Posted in Communication, Motivation, Personal Development, Positive Thinking, Potential, Self Improvement

Thankful – Tonight We Pray For What We Know Can Be.

Right now, at this time, in this crazy, out of kilter world, we are living in you may think there is less and less to be thankful for. It can certainly seem that way. There are certain aspects of this world that scares the bejeezus out of me.

Each day we are virtually bombarded with negativity. We see and hear on the news about people hurting one another, killing one another, for no rational reason. Families killing families. People losing their homes; living in their cars or on the street. People needing so much help. Immigrants suffering in their own countries looking for a new life and finding more suffering. There’s so much sorrow.

Politically we are constantly given negative information. Politicians lying to us and using misinformation. Our President encouraging the very activities that create fear and divisiveness between all of us. Why ? I don’t want that, do you ? Help us be better people, not worse. Do not divide us.

We hear about North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and Russian President Vladimir Putin and the threat of nuclear weapons.

Constant discussion of trades wars with China and the effect on our economy. The position of the United States on the world stage; our attitude toward other countries, our allies and our enemies.

The news media bombarding us with a constant updates of everything happening at any given moment in time. We hear about our neighborhood, our town, city, county and state. We hear about the US, Canada, Mexico, Venezuela, the Middle East. Wherever there is a crisis, or a tragedy, we hear about it.

The media is doing their job by informing us and, unfortunately for us, the things we hear about are the negative news because it is headline worthy and will gain the most attention. The media compete with each other for the biggest draw. I do not see it changing, although I wish it would. Is there anything we can do to change that ?

Maybe, I hope so, I think so. Because in spite of all the negatives I believe there is more good. I believe there are more great, inspirational, caring people than bad. I believe we all can make our lives better, our world better.

Yes, we all need to be informed, but please give us more of the “good” stuff that is happening. Tell us about all the wonderful things that people do for other people. I know most of the TV news channels end their programs with one of those stories but I would appreciate more. I need more.

So what do we do ? Everyone will have different opinions about the state of the world and that is to be understood. What bothers me may not be an issue for you. Some of us will have problems ourselves that seem insurmountable and need help ourselves. I guess the question for each of us to ask is what can I do; is there anything that each of us can do even when we think we can’t.

When we help someone, we are also helping ourselves. By helping someone feel better it changes our perspective too and we automatically feel better ourselves. When you see that person react to your kindness you will be moved by their smile. You will feel better and smile more throughout you day as will they.

From the lyrics of “Thankful”
“Somedays we forget
To look around us
Somedays we can’t see
The joy that surrounds us
So caught up inside ourselves
We take when we should give.”

It is so easy to focus on the negatives that we are bombarded with each and every day. We do forget to look around us and see the joy that surrounds us. We do take when we should give. Sometimes I think we are not mindful of what is really taking place. We do not truly observe, we do not comprehend what we are seeing. We just do not pay attention.

I will not say we do not care because I know we do. We each have our bad days, the days when something just drags us down and it overwhelms you. Do Not Let It.

If each of us would take the time to truly see and look at what is there right in front of us maybe we would react in a different way. We would be kinder and more compassionate.

Recently I have really been trying to take myself away from the negative mindset. Yes, I still listen to the evening news because I do want to know some of what is happening in our world but I listen selectively. I am avoiding the majority of my email feed and scan and delete and only read those that I truly feel will be beneficial.

I do the same with Twitter and Facebook. I skim over what I consider as negative and only read what is positive. I post positive thoughts and information. My blog reflects
positivity, or that is certainly my intension. I look for positive quotes almost every day and I share those with others and I truly think about them. They make me feel better.

Each day I try to wake up and immediately tell myself this is a good day, it’s a beautiful day full of possibilities. What am I going to do today to feel good about myself and my surroundings. I think that we have to start with ourselves. If we tend to be negative then we have to switch our mindset. We control that and if we can be more positive ourselves than we are more capable of spreading that out into the world.

Second verse from “Thankful”
“So for tonight we pray for
What we know can be.
And on this day we hope for
What we still can’t see.
It’s up to us to be the change
And even though we all can still do more
There’s so much to be thankful for. ”

Here is one “good” story I heard on the nightly news last night:
As a means of being a positive role model for kids who face the same cultural difficulties as himself, Jerome Stanislaus gives free flights and mentorship to children – particularly kids of color.
Stanislaus’s labor of love first started last year when he began working with a nonprofit called Fly for the Culture.

And this story also from the evening news:

They saw a woman eating by herself in a restaurant and decided to offer their company after thinking “My exact thoughts [were] ‘dang I’d hate to have to eat alone,’” Her response was that she believes God sent her to the restaurant that night so she could be reminded of the kindness of strangers.

While researching for this post I was happy to find a website called Positive News,
which since being established in July has become the world’s first crowdfunded global media cooperative. The paper is now owned by 1526 readers, journalists and supporters.

I also found other examples such as the Real Life Heroes series by KST TV on YouTube, along with sites including Good News NetworkJoy News NetworkDaily GoodHuffPost Good newsOh My GoodnessPositive NewsSunny Skyz and Gimundo.

These sites were part of this article:

The bad news we are exposed to can affect us in such a way that it will change our view points in a negative way. I do not want that to happen. The more negative we all become the more negative everything around will be as well.

Decide to be positive and share that with everyone you come across. Smile at everyone, say hi, tell them it’s a great day even if it is raining or it’s cold and the sun is not shining. Make your smile and attitude as big, shiny and warm as the sun and keep passing it around. So easy to do but it can have a big effect.

Look for ways to help. It doesn’t have to be big. A simple gesture like holding the door for someone or asking them if they need help will make someone feel better. You see someone struggling, ask them if the they need help. Have you ever been in a parking lot and you see someone who looks like they can’t find their car ? or a young mother with a baby and a crying child too ? or someone who drops something and is limited in their mobility ? You guessed it, ask them if they need help.

Volunteer at a homeless shelter, a soup kitchen or a pet shelter. Drive someone to their doctors appointment or to buy groceries. Know someone who is taking care of a sick family member ? ask them if there is anything you can do to help. All simple things but they help so much and they make all the difference in the world to the person who needs the help.

Looking for more ideas on how to help use this site as a reference.

Third verse for the song, “Thankful”
Look beyond ourselves
There’s so much sorrow
It’s way too late to say
I’ll cry tomorrow
Each of us must find our truth
It’s so long overdue

I do not want to believe that it is too late to make positive change in everyone’s life. I believe in hope and I believe in our ability to change. We can be compassionate. We can look beyond ourselves and know our own truth. Please be a positive force in this world. Smile and help someone today and every day going forward.

As always, Thank You for reading my blog. Have a “Thankful” day !

Posted in Communication, Motivation, Personal Development, Positive Thinking, Potential, Self Improvement

The Dimensions of Beauty

“Life is full of beauty. Notice it. Notice the bumble bee, the small child, and the smiling faces. Smell the rain, and feel the wind. Live your life to the fullest potential, and fight for your dreams.” – Ashley Smith

What do you consider beauty and what dimensions do you think it adds to your life ?

I see beauty everywhere. Certainly you see beauty in a child’s face. I see the beautiful light and grace in the face of a child and the wonderful possibility of life.

There is also beauty in the face of the aged; their endurance showing in the lines of their face, the shape of their hands and the bend in their back.

Walk outside and breath in the smell of rain and damp earth. See the bright yellow daffodils and the flowering trees, Hear the birds waking in the early morning and the peepers filling the air with their sound by the pond in the evening.

Watch the cat and dog, such good friends, bound outside together and follow each other through the yard.

Hear the sound of the little voice of your grandson and listen to your teenage granddaughter as she talks about her new interests and share her talents with you.

Listen to your favorite music. Music adds so much to your life. It is a wondrous thing. Calming and exciting. soothing and motivating. Beautiful.

Each morning welcome that first cup of coffee. Bend and flex, stand up straight and enjoy the movement. Relishing that you are alive and dream about what you will do today.

These are all beautiful to me. What do you find beautiful ?

“Give every day the chance to become the most beautiful day of your life.” – Mark Twain

People are beautiful. I think all people have beauty in them. Some will be physically beautiful and some will be emotionally beautiful. We may not be aware of each person’s beauty or we may not accept that they are.

If you smile at someone and they smile back I truly believe you have just experienced beauty. A smile lights someone’s face, their eyes and their spirit. Part of the beauty is that you both have shared a little piece of yourself.

When you go online and look at photos of people, and I mean all people, you will see all forms of beauty. I like the fact that we are all different. The shape of someone’s face, their beautiful eyes, the color of their skin and the way it all fits together. There is a piece of beauty in all of us. All we have to do is look.

“Flawed, we’re truly interesting, truly memorable, and yes, truly beautiful.” ― Justina Chen Headley

Beauty exists in what we do. We have a choice each day to decide what we will do with our time. I wish all of us could make one, just one, effort each day to help someone else. The smallest thing can be powerful. What a beautiful world it would be if we did.

Of course, the wonderful smile, the sincere hello, making eye contact even if you wonder if you should. Asking someone if they need help, buying someone a cup of coffee.

Volunteering at a hospice center, a pet rescue, a pre-school or library.

Paying it forward….what can you do. I always donate money at the checkout for families in need, contributing to food drives, the United Way. I can’t afford much but I always give what I can. I often think I hope someone would do the same if I were in the same situation.

Offering to shovel snow or mow someones lawn, taking someone to a doctor’s appointment. Taking a plate of cookies or a whole meal to someone who is in need. Small things but they will make you, and them, feel better. A simple act of kindness is beautiful.

So what are you going to do today ? Make it beautiful !

“Beauty can be consoling, disturbing, sacred, profane; it can be exhilarating, appealing, inspiring, chilling. It can affect us in an unlimited variety of ways. Yet it is never viewed with indifference: beauty demands to be noticed; it speaks to us directly like the voice of an intimate friend. If there are people who are indifferent to beauty, then it is surely because they do not perceive it.” – Roger Scruton, Beauty

As always, like you for reading my blog. Have a beautiful day !