Shifting Our Focus

“Life seems sometimes like nothing more than a series of losses, from beginning to end. That’s the given. How you respond to those losses, what you make of what’s left, that’s the part you have to make up as you go.”

– Katherine Weber

I came across this quote today and it hit me like a slap in the face. I wasn’t searching for quotes; it was just there like it was meant for me to read. I really started to think about my life, my thoughts, and my attitude towards certain things. For the last number of years (too many years to put an exact number on), I have said to myself, “my life is a series of losses.” It is all I have been focusing on. My losses. My life has been one loss after another. Whether it is a loss of a loved one, the loss of a job, the loss of money, or a number of other things; my life is a series of losses. However, I am not the only one who is alive on this planet. So many others feel the same way as I do. So many others have it worse off than I do. Our eyes are sometimes open only to our pain and closed to the pain other people go through. We get lost in our own pain all too often. We forget what matters. We give up. Once we start shifting our focus to others and helping others, our own lives improve as well. Not only do we make someone else feel better, but we feel better for helping someone else. I will slip and lose my focus from time to time, but before my life ends, I am hoping to help other people see things in a more positive light. After all, isn’t that what we were put on this planet for?

Does God Ever Need A Beer?

He watches over us from above. He sees everything we do and knows what is in our hearts and minds. He notices when we do good and knows when we do bad. No, I am not talking about Santa Claus. I am referring to God. He is all around us whether we notice or not. He built this world for us hoping we cherish it and do something positive in it and for it. What happens when we don’t?

Most of us have good intentions and we mean well. We live our lives to do good for our family, our friends, and our community. There are more decent people doing good than the other way around. Day in and day out, we try our best and don’t mean any harm. “Our best” is different for every person. Our talents, motivations, intentions, needs, and wants are all different from each other’s. We are put on this Earth to grow, learn, help each other out, and do good. What happens when we don’t?

I often wonder how God, All Knowing and All Mighty, deals with things and handles things when we as humans, mess up. When He points us in a direction and we go the other way, does He shake His head? When we miss the obvious, does He put His hands over His eyes? When we do something negative, does He take a deep breath to calm Himself? Having a whole world to watch over, does God ever need a beer?

I sometimes picture God in His throne with a beer relaxing “at the end of a day.” I wonder how He could not need a beer when us as humans are constantly needing help, redirection, advice, and improvement in our lives. In my opinion, He must be so great and so strong in order to deal with billions of people. How great is it that He loves us no matter what we do or what we say. Even with that said, I still wonder if God ever needs a beer?

Don’t Compare Yourself To Others

Each experience we go through changes us. Each situation, good & bad, shapes us. Little by little we learn something from life’s challenges. We don’t learn it all at once. It takes time. It can take months, years, or a lifetime. It takes many lessons through life to get to the point of patience, acceptance, tolerance, listening, and asking for help. We don’t even have to go through the experience ourselves; Just watching someone else go through it, we should recognize a light bulb go on in our minds. We should be able to learn from any situation whether we ourselves go through it or not. It really doesn’t have to be a hard lesson to learn; it can be minor. If we keep our eyes open, we will learn from any good or bad situation, or we will be presented with it again.

Acceptance is a big lesson for me personally. I will never be a millionaire, live in Hawaii, have a huge house, or that perfect job. I compare myself to my family, friends, and to people I have never met. It’s hard not to. I feel I should be at a certain point in my life, or have accomplished this and that, and I am not and I don’t. I could have worked harder. I could have pushed myself more. I could have accomplished more. I also know there are others out there wishing they were in my shoes.

With the help of God, family, and friends, we fight our own battles. We have our responsibilities, problems, accomplishments, and failures. We should not compare ourselves to others. We are all different. We all learn at our own pace. We go through different challenges and sometimes the same challenges, which affect us all differently. We are all built and made different from each other. Accept it. Tolerate it. Have patience. Don’t compare yourself to others. It will get you nowhere.

Does It Really Matter?

Life. There is so much to do and so much to say. So much to concentrate on and so much to forget. Some things to worry about and most things to let go.  Certain things to accomplish and some to throw out the window.

Does it really matter if we drive 85mph in a 70mph zone just to get somewhere two minutes faster? Does it really matter if I write this blog all in first person or part in first person, second person, and third person? Does it really matter if I follow a diet so to speak or eat and drink what I want in moderation? Does it really matter if I am 110 pounds or 160 pounds? Does it really matter what others think or what I think? Does it really matter if I stay up till 10pm or 2am? Does it really matter if I am not working, working part time or working full time? Does it really matter that I have two college degree’s and not using either of them? Am I doing what I love? Am I doing what I want to do? Am I doing what makes me happy? Well, there you go!

Figure out what is important to you, follow it, and do it.  Something I have learned over and over again is we are here one day and gone the next. It first started with my son being in my belly one day & gone seconds later. Then my oldest brother was here one day & gone minutes later. My daughter was here one day and gone hours later. My second oldest brother was here one day and gone the next. So on and so on and so on……

The older I get, the less I worry. The older I get, the more I realize what is important and what is not important. As long as it doesn’t hurt anyone else, the older I get, the more I do what makes me happy.

Don’t let life get in the way of what you want to do.

 

 

 

Childhood Days

 

It’s 8am and I hear singing off in the distance. I just finished my shower and getting dressed and this faint singing is not coming from my house! I look outside to find my little neighbor girl on her swing set singing. She just finished the third grade and she is starting her summer break. How many almost fourth graders are outside playing and singing on their first days of summer break at 8am? This brought not only a smile to my face, but a thought into my head. How nice would it be to go back to those days? To go back to those care-free, no worry days and just be happy!

My first memories started forming in kindergarten. I can’t remember much before my first days of kindergarten. I remember my elementary school days being the happiest. My only responsibility was to get up, go to school, and come home to do any homework I had. Other than that, I was a kid with little responsibility and very little worries. All I had to do was be a kid!

Then junior high starts and this is where it all begins. Cliques start to form, peer pressure starts, and attitudes begin to take shape. The care-free life I once knew was gone and I was still only a kid. How fast those worry free days go. Those days slipped between my fingers and disappeared even before I knew they were there.

High school starts and ends. Before I know it, I’m off to college. It wasn’t until I was in college until I began to think back to my childhood days and miss them. Responsibilities grow and I am not a child anymore, but an adult. As much as I wanted to at times, it was difficult be in the childhood mindset as I grew older. Things change. We change. The world changes. My future begins to form and my life takes shape. With that comes duties, worries, and things to do. I start to wonder where my childhood went.

Fast forward life to many years down the road to this morning when I heard my little neighbor girl sing and play outside so early in the morning. It brings back good memories of my childhood, but also makes me wonder why I can’t have that back. I believe we all can take a lesson from a child and have our childhood back, if only for a little while. As adults, we need to let go from time time, stop taking life too seriously, have some fun and play more. Forget about responsibilities and worries. Learn to go back to those childhood days. Don’t let your children grow up too fast. My two nephews and one niece are growing like weeds and not only does that mean I am getting old, but their childhood days will be gone before they even know they had them!

Life Is About Balance

 

When one walks on a tight rope, balance is the key. When someone stands on one foot, balance is the key. Life is all about balance. Too much of anything is not good for you. Too much of anything will over whelm a person. Too many sweets gets a person sick. Too much work makes a person dull and stressed. Too much play can have a negative effect on a person. Even too much water is not good for you! Your life and even your day is about balance.

Creating balance in one’s life can be difficult. It’s easy to get wrapped up in life and forget why we are all here in the first place. It’s easy to get so down on life where all you think about is yourself. It’s also easy to be so high on life where all you think about is yourself. It all comes down to balance.

Think of the man or woman who works 60 plus hours a week. They may or may not enjoy the work, but either way it’s stressful. There is no balance.

What about the man or woman who stays home with the kids. There is no break. It’s all about the kids, tending to their needs, driving them here and there. Yes the parent loves their kids and wouldn’t trade it for anything, but where is the balance? How do they relax? It’s all about balance.

Think of the anorexic who does not eat, but exercises too much. Or the opposite habits in some people. There is no balance to this kind of life either.

Think of the depressed person who can’t leave the house on some days or get anything done on some days. There is a soul in that person waiting to be set free and soar. Too much depression in one’s life, and quite frankly, the opposite of that, is not good. It all comes down to balance.

There is time to hold on and a time to let go. There is a time for work and a time for play. There is a time for family & friends and a time for yourself. There is a time to splurge and a time to hold back. There will be down times in a person’s life and high moments in a person’s life. It is so simply really, but difficult at the same time to keep balance in one’s life. The key to life, if you can find it, is balance.

Everything Changes

798035ad13008760ed5000efc202fcfe

Found on sayingimages.com

 

The sun rises. The sun sets. We get up. We go to sleep. Day in and day out we do what we need to do. We tend to our jobs, raise our children, go to school, and help out in the community. Seems pretty routine. Our days sometimes blend into others and it feels like we are doing the same thing over and over. We get bored. We need a change; something different. What many of us don’t realize is this is a gift. Routine can be a gift at times. We need to cherish these days. We need to hold onto these days because eventually, everything changes.

There will be a day when something or everything changes. A loved one will pass away, a child off to college, a child getting married, a move to a different city, a different job, the loss of a pet, a divorce, a new love, etc… There will be a day when then “day in, day out” routine will be something that is wished back. Cherish each new day whether it is a “routine” day or not. Each day is a gift for all of us. Make the most of it!