Are we enjoying fall splendor? Can we be glad and enjoy what is here before us? If we enjoy the seasons, isn’t that enjoying our lives?

Can we be glad and enjoy what is here before us? If we enjoy the seasons, isn't that enjoying our lives? Are we enjoying fall splendor?

Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

Don’t be concerned about being disloyal to your pain by being joyous. Pir Vilayat Imayat Khan

Fall has arrived in all it’s splendor. Another season to enjoy and be grateful for. If we enjoy the gifts each season brings we can live grateful and happy lives. We have seasons in the year and seasons in our life we need to embrace.

Today my role at Toastmasters is to give the thought of the day. Our theme is Fall Fun. When we get over the idea that summer is over we can embrace fall with its harvest of bounty, colorful leaves, crisp mornings, and the sense of gratitude that permeates fall. The harvest is over or nearly over, nature is ready for rest.

The last tomatoes will get picked this week in preparation for the frost. Drives in the country to experience the splendor of the fall colors may be on our to-do list. We are thankful for the bounty and beauty of nature.

There are so many fun things to do in the fall. We can go apple picking, visit a pumpkin patch, get lost in a corn maze, go for a hayride, take a hike, collect colorful fall leaves, visit a fall fair, take a drive in the country, take a balloon ride to see the colors from above.

Enjoy the little things, for one day you may look back and realize they were the big things. Robert Brault

We can try our hand at preserving food or baking a pumpkin or apple pies. There are festivals to attend like Ontario’s  Butter Tart Tour, Soupfest, cranberry harvest, grape and wine festivals, Oktoberfest which is Canada’s greatest Bavarian festival. There are festivals for the meat-eaters and vegans, writers and readers, hikers and dancers.

Fall is a time of celebration and gratitude for the beauty and bounty in our lives. We wake up to cool mornings thankful for the comfort of our homes. Summer clothes are giving way to fall sweaters, jackets and boots are coming out of the closet. For many, fall is a more comfortable season. Shopping is a fun activity as we add to our fall wardrobe. People watching is fun as we sit and enjoy the day.

When we make the best of what our seasons offer, we make the best of our lives. We can lament that summer is over, or we can embrace fall. Isn’t enjoying what is before us always better than complaining about what is past?

Can we enjoy what fall has to offer, have fun, celebrate the bounty and beauty of nature, and be grateful and thankful for all we have in our lives?

There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle. Albert Einstein

Thankfulness is the beginning of gratitude. Gratitude is the completion of thankfulness. Thankfulness may consist merely of words. Gratitude is shown in acts. Henri Frederic Amiel

Reflect upon your present blessings, of which every man has plenty; not upon your past misfortunes, of which all men have some. Charles Dickens

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Living Life as a Thank You: The Transformative Power of Daily Gratitude Paperback – Oct 1 2009

by Nina Lesowitz (Author), Mary Beth Sammons (Author) 4.5 out of 5 stars 51 ratings

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Changing ourselves, changing the world. One change at a time. Are we making the changes we want to see?

Are we making the changes we want to see? One change at a time. Changing ourselves, changing the world.

Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, ‘I have lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.’ You must do the thing you think you cannot do. Eleanor Roosevelt

Four years ago today I took the three-week vegan challenge my son challenged me to. I didn’t think I could do it. Give up my cream with a little coffee. Somehow I drank my coffee half hot water, half coffee. I did not become a vegan, I have never called myself vegan even though I was pretty strict at the beginning of the whole food plant-based starch solution eating plan.

I was strict because I thought it was easy to revert back to old ways of eating. The first three weeks of the vegan challenge I felt good so I extended it to six months. Still feeling good and losing some weight while eating as much rice, potatoes, beans, etc as I wanted I kept it up. I already knew from my days of food combining that starch and fat are a recipe for putting on weight. Starch without fat seems to be the recipe for a svelte healthy body.

I still believe there is a lot of good information in The Starch Solution by Dr. John McDougall. He has tons of information on the internet on how his eating plan has helped numerous people with various diseases.

Most activism is brought about by us ordinary people. Patricia Hill Collins

I believe we are what we eat – how can we be anything else. My mother always encouraged me not to diet. She was right. In my early twenties, I quit dieting and by doing so maintained a good weight. As I hit my forties weight started to creep up and I looked for ways of eating to look after that. Suzanne Somers food combining worked for me but I ate more meat and fat than carbs and no fat so I don’t think I was as healthy as I could be. She didn’t like some of the healthiest carbs not embracing bananas and potatoes.

The Starch Solution is a lot like food combining except he doesn’t embrace eating meat and fat. An all or nothing diet doesn’t work for me. I can be really strict but I can’t live the rest of my life thinking I can’t eat whatever. I watched my son and his girlfriend struggle to find things to eat at the hotel in Jamaica because it was an omnivore’s paradise.  They compromised by eating dairy.

We grew up on balanced meals. We didn’t gorge ourselves on cheese and ice-cream as kids. Our meat was grass-fed, our pigs and chickens free-range part of the year and grain-fed. There were no hormones in our meat and few antibiotics or inoculations were used. My mother still eats this way and is healthy at 94.

I’ve changed my diet again. I’ve done my third fast including bone broth, which my son informs me is not fasting. Don’t just say things Mom,” he says. “Words mean something, when we all put a different meaning to the same words, we don’t know what we are talking about.” He’s right I won’t call it a fast. For twenty-four hours from 6:00 in the evening until 6:00 the next evening or thereabout I’ve only had black coffee, black herbal tea, and bone broth.

My life as an experiment continues. I document how I feel and how this works for me. I’ve kept a food journal for years. I believe I am healthier because of it, I can look back and try to figure things out. Gut health is what I am hoping to increase. Dr. Gundry from the Plant Paradox is my new guide. He recommends we eat at least 5 days without animal foods in a row per month to give us almost the same benefits as a completely plant-based diet.

Bone broth is supposed to be good for bone health. As I said I’m an experiment and I feel our diet is what we can control and what leads to health. If we aren’t as healthy as we think we should be shouldn’t we look to our diet?

Mom didn’t have her gall bladder removed when she had gall bladder problems she changed her diet. When she who ate little fat had high cholesterol and Dad who ate fat had low cholesterol she tweaked her diet. We create our health with our knife and fork. If you think you need to tweak your diet maybe you want to look at Dr. Gundry’s Plant Paradox.

We have to find ways to preserve our soil, our health, our planet. I think mixed farms do that by enriching the soil through animal droppings. Land cannot be continuously cultivated.

It can take 500 years to create an inch of soil. The management of our soil is one of our greatest concerns. Big business has its ideas, small farmers have theirs. Does anyone know the truth? Some small farmers are taking their depleted soil and enriching it. These are the people we should be listening to.

We need the people who have done it. Who knows what they are doing, and who have made things better to be heard. We need to hear from the people who increase their water table with trees. We need to hear from the farmers who enrich their poor soil. We need to hear from people who have stopped desertification in their location. We need to hear from people who have become healthier by changing their diet. We need to hear from the people who have remained healthy by eating their ancestral diet.

We need to hear from the people who know how to do things. Monocropping isn’t good for the soil or our health.

There are statistics giving the number of harvests that can be expected from our soils if we keep to the current method of cultivation. Destroying our soil is one of the crises looming ahead of us.

National Geographic has steps they think we should take to ensure we can feed the world in 2050.

Step One: Freeze Agriculture’s footprint.

Step Two: Grow more on the farms we’ve got.

Step Three: Use resources more efficiently – they suggest embracing both commercial farming and organic farming.

Step Four: Shift our diets to less meat. Curtail using food crops for biofuel.

Step Five: Reduce waste.

I believe every country should be able to feed its own population. If we can’t feed our own people what will happen in a crisis?

Food self-sufficiency comes down to whether a country could feel its people with its own production, not whether it actually is. Canada is one of the few countries listed as food sufficient. We might not have the varied diet we love but we’ll have food.

Do we need to be the change we want to see in the world, our health, our family? Is changing ourselves, our practices, and our behavior the only change we can make?

If we could change ourselves, the tendencies in the world would also change. As a man changes his own nature, so does the attitude of the world change towards him. … We need not wait to see what others do. Gandhi

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The Plant Paradox: The Hidden Dangers in “Healthy” Foods That Cause Disease and Weight Gain Hardcover – Apr 25 2017

by Dr. Steven R Gundry MD (Author) 4.4 out of 5 stars 277 customer reviews#1 Best Sellerin Immune Systems

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Changing for the better, growth not decay. Standing still is not an option, we must go forward.

Standing still is not an option, we must go forward. Changing for the better,, growth not decay.

Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

Any change, even a change for the better, is always accompanied by drawbacks and discomforts. Arnold Bennet

We all love a little recognition. One of the things with a blog is they tell us where our readers come from, and average posts read per reader. One morning I had one reader that read 49 posts.

We start something we don’t know where it will go. I fantasize that something I’ve written helps someone because isn’t that what we all want, to be significant, and to matter.

Watching the children going back to school they have parents that matter. Someone helped them get ready for school, packed a lunch, walks them to school or sees them off at the door, is waiting for them when they get home, or picks them up. There is no more significant role in our lives than that of a parent. It can seem overwhelming in the midst of it, but it passes by fast.

Before you are ready you are waiting for grandchildren. Our lives pass in a blink and we each have our roles to play. How well we play those roles impacts the generations.

No matter what else we do raising a family seems like the most important thing. Every one of us is an unbroken line of people who have lived through the best and worst of times. They got through whatever they had to, and we are a testament to their tenacity, perseverance, and luck.

We are a thread in the tapestry of life. We don’t know if our thread will have many branches or not. In a thousand years, we may have generations that can be traced back to us, or our line may have fizzled out. We don’t know what the future holds, we only have today.

When you’re finished changing, you’re finished. Benjamin Franklin

Each day is ours, we aren’t promised more. What we do with our day will determine our life. Twenty-four golden hours, some of which we must sleep is ours to spend. Are we kind, compassionate, encouraging, inspirational, dependable, and loving? Are we doing the best we can even if we’d like to do better? Is someone’s life better because we are in it? Do we let people know that our lives are better because of them?

Little joys, little problems, little accomplishments, little things end up to be the big things in life. The big things are comprised of little things. Weddings aren’t one big thing, they are a bunch of little things that come together to create a wonderful event. Marriages aren’t one big thing; they are all the little things adding up to something. The special moments, the hard decisions, the disappointments, overcoming hardships, accepting challenges, and getting through today to get to tomorrow. Sometimes that is all we can do, is get through today. If we get through enough today’s it adds up to a long marriage that got through the highs and lows of life.

No one just gets the good parts of life. No one just gets the sweet without the bitter, the easy without the hard, the joy without some sorrow, opportunities without challenges, gains without losses, and laughter without tears. We may think it would be better if we did but it probably wouldn’t be. No contrast in our lives, no up and no downs, no highs and lows, just bland sameness all the days of our life. How boring would that be?

I listen to people talk about retirement. They want to relax and do nothing. Sounds great for about a week, then what? Don’t we always need one more mountain to climb? In retirement one of the joys may be that we get to choose the mountains instead of feeling we had to do what we had to do.

What do we have to learn, acknowledge, experience, give, develop, accept, and understand? Where do we need to grow? Are we getting better or bitter with the years? Do we criticize or uplift others? Is there something we could focus on that would make our life better for ourselves and others?

I cannot say whether things will get better if we change; what I can say is they must change if they are to get better. Georg C. Lichtenberg

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Everyday Evolution: Practical Perspectives on Personal Growth, Permanent Changes, and Progress in Life by [Meadows, Martin]
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Progress, not perfection. Change our mind and we change our life. We are the change we need to see in our lives.

We are the change we need to see in our lives. Progress not Perfection. Change our mind and we change our lives.

Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything. George Bernard Shaw

Yesterday a little serendipity played in our life. My sister was flying home and her flights got changed, and she ended up with a layover where we live. We picked her and her family up, went for breakfast, had a good visit, barbequed and took them back to the airport to continue home. They must have been tired by the time they arrived at their destination. They were up from 2:30 am and should have arrived home at 10:30 pm.

Today is my daughter’s one year anniversary. This year has flown by. We have some decisions to make. The wedding dress still hangs in the spare room. A treadmill that was picked up cheap but had to be dismantled to get out of its former home was not as easy to put together as we thought it would be. Yesterday someone came by who knew what they were doing and assembled it and the sound of the treadmill whirring was music to our ears.

My daughter came into the house and asked if she could lend or give a child gate to their friends who had the honeymoon baby from their wedding. I didn’t realize it was in the pile my husband is planning to take to the dump. “I’m not sorting anything, everything is going to the dump,” he says. We’ve been warned.

Clutter has a life of its own and once one piece is allowed to accumulate the pile grows and grows. I’m reading a book and the author tells me. “I can tell the state of your finances by the state of your home.” According to him, if we aren’t neat and tidy in other areas, we won’t be neat and tidy in our finances either.  I remember listening to an author talk about how she didn’t even have a junk drawer in her house.

Taming clutter is an ongoing challenge. I just took three bags of clothes to Value Village not long ago. My closet doesn’t look empty, how could I pull three bags of clothes out and still have anything to wear? I read about capsule wardrobes, I’ve even built them along with my other clothes, but limiting myself to a summer wardrobe of 29 pieces, or 40 pieces seems unthinkable. What would I wear? When I counted I had more than that in tops. I have at times turned all my hangers one way and as I wear things I turn the hanger the other way. It is a good way to see what actually gets worn. The guest room closet might house my spring/summer clothes as I see what I have for fall/winter.

Resistance is never the agent of change. You have to embrace the actions that are going to get you closer to your goal. Ali Vincent

I’m a long way from wanting a financial guru to walk through my house and tell me the state of my finances by the state of my housekeeping. I have an aunt who doesn’t have an overstuffed closet. I see them on TV but that isn’t real life, I see them at open houses but that isn’t real life either. Could I get my house on a daily basis to be ready for scrutiny at any time? Now that is a challenge?

What if everything in our life is a reflection of other things in our life? Our state of mind is reflected by our surroundings, our relationships, our actions. When we change one thing we change other things. What if we have more control than we think we have? What if taking care of the small things is taking care of the big things? What if Mother Teresa is right that if we all swept our own doorstep the whole world would be clean? What if when we take care of the pennies the dollars take care of themselves?

What if it is our choice and we can be orderly and prompt or chaotic and messy and we choose which it is by our habits, actions, and behavior? We can’t have two objects occupy the same space in our house or garden. If we let the weeds grow in our garden or lawn then the flowers and grass get choked out. Our mind is the same we can’t have a negative thought and a positive thought occupy the same space. Sometimes we have negative thoughts but if we at least acknowledge them we can deal with them. We need to acknowledge our worries, fears, insecurities, and challenges. Really take a good look at what we are worried about. Just like we need to look in our closet and question why we are keeping that old red sweater we loved, but it has had its day.

Some of our old thoughts have had their day too. We don’t know where they all came from but we carry them around with us. We can change our thoughts, we can change our life, and we can remove the clutter from our closet. We may hardly notice at first, but every small change for the good is moving in the right direction. We can do it with our exercise and food habits. We can make progress, and if progress, not perfection is our aim we can make progress our whole lives.

We need to find a home for a wedding dress that served its purpose but should no longer be hanging on the door in the spare room. What are the small changes we can make that will serve our lives in a big way?

The first step toward change is awareness. The second step is acceptance. Nathaniel Branden

Yesterday I was clever, so I wanted to change the world. Today I am wise, so I am changing myself. Rumi

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What Your Clutter Is Trying to Tell You: Uncover the Message in the Mess and Reclaim Your Life by [Richardson, Kerri L.]
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If we don’t develop self-control we will be controlled. Self-mastery is self-control, self-control leads to self-respect.

Self-mastery is self-control, self-control leads to self-respect. If we don't develop self-control we will be controlled.

Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

Better a patient person than a warrior, one with self-control than one who takes a city. Proverbs 16:32

Last night my son showed me a podcast by a woman who had her podcasts impact her husband’s business. She says it won’t deter her. She is going to talk about things she thinks need to be talked about.

I bought a book the other day The Gift Of Change by Marianne Williamson and in the very beginning of the book she says. The times in which we live are difficult, more difficult than a lot of people seem willing to admit. There is an abiding sense of collective anxiety, understandable but not easy to talk about.

My son was asking me the other night. Did I think I was a good communicator with my Toastmasters, blogging, writing, etc? Yes, I told him I think I am a pretty good communicator. My son and I have the same problem we love to hear ourselves talk. We think we are pretty good at it. That is not communication. If we want to communicate we have to become good listeners.

In my life, I’ve incorporated listening and asking questions more but not enough. Instead of just discounting what someone says I should question what makes them feel that way, or look at it that way, or feel that is the right course of action.

We are hearing in the news about groups whose goal is to get rid of capitalism. They want to replace it with something better. The only problem is, what is better? No society has seemingly found better. We live in a society that mostly works. How do we build a society that is fair to every citizen? It is impossible I believe because those who have talents, skills, ambitions; others do not have will do better. Do we only want to offer equal opportunity equal to those without any opportunity?

My mother has many grandchildren and their abilities, talents, interests, goals are not the same. One of them has Down syndrome, should everyone’s opportunities and choices be limited because his choices are? How else could we make it fair? What would fair look like? If everyone has the opportunity they go after without imposed ceilings on their accomplishments outside of themselves, isn’t that better?

Many of us impose conditions on ourselves; we say we can’t do something because of our own limiting beliefs, not anything imposed by society. We all have to deal with that.

George Bernard Shaw was asked who he would have been in all of history if given the choice. He replied, “The George Bernard Shaw I might have been.”

Like a city whose walls are broken through is a person who lacks self-control. Proverbs 25:28

There are so many opportunities and choices we could have made. Every choice eliminates other choices. We can’t possibly have taken advantage of every opportunity. Many opportunities we don’t recognize until we look back. We need to go forward in life with some humility, trust, and kindness towards our former self. Did we do the best we knew how to do? Sometimes it is hard to believe the choices we made were the best we knew how to make. Why out of all the choices we had, did we make the worst possible one?

Maybe we have lessons to learn we can learn no other way. In Marianne Williamson’s book, she says sometimes we need to illuminate the changes we need to make. Only when we can really see them through an obvious screw up can we decide to change and go forward, better.

Oprah says life sends us a whisper, then a holler, then maybe a brick to our head. At some point, we need to recognize there is something within ourselves we need to change. If we can recognize and change things within ourselves perhaps we can have some empathy for other people and where they need to grow and change.

What if we could try and understand where some of the people are coming from who seem hopeless and lash out at society in the worst ways? What are they trying to tell us? How are we failing as a society to meet the needs of everyone? Who are we privileging over others? Who used to have the privileges? Who feels they have no opportunity?

Many men these days feel we are privileging women over men. I see in my own life that I have privileges by being a woman. As a woman, we are more allowed to dabble in things than get serious about life and be able to support a family. We still have the opportunity to choose motherhood over paid work. The Government even helps us do it. It seems we have some women choosing the security of the Government stipend over that of a husband. Men are feeling rejected by women, used by women, judged by women.

My son tells me he thinks it is much harder for an ugly man than for an ugly woman. Monogamy works especially for men where there is a woman for pretty much every man. Maybe some men are finding it hard to find a mate now that women have more choice? With the choices we women have, are we making the right ones? Aren’t many of us putting off marriage and motherhood too long? When we choose motherhood without a husband, and our children have no fathers in their life don’t our children and society suffer?

Our ambitions outside of motherhood can often be attained after motherhood is no longer an option. If my brain holds out my writing can continue if I’m lucky until I die.

It’s a little late to go back and be the “barrel racer” I might have been.

I never thought of myself as old fashioned but I am embracing family values and religious principles that our society was built on because what is the moral compass to replace them?

We control ourselves or we become controlled. Throughout history, it seems women were controlled. If we don’t want to be controlled we will have to control ourselves. Self-control in men is called being a gentleman.  Self-control is equally important for women. We need to become our own control boards; we need to censor our own behaviors.

We can do it if we choose to. How long will the window of self-control and responsibility be an option? If we don’t take it will we go back to being controlled?

Rather, he must be hospitable, one who loves what is good, who is self-controlled, upright, holy, and disciplined. Titus 1:8

“I have the right to do anything,” you say – but not everything is beneficial. “I have the right to do anything” – but I will not be mastered by anything. 1 Corinthians 6:12

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The Gift of Change: Spiritual Guidance for Living Your Best Life Paperback – Jan 3 2006

by Marianne Williamson (Author) 4.4 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews

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Living through the depths of despair and moving on. Do we get stronger in the broken places?

Do we get stronger in the broken places? Living through the depths of despair and moving on.

And suddenly you know: It’s time to start something new and trust the magic of beginnings. Meister Eckhart

Last night my husband and I went out to see Once Upon a Time in Hollywood. It was good and gives us things to talk about. One of the things I want from a movie is things to talk about.

As we sat in our seats an old friend came up to us. She’d seen us walk in but I hadn’t seen her. It’s almost ten years ago that the worst happened in her life. Her husband died when he had a heart attack on a family outing.

She and I and other girlfriends went out to dinner when she’d been widowed about a year and a half. She was doing well, the kids were doing well. Ten years later she’s happily remarried; her new husband of three and a half years has two children. It is as if her kids gained siblings she says.

We think that once the worst has happened our life will never get back on its moorings again. My mother had a fifty-year marriage and five children after she was widowed with three children. Life goes on; we don’t know how it will unfold.

We may not like the turn our life has taken. It may seem unfair that this has happened to us. It has happened and we must go forward. I have never had to deal with this heartache myself, but because my mother did I feel I can talk about it.

At some point. you just have to let go of what you thought should happen and live in what is happening. Unknown

We often talk about life as if it’s a choice, often we only get to react to what happens in our lives. Whatever has happened in our lives is always there. Perhaps it is like a not blank canvas, we can paint on it what we want, and what was on that canvas adds depth to our lives that wouldn’t be there without everything we’ve experienced.

I love happy endings, to think things will work out in the end. If someone hasn’t found their new someone then it is still in the future. Adventure awaits. Life isn’t over till it’s over and there are new highs and lows coming for all of us.

Moving on doesn’t mean forgetting. It means you choose happiness over hurt. Unknown

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Mending of a Broken Heart Paperback – Sep 1 2016

by James Michael Castleton (Author)4.6 out of 5 stars 5 reviews from | Be the first to review this item

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Our reputation with our self is self-esteem. Choosing what is good and right most of the time. Dealing with our own issues, let others deal with theirs.

Choosing what is good and right most of the time. Dealing with our own issues, let others deal with theirs. Our reputation with our self is self-esteem.

Painting by Belynda Wilson Thomas

Work on being in love with the person in the mirror who has been through so much but is still standing. Unknown

Self-esteem is our reputation with our self. According to a book I bought yesterday Never Get Angry Again by David J. Lieberman, PH.D. We make all of our decisions in life by choosing what feels good, choosing what makes us look good, or choosing what is good or right.

When we choose what feels comfortable or enjoyable this is our body driving this choice. If we choose excess in this area it can lead to overeating, oversleeping, and other excesses. There is nothing wrong with choosing things because they make us feel good unless we choose them to excess and then they start to make us feel bad.

When we choose things that make us look good, we may tell jokes at someone else’s expense to heighten our own self-worth. We may make purchases we can’t afford to give the illusion of being more successful than we are.

We gain self-esteem when we make choices that are good and right. Self-esteem and self-control are intertwined. Each time we sacrifice what is responsible because we can’t rise above the whim of an impulse, or sell ourselves out to win the praise or approval of others, we lose self-respect. If we continually succumb to immediate gratification or live to protect or project an image, we become angry with ourselves and ultimately feel empty inside.

We long to love ourselves, but instead, we lose ourselves. When we can’t invest in our own wellbeing, we spiral down to the hollow self-destructive refuge of activities that take us away from the pain.

Studies show that our tendency to avoid the pain inherent in taking responsibility for our lives is at the core of anger, and is central to nearly every emotional ailment, including anxiety, depression, and addiction.

To love yourself is to understand you don’t need to be perfect to be good. Unknown

We need to feel the pain of whatever we are going through. I remember watching a TV show, every time there was something to deal with the mother and her daughter got out a tub of ice cream and two spoons. If it was particularly difficult they each had their own tub. It worked for the show, but it doesn’t work so well in real life. After the ice cream is finished we still have the problem to deal with. Not dealing with problems is never the answer. Problems not dealt with do not get smaller, they grow, morph and take over our lives in ways we can’t imagine.

To the degree that we refuse to accept the truth about ourselves and our lives – and overcome our laziness and fear of pain – the “ego” engages to “protect” us, and it shifts the blame elsewhere. We start fault finding outside our self, because if there is nothing wrong with me “our ego says,” then there must be something wrong with you, or the world is unfair, or people are out to get me. Seedlings of paranoia and neuroses take root. For us to remain unblemished in our own minds, we are forced to distort the world around us, and our grasp on reality is flawed, then our adjustment to life will suffer.

Responsible (soul-oriented) choice leads to self-esteem increasing, which leads to ego shrinking, which leads to perspective widening, which leads to undistorted reality, which leads to seeing and accepting the truth (even when it is painful) = positive emotional health leads to acting responsibly. David J. Lieberman, PH.D.

Irresponsible (ego-oriented/overindulgent body) choice leads to self-esteem decreasing, which leads to ego expanding, which leads to perspective narrowing, which leads to distorted reality, which leads to being unable/unwilling to see and accept truth (when difficult or painful) = negative mental health leads to acting irresponsibly. David J. Lieberman, PH.D.

When we become angry at ourselves, we become angry at the world. Who wants to admit we are selfish, lazy, flawed, or a failure. We are what we are and we need to accept ourselves warts and all. When we accept ourselves how we are we can do better. It is when we don’t accept ourselves that we don’t do better; we make everything someone else’s fault. We make ourselves powerless in our own lives when we won’t take responsibility for everything in our lives. Even if it isn’t actually our fault because the world is unfair, waiting for someone else to fix our lives will never work. Any change that needs to be made will have to be made by us, or it won’t be made at all. One small change upon another small change will build the life we want, or at least make the one we have better.

We can add to, or take away from our self esteem with the choices we make daily. We may think we need big achievements to improve our self esteem, I doubt this is true. Many small things add up to big things.

We can improve our self and our corner of the world. Start small. This morning as I walked Lulu (my dog) I picked up a few pieces of trash in an otherwise pristine park. It wasn’t much, but it was something. Often we can do something to make our relationships better, or worse. We can do things we know they hate, or we can do something to make them smile. It’s our choice. Over days, weeks, months these little gestures add up to negative or positive deposits into our partners love tanks. An encouraging word, smile, hug, act of service, a small gift, or spending time together is all deposits. Angry words, disapproving looks, withdrawal from any form of contact, making time only for others, doing things we know they hate, and disapprove of, are all withdrawals from our partners love tanks.

It’s our choice but let’s not pretend we aren’t doing what we are doing, negatively, or positively. That someone may not receive our gesture in the spirit it is offered is not our problem. Maybe we need to feel empathy for what is going on in their life. They may have a hard time accepting or giving love. They may have stuff they need to deal with. We have to deal with ours. They need to deal with theirs. We can’t fix someone else, but if we can deal with life how it truly is and be proactive in our own lives then we are building our own self-esteem.

Self-love is not selfish; you cannot truly love another until you know how to love yourself. Unknown

Care about what other people think and you will always be their prisoner. Lao Tzu

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, self-esteem, and love.

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Never Get Angry Again: The Foolproof Way to Stay Calm and in Control in Any Conversation or SituationHardcover – Jan 9 2018

by Dr. David J. Lieberman Ph.D. (Author) 5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Does our life call out for editing, tweaking, or a complete makeover? Life is growth. Change is the only constant.

Life is growth. Change is the only constant. Does our life call out for editing, tweaking, or a complete makeover?

Every success story is a tale of constant adaptation, revision, and change. Richard Branson

I’m working on editing my novel. I found a book Beginnings, Middles & Ends at Value Village on Saturday. It seems almost like serendipity I go there perusing the books and voila something jumps out at me. Editing, I’ve been putting it off, because it seemed just moving commas around wasn’t getting me anywhere. This book has helped already.

Our lives may need tweaking, editing, or a complete makeover. Often they need care and attention and we need care and attention. Have we been last on our list? Or are we like they tell us on the plane, putting our air mask on first so we can help others. If we don’t take care of ourselves we have nothing to give at some point, we are depleted.

We don’t know where our growth will come from. We don’t know what the future holds. Could Nelson Mandela possibly have known what greatness was in store for him as he was thrown into prison as an angry young man? Was there any other way for him to become the statesman he became?

Do we learn more from adversity? Is adversity the best thing that happens to us we would never choose. We must rise up and become stronger. It is like a sharp pull on our chain, we have to rethink, regroup, and grow. We will never be the same after we go through adversity, we won’t look at things quite the same way. We may think having to take off our rose colored glasses is a bad thing but is it really?

Maybe we thought we couldn’t fail. Maybe we thought our spouse couldn’t leave, maybe we thought devastation could never come to us. Maybe we thought petty quarrels and situations others face wouldn’t happen to us because we handle things better than that. We wouldn’t have those petty misunderstandings in our relationship.  

The secret to change is to focus all of your energy, not on fighting the old, but on building the new. Socrates

Well handle this, life says. Handle it we must. We might handle it well or badly but we must handle it because we can’t ignore it. If we can ignore it, eventually it will become big enough we can’t pretend we don’t see the giant bean stock of a problem that has become our life.

We might even pat ourselves on the back because we always deal with the little things. One day a “little” thing may become something we can’t believe. As the tsunami takes over, we are hanging on for dear life. It could be anything that starts this process. A diagnosis we can’t believe, we eat well, we exercise, and we think good thoughts. How could this happen to us? It could be a misunderstanding and unmet expectations that morph and grow into something seemingly insurmountable. The economy could tank, or just our job or business sector be affected. Maybe we are reaching a stage in our life we don’t feel ready for.

Whatever is before us we must handle, grow, and deal with. We don’t know what will become of our life, relationships, but things will be different. We may think we can just go back, but we can’t.

Even if the diagnosis we are waiting for is negative, we dodged the bullet; we are given a clean bill of health. We will never be the person we were before we worried about that diagnosis. Confronting what we thought might be the end of our life may spur us on to do the things we want to get done. We’ve contemplated the end, we’ve been given a gift, and we need to use it.

Wherever we are in our life, there is probably some tweaking and editing that can be done. Do we need more, less, or different? Have we been doing too much for others, or not enough? Is there a hole in our life we need to fill? Are changes happening we don’t want but must accept? It is what it is, it can’t be different. Will it make us better, or bitter?

We cannot become what we want to be by remaining what, we are. Max DePree

Whatever makes you uncomfortable is your biggest opportunity for growth.  Bryant McGill

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, meaning, change, and love.

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Change Your Thoughts, Change Your Life by [Dyer, Wayne W.]
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Change Your Thoughts, Change Your Life Kindle Edition

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