Misunderstandings and miscommunication create more problems in the world than malice and wickedness. Does this explain some of the polarization between us?

Miscommunication and misunderstandings create more problems in the world than wickedness and malice. Does this explain some of the polarization between us?

Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

The worst distance between two people is misunderstanding. Unknown

We all make mistakes in life and some of them will impact our lives in big ways. Listening to Pastor Mark Hughes of Church of the Rock yesterday he told the story of twin brothers who were left their father’s hardware store. One day one of them sold an item for one dollar but he didn’t put it in the cash register he left it on the counter. When he came back to the front of the store the dollar was gone. He accused his brother of stealing it. The brother said, “I didn’t see a dollar on the front counter.”

This went on with each thinking they were right until they weren’t speaking to each other. They put tape down the middle of the store, put a cash register on each side of the store, and didn’t speak to each other for twenty years.

One day a man came into the store and said, “I’d like to speak to you two gentlemen. Twenty years ago, I was down and out and I saw a dollar on the counter and I took it. I’ve recently turned my life around and I’d like to make amends by giving you back your dollar.” He handed them a dollar. The two brothers embraced and cried the answer to the mystery now known, but they wasted twenty years.

On Dr. Phil the other day he had a couple on. The husband is accusing his wife of sleeping with three presidents, Obama, Trump, and Biden plus 97 other men. She says he is the only man she has ever been with. Dr. Phil said to the man, “I believe, you believe what you are saying. I also believe what your wife says is true.”

How do we handle things when we know for sure something is true and the other person is adamant we are wrong? Do we not speak to them for twenty years, get a divorce, or try to find an answer that makes sense?

When nails grow long, we cut nails not fingers. Similarly when misunderstandings grow up, cut your ego, not your relationships. Unknown

The problem in the hardware store was not so much the missing dollar as the brother’s refusal to believe his brother didn’t steal it. In the couple’s case, the wife is trying to get help for her delusional husband, who up until this point has been a good husband and father, they have a baby in the hospital with heart problems. She is hoping Dr. Phil and others can get to the root of his delusion and she can get her husband back.

That is an extreme case and of course, we all got a laugh when we heard he thinks she’s slept with three presidents which shows how delusional he is. But, we have many situations that may arise where we or someone else believe things, but they aren’t the way we think they are. We took offense to something that wasn’t meant. We heard or understood something that wasn’t meant the way we heard or understood it. We are willing to believe the worst instead of the best possible explanation.

How many relationships are ruined because of misunderstandings, misinterpretations of events, words, or situations? Even if we forgive someone for what we think they did, can they forgive us for thinking they did it?

Can we find dignity in what we know to be true even if people don’t believe we are virtuous, honest, and fair-minded? Can we not let our dignity get in the way of the relationship? If there is an answer can we look for it, can we at least be open to there being an explanation that isn’t just we are right and the other person is wrong?

 A single moment of misunderstanding is so poisonous, that it makes us forget the hundred lovable moments spent together within a minute. Unknown

Misunderstandings, if left unsolved, will push people so far apart that they might never come together again. Unknown

And I have again observed, my dear friend, in this trifling affair, that misunderstandings and neglect occasion more mischief in the world than even malice and wickedness. At all events, the two latter are of less frequent occurrence. Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Thank you for reading this post. I hope you enjoyed it. I hope you will come back and read some more. Have a blessed day filled with gratitude, joy, and love.

To subscribe, comment, see archives or categories of posts click on the picture and scroll to the end.

Thank you to everyone that reads my books. A special thank you to those who leave a review on Goodreads and Amazon. If you click on the Amazon link and purchase an item I receive a small percentage of the sale through the Amazon affiliate program.

Scammers and con artists. Could we all have a moment of weakness when we are susceptible to a scammer?

Could we all have a moment of weakness when we are susceptible to a scammer? Scammers and con artists.

Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

If it seems to good to be true, it probably is. Unknown

Tis the season of scammers. I did not get one hundred thousand dollars from the Bill and Melinda Gates foundation even if a scammer tells you I did, and by applying and paying fees one hundred thousand dollars will be delivered to your door.

The CRS Canadian Revenue Service (scammer) regularly calls telling me my social insurance number is being suspended and I must act now. Amazon (scammer) is calling to say a computer has just been purchased. Border security (scammer) is calling to say suspicious packages are arriving at the border under my name. I get calls from banks (scammers) I don’t have accounts with, and Bell (scammer) wants to lower my bill because I’m such a good customer.

Years ago I got a call from a girlfriend who wanted me to loan her money to pay the fees so she could collect the inheritance from someone overseas. I declined. My husband regularly receives emails that someone with his last name died without a will leaving a large estate my husband could claim as a relative and they would split the estate. We’ve had the Nigerian Prince fax.

We’ve watched Dr. Phil where people are cat-fished by people who never arrive but still keep reeling the person they are cat-fishing in. How many planes does your girlfriend/boyfriend have to miss before you realize they don’t exist? “I know, it was such a shame I couldn’t make the last plane but I’ll be sure to be on the next one. If you could just send a few more thousand dollars, you really are a good person, and you know I love you.”

My sister tells me someone she knew was at the bank sending money to a grandson who told her he got in trouble, please don’t tell my parents, but I really need help. A teller realized what was going on before the money was sent.

People must lie awake at night thinking up scams. They must scan the web for pictures of universally attractive people and think people would fall in love with this one. The whitest looking very attractive man talks with a foreign accent but that doesn’t give it away. He always needs money, even though he is very rich, and never arrives for in-person visits you’ve paid for. When do you start thinking he doesn’t exist? Is life so lonely and boring that the excitement of the scammer in your life is worth the price? The scammer is telling you lies, asking for more and more money, but it’s better than nothing. At least on Dr. Phil they never seem to want the truth. The scammer is filling a void in their life.

We’ve always been told if something is too good to be true, it probably is. We want to believe in fairy tales and fantastical stores like someone really thinks we are beautiful, irresistible, or a sudden large windfall has come into our life.

I tell myself I am a “Reallionaire.” I’m good with reality; I can accept life as it is. Would I be an easy mark for someone if I were lonely? If they whispered sweet nothings into my ear and told me things I wanted to hear would I pull out my checkbook or e transfer to keep those sweet nothings coming?

We laugh when we hear about it happening, but scammers are successful because they are tapping into our hopes, dreams, and fantasies. We spend money all the time on potions, and things that promise what they can’t deliver. There wouldn’t be bad plastic surgery if people didn’t believe a fantasy. People are looking for the magical potion, the fantastical idea, and true love.

The basis of any scam is telling people what they want to hear. If something sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Lee Child

Beauty and the Beast is a story as old as time, when we are young we might think we are the beauty, when we get older we might think we are the beast, and it is possible hot and beautiful could want us.

I hear about people divorcing in their later years and I wonder what are you thinking? Who do you think you are getting at this stage in life? Haven’t some of us had a good laugh over Jeff Bessos’ girlfriend drooling over Leo Decaprio? Isn’t there someone we all might drool over?

What if someone we would drool over called us up and was interested in us, and for just a few dollars we could live that fantasy? They would call us and whisper sweet nothings, tell us we are beautiful, they can’t wait to spend the rest of their lives with us, and to have sweet dreams, which we would, as we let the fantasy play over and over in our head. Someone wants us, someone loves us, and someone can see the beautiful, wonderful person that everyone else can’t see.

I can see the appeal of lies, beautiful lies. Real-life is often humdrum, but in our fantasies, anything can happen, when someone else is spinning that fantasy and knows exactly what to say to make our heart sing. Who would want that to stop? We buy lottery tickets for the dream, a fantasy we get to play every time we buy a ticket. Going on a first date is often about the fantasy which no living, breathing person can match so there isn’t a second date.

Beware of promises too good to be true. Scammers prey on our hopes, dreams, and fantasies.

So many girls, fall in love with the wrong guy simply because the wrong guy usually says all the right things. Unknown

Be wary of someone who has never failed, or seem to have no faults… Too good to be true usually is. Perfection hides something. Henry Cloud

Every mistake I’ve ever made started with “It’s too good to be true.” Unknown

Thank you for reading this post. I hope you enjoyed it. I hope you will come back and read some more. Have a blessed day filled with gratitude, joy, and love.

To subscribe, comment, see archives of posts, click on the picture, and scroll to the end.

Thank you to everyone that reads my books. A special thank you to those that leave a review on Goodreads and Amazon. If you purchase an item through the Amazon link I receive a small percentage of the sale through the Amazon affiliate program.

We think we know dogs, and we think we know people. Both can surprise and wound us.

We think we know people, and we think we know dogs. Both can surprise us.

Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

Dogs bark at what they cannot understand. Heraclitus

Today is Remembrance day! We owe a debt of gratitude to those who fought for freedom and still continue to fight for it.

There is a sad story here of a boy bit in the face by a dog. Why did the dog bite him? When I was a kid my Uncle bought a farm and with the farm came the dog and all the livestock. We would go over to his new place and play with this friendly black lab. One day my brothers and I were looking at what the old owners had put in a garbage pit. I picked up a pill bottle and bam he bit me in the face.

Dogs who bite back home at that time paid with their life. He was already dead by the time they told Mom, “We want to know if he had rabies.” He didn’t have rabies, he liked us kids and we had been over numerous times and played with him, but I touched something that was his old owner’s, and that is why I think he bit me. He couldn’t protect them, he could protect their stuff and he paid with his life.

What else can you do with a dog that has bitten a kid in the face? You can’t keep him and you can’t give him to another family. We later had a dog we gave too many chances to. He bit a woman who went to pet him when he was chained up. I’ve always been told never to go near a chained dog. It was a little bite, and we didn’t do anything. One day I took him for a walk and the neighbor stopped his truck for a chat. As I was standing at the side of the road, for no reason at all the dog bit the back of my leg above the knee.

It wasn’t a bad bite so we let that one go. Did I even tell Mom and Dad he bit me, I can’t remember. Then I was training him to be a sled dog, we were taking off from the top of the driveway when two neighbor kids turned into our driveway. He took off racing to the end of the driveway and bit the youngest kid on the hand. This was a pretty aggressive bite and the dog was put down. They say once a dog bites he’ll bite again, and this one did, and each bite was worse.

The kid who was bitten is worried about scars. I hope his face heals as well as my face did. There is no noticeable scar. No one has ever said to me, “What happened to your face?” There is some controversy over whether the dog is part “Pitbull.”  The sad story is the owners fought to get him back and have him not deemed a “Pitbull.” Now he has bitten a kid in the face. What will they do with him now?

My husband and I worried our Scottie would be too aggressive with our kid’s friends so when they were over he was in his room. He was a lovely dog but we don’t know what makes a dog bite. We trusted him with our kids, and our kids with him. Our little Cock-a-poo, Lulu, I don’t think she would bite, but she surprised us on Halloween chasing the Halloweeners that knocked on our door down the street.

She’s a strange little dog in that she still barks at our son-in-law even though my daughter and he have been married for over three years. She barks when any of us come in the house most of the time, but she barks if he comes upstairs, or when she hears him in the bathroom downstairs. He didn’t meet her when she first came to our house and perhaps he will always be an outsider in her mind. She treats my soon-to-be-daughter-in-law like she is the missing piece of the family when she comes over. She was there when we got her and went with us to pick her up. In Lulu’s mind, she is part of the family.

We think we know our dog, we think we know people, but both can surprise us.

If you pick up a starving dog and make him prosperous. He will not bite you. This is the principal difference between a dog and a man. Mark Twain

My goal in life is to be as good as the person my dog already thinks I am. Unknown

Barking dogs seldom bite. Don’t be afraid of dogs that bark or people that threaten you “saying, they will do something bad to you” – in both cases they rarely take action. English Proverb

Thank you for reading this post. I hope you enjoyed it. I hope you will come back and read some more. Have a blessed day filled with gratitude, joy, and love.

To subscribe, comment, see archives or categories of posts click on the picture and scroll to the end.

Thank you to those who read my books. A special thank you to those who leave a review on Goodreads and Amazon. If you click on the Amazon link and purchase an item I receive a small percentage of the sale through the Amazon affiliate program.

The simple life, are we living it? What makes life simple?

What makes life simple? The simple life, are we living it?

Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

My formula for living is quite simple. I get up in the morning and I go to bed at night. In between I occupy myself as best I can. Cary Grant

When do we know we need to go in a new direction, rework, regroup, or re-imagine something? It happened to me yesterday when my daughter said, “I have a few ideas for your children’s book.” My ears perked up and when she said one of the books children love has a jingle, it’s simple and the children love it.

Simple should be easy but it isn’t. We look at children’s books and think anyone could do that. Anyone can but it doesn’t mean it will be easy to create a children’s book children love.

The children’s book I want to write does not have a jingle – yet. It does not rhyme, it is not simple and would not enthrall children? Could it become a concept that might enthrall children? Can it rhyme or have a jingle? Can it be simple?

The answer to every one of those questions is yes. Getting to simple may take a lot more work than I thought it would. It may also be a lot more fun.

Does it work the same way in our lives? Is it true the simpler our lives are the more joy and beauty we experience? We may think moving to the country and raising our own food is part of the simple life. The simplest way to have a hamburger is to pull up to the restaurant and order one. If we are going to raise the calf that becomes the burger we needed to start a couple of years ago. What about the bun, we need to grow the wheat. What about the yeast? Living on our own and providing everything for ourselves is not simple.

Going to a grocery store and buying what we need is much simpler. Could most of us build ourselves a car for transportation? We can buy one which is a simple way of getting a car.

Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated. Confucius

My brother has hatched some chicks and when I last talked to him he had 4 live chicks which cost about $250.00 each if he calculated all costs that went into the hatch. They are a good way off from being able to lay eggs for his breakfast.

Self-sufficiency may be a laudable goal but it is not simple to be self-sufficient. Money is what makes our life simple. We have something we can exchange that we agree on the value of. How hard would it be for me to get one of my brother’s chickens without money? What is a chicken worth? What do I produce that my brother wants? What if he wanted to trade his chickens for a cow so he could eat beef and not just chicken? How many chickens is one cow worth? How do you save up chickens?

Money lets us put a price on everything. We trade our time at our job or business for money that lets us pick and choose what we spend it on. We can save it to spend later. We can invest it into assets that will appreciate.

The chicks might be down to one and that makes it a thousand-dollar chick. We don’t always make money in our enterprises. But, if we don’t try and fail how do we learn to do things and get better?

Other people’s blood, sweat, tears, and enterprise have made my life simple. I have many things I couldn’t produce myself that with a little money I can buy. Can life get much simpler than that?

My sister-in-law is buying six-week-old chicks for twenty dollars. Farm fresh eggs are a real treat, but it is simpler to stop at the store and buy my eggs.

Simple is a concept we don’t understand very well. Farming is not simple; living in a city is simple. Exchanging money for anything is a simple exchange. Creating that thing is not simple. Working at a job doing one thing is simple. Going out for a coffee and a hamburger is simple. Growing the coffee and all the ingredients to make that hamburger is not simple.

If we are lucky enough to go to a store and buy anything, someone produced it. We are lucky to live in a country where we can buy the things we need and want.

What does a simple life look like? I think I’m living it and as long as I can pay for what I need and what I want how could it become much simpler?

There is no power on earth that can neutralize the influence of a high, simple, and useful life. Booker T. Washington

Simplicity is complex. It’s never simple to keep things simple. Simple solutions require the most advanced thinking. Richie Norton

 Happiness is not something ready-made. It comes from your own actions. Dalai Lama

Thank you for reading this post. I hope you enjoyed it. I hope you will come back and read some more. Have a blessed day filled with gratitude, joy, and love.

To subscribe, comment, see archives or categories of posts click on the picture and scroll to the end. Please subscribe, comment, and share.

Thank you to everyone that reads my book. A special thank you to those who leave a review on Amazon and Goodreads. If you click on the picture and purchase an item through the Amazon link I receive a small percentage of the sale through the affiliate program.

Can anger motivate us to do better or ruin our lives? Can we harness anger as fuel for a better life instead of ending up in bondage and suffering?

Can we harness anger as fuel for a better life instead of ending up in bondage and suffering? Can anger motivate us to do better or ruin our lives?

Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

Fear is the path to the dark side. Fear leads to anger. Anger leads to hate. Hate leads to suffering. Yoda

Is anger having an impact on our lives? Is it fear that leads to anger? Fear and anger are brought into being during stressful, hostile, or trying events. It’s no wonder our anger levels may be heightened. Is this not one of the angriest, most trying, and hostile times we’ve gone through? If our anger fuels us to change things like in Jim Rohn’s video The Day that Changed Your Life our anger is not only justified but helpful as it propels us to say “Never Again.” His “Never Again” was to never again be too poor to… He became a part-time multi-level marketing distributor and elevated himself and his family.

Is the point of anger to propel us to change something, or are we getting angry because our expectations are not being met? Are these expectations possible to be met? If we get angry because our dog barks or worse yet someone else’s dog barks we know dogs will bark and expecting them not to is futile.

We may be upset that we have lost control of a situation. In most situations, our degree of control especially if other people are involved is much less than we’d like.  Don’t we feel more powerful when we are angry? Aren’t we more dangerous when we are angry? Aren’t we all scared of an angry person because we don’t know what they will do? Sometimes we let our anger get the best of us and we create situations that wouldn’t have happened if we weren’t angry. If we don’t have self-control our anger can lead us down a dangerous path.

If we let worry, fear, and anger control our lives it will probably not go well. People will make us angry but we can learn to control our reaction. In “Taking Charge of Anger” W. Robert Nay Ph.D. tells us there are five components to every anger episode: trigger, thoughts, feelings, anger expression, and outcome. He says we can break our anger down into these five components and he suggests we keep an anger journal so we can see how often we get angry, and we can take charge of our anger. When we start our anger journal we may wonder if “that” really should go in the journal?

Happiness: The emotion that puts your face in motion. Fear: The emotion that puts your legs in motion. Anger: The emotion that puts your fist in motion. Lesson: Don’t be afraid or angry and you won’t have to run and fight. Unknown

Awareness of our own triggers, behavior, thoughts, and feelings is what we are after. Once we become aware we can do something about it. Don’t we all laugh at the snickers commercials where someone is hungry and angry? We may find we are also dealing with a shortened fuse when hungry.

When I was driving my kids somewhere and they weren’t little anymore I would go sit in the truck waiting for them so I didn’t get angry watching them dawdle. How many families start out a long-planned outing or vacation in an angry mood because someone thinks everyone should be ready to leave before they are?

We may be worried about things and get angry, but if the anger isn’t helpful because it doesn’t propel us to action to change things, or it is things we cannot change we may need to get back to dealing within our circle of influence. We can waste our energy being mad at things we cannot change instead of putting that energy into things we can do and can change.

I’ve started my anger journal and will learn a few things. I hope to learn what are my triggers, thoughts, feelings, anger expression, and outcome. Maybe like Jim Rohn, I can use anger to fuel changes in my life that need to change. Maybe I’ll find most of my anger episodes are over things I have no control over and I need to put my attention back into my circle of influence.

Speak when you are angry and you will make the best speech you will ever regret. Ambrose Bierce

If one lets fear or hate or anger take possession of the mind, they become self-forged chains. Helen Gahagan Douglas

If you are patient in one moment of anger, you will escape a hundred days of sorrow. Chinese Proverb

Thank you for reading this post. I hope you enjoyed it. I hope you will come back and read some more. Have a blessed day filled with gratitude, joy, and love.

To subscribe, comment, see archives or categories of posts click on the picture, and scroll to the end. Please subscribe, comment, and share.

If you purchase an item through the Amazon link I receive a small percentage of the sale through the Amazon affiliate program.

See this image

Taking Charge of Anger, Second Edition: Six Steps to Asserting Yourself without Losing Control Paperback – March 6 2012

by W. Robert Nay  (Author)4.4 out of 5 stars 29 ratings

See all 2 images

Secrets and Silence: What if your biggest secret became public? Paperback – Large Print, Aug. 29 2020

by Belynda Wilson Thomas  (Author)5.0 out of 5 stars 2 ratings

Seeking to understand others instead of seeking to be understood.

Seeking to be understood instead of seeking to understand others.

Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

Most people do not listen with the intent to understand, they listen with the intent to reply. Stephen R. Covey

We have a problem with listening in our society it seems to me. We don’t understand people who think differently from ourselves because a lot of the time we don’t acknowledge they are thinking at all.

Sometimes instead of listening, I find myself just waiting until I can speak again. That isn’t really a conversation, it’s two monologues, and we get more entrenched in believing the merits of our side.

Do many of the answers to living in a civilized society lie in the middle ground? Where has the middle ground gone? Those trying to live in the middle seem to be straddling a chasm getting ever wider.

We can’t even agree on some basic things like when life starts, sex and gender, and if there might be some benefits to both shared values, beliefs, and multicultural ones. We don’t agree on the rules a great society is built on. We don’t agree on the merits of a good leader, or what makes someone a bad leader. We don’t agree on religion, or if there should even be religion.     

We can’t seem to have civil discussions because some people have deemed what the politically correct ideas to hold are, and even if we fall in line on what is politically correct in some areas, probably few of us fall in line with what everyone wants to call politically correct. The list of what we can’t say is growing ever longer and someone is waiting to catch us with a “Gotcha”.

How do we square those who feel the state intervenes too much in people’s lives and those who want more intervention?

Most of the successful people I’ve known are the ones who do more listening than talking. Bernard M. Baruch

Don’t we notice when we buy a car or are looking at a car that the car we want is everywhere? What if we were looking for opportunities, would we see them everywhere? We have opportunities staring us in the face. Amazon would have published my book in 2012 when I first started writing it. It is only in 2020 that I put it out into the world. Mom got the first copy in 2016 and that wasn’t my first draft. What opportunities have I lost by waiting so long? The list of investments that could have been made over my lifetime but weren’t, is long. If I look over my life the string of opportunities I have not availed myself of is a long list. Am I the only one that hasn’t availed themselves of the opportunities that presented? If I had been a better listener and acted on advice I was given…

Have any of us seen someone else start the business we thought of, or doing the thing we were advised to do? Opportunities are all around us but are we seeing them? People are all around us who will share the way they see life if we’ll listen long enough for them to tell us, and not just be waiting for our turn to speak, or interrupting them as they speak.

We were given two ears and one mouth. I for one know I need to seek first to understand before seeking to be understood. It isn’t easy, but then isn’t looking for easy one of the problems we have in our life?

It takes a great man to be a good listener. Calvin Coolidge

There’s a lot of difference between listening and hearing. G. K. Chesterton

It’s not at all hard to understand a person; it’s only hard to listen without bias. Criss Jami

Thank you for reading this post. I hope you enjoyed it. I hope you will come back and read some more. Have a blessed day filled with gratitude, joy, and love.

To subscribe, comment, see archives or categories of posts click on the picture, and scroll to the end.

If you purchase an item through the Amazon link I receive a small percentage of the sale through the Amazon affiliate program.

See all 2 images

Listening Well: The Art of Empathic Understanding Paperback – Jan. 3 2018

by William R. Miller  (Author, Contributor)4.8 out of 5 stars 71 ratings

See all 2 images

Secrets and Silence: What if your biggest secret became public? Paperback – Large Print, Aug. 29 2020

by Belynda Wilson Thomas  (Author)5.0 out of 5 stars 2 ratings


Are we focusing on what is wrong or what is right? Are we asking for what we want or focusing on what we don’t want?

Are we asking for what we want or focusing on what we don't want? Focusing on what is wrong or what is right?

Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

Our focus is our future and what we focus on will multiply in our life. David Denotaris

This week a funny thing happened. The Eforce (old exercise machine) I started using when the gym closed started making a noise that was more than creaks, squeaks, and squawks it had been making. It sounded like it was coming from the bottom where it glides along a track. One side did not feel right and when my husband looked at it he brought out a part of the bearing. It’s an old machine that is not sold anymore and we couldn’t figure out how to install new bearings.

Kijiji to the rescue. My husband found another Eforce on sale for fifteen dollars within driving distance. We picked it up and I am able to do my morning workout. A little can of lubricant (not WD40) seems to be helping with the squeaks and squawks and the bearings seem to be in good shape.

When we focus on what we want do we often get it? Is this part of our problem in life, we don’t know what we want. Do we focus on what we don’t want instead of deciding what we do want and going after it? When we focus on what we don’t want do we often get more of it? It is easy to think we don’t have enough, things aren’t working out, and we aren’t being treated right. What if what we need is an attitude adjustment? What if we need to focus on the good, the beautiful, the positive, and be grateful for what we have in our life.

It is easy to pick ourselves and other people apart because of imperfections, but what about what is good about other people and ourselves? Things happen every day that can make us unhappy if we focus on them, but things also happen every day that can bring us joy. We can be upset with our partners because of something insensitive they said, a look that spoke volumes or what we thought was inconsiderate. Can we instead think about all the things they do to make our lives better?

We can always choose to perceive things differently. You can focus on what’s wrong in your life, or you can focus on what’s right. Marianne Williamson

My husband found my new Eforce machine on Kijiji. He messaged the owner and set up the appointment to pick it up. Yesterday we drove to a few stores to find a spray lubricant that is supposed to help with the creaks, squeaks, and squawks.

It may seem like we are not trying to make things better when we say we focus on the positive like we are ignoring problems that need to be fixed and dealt with. I am not saying we don’t have to fix situations in our lives, organizations, or the world. What I am saying is if we focus only on what is wrong, we may miss what is right and may get so caught up in trying to fix what is wrong that we dismantle what is good in our lives.

This happens in marriages when people get disillusioned and give up on relationships that were actually working and go looking for more perfect relationships that might not exist.

What if the only thing that really bothers us about our partner is they have ideas about life and what would fix things we don’t agree with. Some people think the state can fix things, and other people think we as individuals need to take more responsibility for our lives. Who is right? These differences of opinion can ruin relationships but do we need to agree to disagree? In a democracy, the majority will decide which direction is taken.

We are living in a time when we are focusing on what people do that is wrong and people will do things that are wrong sometimes even with the best of intentions. There are also many things they do that are right. People are flawed individuals and someone may do the most heroic thing and save lives but also hurt someone because of misjudging them and making wrong assumptions.

My mother always said there is so much bad in the best of us, and so much good in the worst of us, that who are we to judge? Can we look for the best in ourselves and others but also deal with the worst when it shows up?

What we see depends mainly on what we look for. John Lubbock

Make the decision to talk about your blessings more than your problems. Whatever you focus on expands! Unknown

Remember you never have to apologize for feeling however you feel, but words and actions have consequences. Choose them carefully. Lisa Prosen

Thank you for reading this post. I hope you enjoyed it. I hope you will come back and read some more. Have a blessed day filled with gratitude, joy, and love.

To subscribe, comment, see archives or categories of posts click on the picture, and scroll to the end. Please subscribe, comment, and share.

If you purchase an item through the Amazon link I receive a small percentage of the sale through the Amazon affiliate program.

Crucial Conversations: Tools for Talking When Stakes Are High, Second Edition

Audible SampleAudible Sample

Crucial Conversations: Tools for Talking When Stakes Are High, Second Edition  Audible Audiobook – Unabridged

Kerry Patterson (Author), Joseph Grenny (Narrator), McGraw-Hill Education (Publisher)4.6 out of 5 stars 2,183 ratings


 See all 15 formats and editions

We think we know, but we don’t know what we don’t know.

We think we know, but we don't know what we don't know.

Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

Before you assume, learn the facts. Before you judge, understand why. Before you hurt someone, feel. Before you speak, think. Unknown

Last night I watched a TV program, W5. A trial thirty years ago where a woman was accused of leaving her baby in the snow and was charged with murder was being revisited. She went to the bank with her older son and left the sleeping baby in the car. When she got back he was gone. She called the police.

That night she had a dream her baby was in the snow in the woods. Her sister in law encouraged her to call the police and tell them her dream. It seems the police officer concluded at that moment she would now show them where she put the baby. The police officer drove around and she told him to drive down a street where they got out of the car and after walking a short way she thought she saw something blue through the trees. Her son’s snowsuit was blue. There he was about four meters into the woods.

The baby was assumed dead. The police officer said he knows what a dead body looks like. A renowned pathologist said the baby had been dead about 27 hours which put him in the snow an hour before he was reported missing. This pathologist’s testimony was discredited because he had two stories that didn’t match. (This pathologist was later discredited in many other cases and parents who went to prison because of his testimony have been exonerated.) Another renowned pathologist is brought in, she says the baby was not likely dead at the time he was found, he did not have the tissue damage that would have occurred if he was in the snow for 27 hours. In cases of hypothermia, it is not evident when someone is dead until the body is warm.

The defense lawyers came up with a likely scenario of what happened and the jury found the mother not guilty and stayed and hugged her after the trial and some have kept in contact with her. There was no follow up on the defense lawyer’s theory of what happened. The case is being looked into again now after thirty years.

The moral of this horrible story is we think we know more than we know. The police officer thought for sure the baby was dead but had he been taken to the hospital immediately may have survived.

People will question all good things they hear about you but believe all the bad without a second thought. Unknown

We assume we know things we don’t know. We assume motive and once we have made our assumptions we don’t seem to look for other answers. We have many situations that happen where we need to ask questions. Why are certain things happening when some people encounter police? What are the behaviors that make each side afraid of the other leading to bad outcomes? Sometimes the simple answer that we jump to is not the right answer even though in our own mind it ticks off all the boxes.

For the police officer, the mother’s dream made her guilty. It seemed he questioned nothing further than that and because he knew when the child was reported missing the child had to be in the snow about 27 hours and after that amount of time would for sure be dead. Had he not thought he knew how long the baby was in the snow, the baby may still be alive.

What do we know for sure that we need to question further? What questions do we need to ask? Why do seemingly insignificant situations end so badly for some? Why do worse situations not end badly for others? Are we asking questions or are we jumping to conclusions because we assume bad intentions because of bad outcomes?

Mind is a machine for jumping to conclusions. Daniel Kahneman

You jump to conclusion, what an illusion to assume you know without the facts, even a coin has two sides to the equation. Wam Zed

In the absence of information, we jump to the worst conclusions. Myra Kassin

Thank you for reading this post. I hope you enjoyed it. I hope you will come back and read some more. Have a blessed day filled with gratitude, joy, and love.

To subscribe, comment, see archives or categories of posts click on the picture, and scroll to the end. Please subscribe, comment, and share.

If you purchase an item through the Amazon link I receive a small percentage of the sale through the Amazon affiliate program.

See this image

Thinking, Fast and Slow Paperback – April 2 2013

by Daniel Kahneman (Author)4.5 out of 5 stars 6,835 ratings



Facing our unmet expectations. Are we expecting perfection in an imperfect world?

Are we expecting perfection in an imperfect world? Facing our unmet expectations.

Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

The person who is brutally honest enjoys the brutality quite as much as the honesty. Possibly more. Richard J. Needham

How do we focus on what we want in life when what we don’t want in life is where we put our energy? How do we not put our energy on what we don’t want when that consumes us?

Counting our blessings is what we are told to do. Our blessings outnumber our problems and yet our problems fill our minds and grow and morph as we continually think about them.

People tell us about bad things happening as if that is all that is happening. It is easy to judge someone by their worst decision, their worst action, and their worst outcome. The sum of someone’s life is neither the best nor the worst of what they have done but the sum total of their life.

Police departments are under scrutiny right now. Minimizing the problems with policing is not what most people are trying to do. We need police and the areas where problems with police occur the most often are also where police are needed the most. It is these areas where police are the first line of help when people don’t know who to turn to except the police.

Is it the case that the more contact we have with law enforcement the more likely we are to have a bad outcome? Part of the problem may be marginalized areas are under scrutiny the rest of us aren’t under. No one is perfect but do people in poor areas live under a level of scrutiny the rest of us don’t live under. Do they live under this with child protective services, policing, and drug enforcement?

The anger and the brutality against everything can readily from one hour to the next be transformed into its opposite. Thomas Bernhard

Is part of the problem over policing? Is another part of the problem that calling the police is used as a weapon against people who are scared of having the police called on them? Is, “I’ll call the police on you,” a threat used often and to the detriment of communities? Is it something people use against others to make themselves feel more powerful?

It seems to me many of the situations we see with bad outcomes are people calling the police on someone often over small things. Once things are set in motion and people authorized to use force against us confront us situations can get out of hand.

People do not always do the right thing. Police officers are people. We expect collateral damage in wars, we don’t like it but we accept it. Is part of what we have to accept with policing is things will get out of control, situations will escalate, and decisions resulting in death will result?  Even though everyone will agree when looking at the videos different decisions should have been made the outcome of that bad decision is irreversible.

We can use labels that may or may not apply; we can call it many things but what if it’s really a bad decision that ended badly for all concerned?

If those who make bad decisions are held accountable and prosecuted is that the most we can ask for and expect?

We may have expectations that truth, justice, and good decisions should always prevail. Is dealing with unmet expectations a hard truth we have to deal with in life?

No one’s pro-police brutality. Kenya Barris

I encountered among my comrades the most varied human traits, from frankness to reserve, from goodness to uprightness and kindness, to brutality and baseness. Georg Brandes

I see myself capable of arrogance and brutality… That’s a fierce thing, to discover within yourself that which you despised the most in others. George Stevens

Thank you for reading this post. I hope you enjoyed it. I hope you will come back and read some more. Have a blessed day filled with gratitude, joy, and love.

To subscribe, comment, see archives or categories of posts click on the picture, and scroll to the end. Please subscribe, comment, and share.

If you purchase an item through the Amazon link I receive a small percentage of the sale through the Amazon affiliate program.

Never Split the Difference: Negotiating as if Your Life Depended on It

Audible SampleAudible Sample

Never Split the Difference: Negotiating as if Your Life Depended on It  Audible Audiobook – Unabridged

Chris Voss (Author), Michael Kramer (Narrator), HarperAudio (Publisher)4.7 out of 5 stars 4,331 ratingsAmazon Charts #9 this week

Being a job-giver is better than being a job-seeker. Why has profit become a dirty word?

Why has profit become a dirty word? Being a job-giver is better than being a job-seeker.

Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

Young people should think in a different way – they should be job-givers, not job-seekers. Muhammad Yunus

Yesterday I saw a YouTube video by Alina McCloud in it she profiled a small town in Saskatchewan with her dad a Saskatchewan farmer. In a later video she talked with her dad about the reality of farming in Saskatchewan.

Being a Saskatchewan farm girl myself it brought tears to my eyes. We all need to remember we may need a doctor, dentist, lawyer, or police officer in our lives occasionally but we need farmers every day. If we ate today we need to thank a farmer.

When we go to the grocery store with its array of beautiful fruits, vegetables, meats, cereals, and breads it all started on a farm. All that food from all over the world came from farmers working every day to feed us. Small independent farms are disappearing as larger operations take over. Machinery is expensive, the land is expensive, it makes sense farms need to become larger operations to make money. Farmers can’t feed us if they don’t make money. No business can operate at a loss. We may want bargains but we need to beware of the price of some of our bargains.

The other week a cattle rancher in America was saying he was selling his beef for $900.00 that cost $1200.00 to get ready for sale. “We can’t keep doing this, if we are going to continue to feed people we have to do it at a profit.”

Profit is a by-product of work; happiness is its chief product. Henry Ford

Profit is both the reward for successes and the incentive for further action. Without profit none of us have a job, and worse yet we eventually will not have food. When did making a profit get to be a bad thing? Research tells us that workers who work for non-profits often make more money than people who work for organizations making a profit. How is this even possible? Is it because many of the costs of non-profits are paid for by subsidies from taxpayers who are working in the companies that make a profit?

Where did we get the crazy notion that making a profit so we can have a well-organized company is wrong? For-profit child care centers are becoming a thing of the past. Why, and what do they mean by not for profit? No one is doing work for free. The expenses still have to be paid, workers have to be paid, and rent has to be paid. Why, is getting an exorbitant salary as the head of a non-profit, often higher than what an owner of a for-profit company of the same kind would get, better?

Do we need to think about encouraging more people to start their own businesses and to quit thinking about profit as a dirty word? Is it better to be a job-giver than a job-seeker and is this what we should be encouraging our children to try and do?

I believe in capitalism. I need to make a profit, but I would like to do it with ethics, dignity, morals. It’s my dream. Brunello Cucinelli

To get profit without risk, experience without danger, and reward without work is as impossible as it is to live without being born. A.P. Gouthey

The substance of the eminent Socialist gentleman’s speech is that making a profit is a sin, but it is my belief that the real sin is taking a loss. Winston Churchill

Thank you for reading this post. I hope you enjoyed it. I hope you will come back and read some more. Have a blessed day filled with gratitude, joy, and love.

To subscribe, comment, see archives or categories of posts click on the picture, and scroll to the end. Please subscribe, comment, and share.

If you purchase an item through the Amazon link I receive a small percentage of the sale through the Amazon affiliate program.

The Price of a Bargain: The Quest for Cheap and the Death of Globalization Paperback – Oct. 19 2010

by Gordon Laird (Author)5.0 out of 5 stars 1 rating