Wednesday, March 8, 2023
Wednesday, March 1, 2023
~ Kathleen Norris
My grandmother used to tell me that if I had one true friend in life, that was the ultimate blessing. My life, then, is truly blessed for I have several wonderful friends.
Aristotle wrote there are three kinds of friendship....
1. Friendship based on utility. This type of friendship changes according to circumstances. With the disappearance of the "usefulness" of this friendship, the friendship breaks up.
2. Friendship based on pleasure. These friendship are regulated by feelings, and the chief interest is in momentary pleasure. As affection changes, so does the friendship.
3. Perfect friendship is based on goodness and mutual knowledge and respect. These friends spend time with each other, contribute to the other's happiness and vice versa. Friendship of this kind is permanent.
The Roman philosopher Cicero believed that in order to have a true friendship with someone one must have complete honesty, virtue, and trust...and friends do things for each other without expectation of repayment.
Ask yourself, who is that one friend in your life who meets Cicero's standards? How much love do you carry in your heart for that person?
Now ask yourself, when was the last time you spent quality time with this friend? When is the last time yo spoke, rather than texted, IM, or communicated through social media?
If the answer is less than 3 days, pick up the phone. Call your friend. Hear his or her voice...and make a solid date to see one another within the next 10 days.
"There was a definite process by which one made people into friends, and it involved talking to them and listening to them for hours at a time." ~ Rebecca West
Have a joyful day everyone. And remember to live a flourishing life.
Wednesday, February 22, 2023
Wednesday, February 15, 2023
Wednesday, February 8, 2023
PS Want to learn more about changing your Habitudes? Check out my Live Online Talks!
Wednesday, February 1, 2023
Are you feeling challenged by obstacles? Are you clear as to what that "thing" is that is preventing or hindering your progress?
I view any obstacle that gets in my way as an opportunity to learn something new. It's not always an easy lesson. And sometimes the learning of the lesson takes time, patience, and reflection.
Changing the way we think about obstacles effects our success rate for as the Zen Buddhists say, "The obstacle is the path." To begin, we have to identify the type and source of the obstacle. Ask yourself: Do you view the obstacle metaphorically as a pebble, a rock, or a boulder? Is it external or internal?
External obstacles are those things outside of your control, such as environment, money, physical limitations. Yet, because they are external does not mean you should give up. What is always in your control is how you choose to respond (cognitively) not react (emotionally) to the challenge.
Internal obstacles are things such as fear, self-doubt, and what I call your Habitudes -- Patterns of thought and behavior affecting our attitudes towards life; habitual ways of thinking and acting that may or may not serve you.
Our beliefs and thoughts about a situation affect our reaction to it. The way we think about things can actually give things more meaning than they actually deserve. By giving meaning to things, we give them power in our lives. That's why I asked you to think metaphorically about the obstacle. What is its size? How easily, based on that size - pebble, rock, boulder -- can you remove it from your pathway?
"Obstacles don't have to stop you," said Michael Jordan. "If you run into a wall, don't turn around and give up. Figure out how to climb it, go through it, or work around it."
Wednesday, January 25, 2023
Most people upon hearing the words "serenity now!" recall the famous Seinfeld episode where Frank Costanza is advised to say "serenity now" aloud every time his blood pressure is in danger of going up. The episode's plot was inspired by real-life events of writer Steve Koren who, while driving with his arguing parents, was bewildered to hear his father shout "Serenity now" at the top of his lungs as part of a rage controlling exercise.
"Calmness of mind" James Allen wrote, "is one of the beautiful jewels of wisdom. It is the result of long and patient effort in self-control." Like Frank Costanza screaming "serenity now," a churning mind eventually may lead one to blow.
Often we become anxious about things we cannot change: the economy, the weather, our commute to work. Recognizing the difference between what we can and cannot change can help us live more peaceful and productive lives. Patience and perseverance leads to success in our endeavors.
The Serenity Prayer has special meaning to those who are often looking for peace during times of turmoil, despair, or uncertainty in their lives. Closely associated with Alcoholics Anonymous and other 12-step programs, the Serenity Prayer offers strength and calm into those seeking a more stable life. Written by theologian Reinhold Niebuhr, most people are familiar with this first stanza:
the courage to change the things I can;
- Living one day at a time
- Enjoying one moment at a time
- Accepting hardships as the pathway to peace
Forgive: . . . yourself first, then others.