Monthly Archives: September 2011

Today is a Gift.

If I were my own best friend I would tell myself to spend a little time with Eleanor Roosevelt…

“Yesterday is history

Tomorrow is mystery

Today is a gift”

— Eleanor Roosevelt

***Not much to add to this one. I cannot change what happened yesterday, it is history. I cannot predict what will happen tomorrow, it is a mystery. I try to remember these 3 little lines and live in the moment. But it is so much easier said (or written) than done!

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Thanks for Orange (the color).

If I were my own best friend I would remind myself…

i am thankful for:

  1. sweet potatoes
  2. leaves changing color
  3. crazy Basque cycling fans
  4. pumpkins
  5. the color Orange!

Make a Mess.

If I were my own best friend I give myself directions…

  1. make a big mess of < fill in the blank >
  2. then move forward

***How many times in my life have I made a BIG BIG mess of something??? A lot of times, countless (and I’m not done yet). How about you? Let me just say I do not generally set out with the intention to make the mess (whatever kind it is or was); instead it developed through fate, neglect, inattention, lack of sufficient interest on my part or others, indecision, decisiveness, an accident, over-planning… The end result is or was the same… Mess. 

And then what happens? Do I stay in the mess? Do you stay in the mess? Are you still in the mess? Or did you move forward? 

Messes happen. It’s part of being alive and living your life. Some are bigger and badder than others. Some require extensive clean-up and emotional support. Others require humility and grace. Either way you have to move forward. Otherwise you become part of the mess and then the mess perpetuates… 

Be a Vein.

If I were my own best friend I would think about…

be a vein.

transport back to your heart.

(Things being transported: ideas, experiences, dreams, thoughts, hopes, skills, love)

***In the simplest sense, veins transport blood and various substances (nutrients or waste products) back to the heart.

If you are a vein and you are transporting things back to your heart, the question is what are you taking there? I would love to say I am always feeding my heart the positive list of things from up above… ideas, experiences, dreams, love.

But sometimes, just like veins in the body, I am bringing back “waste products” and I am filling my heart with doubt, fear, anxiety, jealousy. I guess the key each day is recognizing what is good for me, what is bad for me, and focusing as much as I can on bringing back the good and neutralizing or sorting through the bad before it gets to my heart.

Clear your Mind.

If I were my own best friend…

… when I am facing a challenge I would remind myself to read a quote from Samuel Johnson:  “Clear your mind of can’t.”

***First, wouldn’t it be great if we all had “mind-erasers” and when we wanted to get rid of a pesky or pessimistic thought in our heads all we had to do was pull out the “mind-eraser” and go to town?? I know some people would call that meditation or positive thinking or self-control… but sometimes I just want the “easy” route – give me an eraser!

Second, do you remember who Samuel Johnson was?? I will admit, history has never been my strength and I had to look him up and do a little reading. He was English. He lived from 1709 to 1784. He was a very active writer and researcher related to the English language and literature.  He spent nine years writing “Johnson’s Dictionary of the English Language,” which was apparently THE dictionary of choice until the “Oxford English Dictionary” was published almost 150 years later! Wow.

I suspect that while he was spending nine years of his life writing a dictionary there were a fair number of people who told him “you can’t do this.” And he went ahead and did it anyway. Good man. I would love to go back in time and ask him how he persevered and ignored all the people who said “you can’t.” 

Soup.

If I were my own best friend I would tell myself…

make your own soup.

***I love making soup. I love starting with a whole pile of ingredients and spices, measuring cups and spoons, cutting boards and knives. I love chopping and sorting and putting it all together in one large pot. I love watching it simmer and smelling the delicious aroma as it wraps it’s way throughout the house. And then most of all, I love eating it! (and knowing that I made this soup with my own two hands.)

When I’m having a rough time there is something deeply satisfying about making my own food and taking care of myself. When life feels off-kilter this is one of my go-to strategies for re-righting my course. What are yours?? Do you find the same joy in making a large pot of soup?

Thanks for Telephone Calls.

If I were my own best friend I would remind myself…

I am grateful for:

  1. telephone calls from the people i love
  2. giving gifts to others
  3. the ocean
  4. the sound a wave makes when it crashes on the shore
  5. telephone calls AND virtual hugs from the people i love