do, but because it actually restores my faith in humanity. It reminds me that not everyone out there is a murderer, thief, rapist, etc. When we turn on the news all we generally hear is bad stuff. It’s so depressing, and I’ve learned that it’s not good for my mental well-being to spend my time watching the news. I do have a news app on my phone that keeps me updated on the really important stuff, but that’s it. The only time that I ever watch the news is to see the weather, and I have an app on my phone for that as well 😉
I love good news and random acts of kindness, so I try my best to be that person to actually do the acts of kindness. If I can help one person, or make someones’ day then it’s definitely worth it! You never know what someone is going through, and they may be fighting a battle that has them dangling by their final thread. That person may be planning to go home and end their life, but your one small act of kindness may remind them that it’s not all bad. There are still some people in the world who care. So if you are feeling down today, or just haven’t heard it in a while, remember that I love you! I care that you’re in the world, and if you’re reading my blog right now that means that you are somewhat a part of my life.
I challenge you to be that person who makes a difference in someones’ life. It doesn’t have to be anything big and drastic. Maybe just pay for someones’ meal at the drive-thru behind you, or give a few bottles of cold water to a construction crew during the summer. Buy those packs of thank you cards (the ones that have like 20 in a pack) and write them out to the nurses at your local hospital. Yes, there will be a lot, but the work they do is incredible and they don’t always get thanked for what they do. I try my best to smile at people, make people laugh, give to someone in need, and send as many positive vibes to others as I can. Being kind doesn’t cost a single cent, so why not share it?! In the words of Ellen DeGeneres, “Be kind to one another!”