Archives for posts with tag: journey

2015-03-10 13.16.18Remember the old saying about judging the content of a book by its cover? People often judge a person’s appearance in the same way. More and more, initial judgments have resulted in murder because what is represented is not exactly reality.

It’s interesting, I’ve had this post in draft form for a long time. But today I dragged it up because it occurred to me that both this post regarding appearances and one of my last posts called Emotional Intelligence are a bit related.

Let’s see how. Take a person dressed in shabby clothing, one in fashionable street clothes, and one in a tuxedo or fine dress. The majority of people assume that the social status or caste of each of these individuals is demonstrated by the clothes each wears. Do we know these people? Perhaps you know someone like them. So what of clothing? It covers the body because, by golly, it’s illegal not to wear something. And note, that people can change what they wear to suit different situations in life. Heck, it is socially unacceptable to show up at a special occasion, say at a fine wedding, wearing a pair of overalls and nothing else. We dress for those occasions. And on a daily basis, we conform to different styles to suggest who we are before we meet others. The initial judgment, then, is what one hopes for, especially on a first date or interview when impressions seem to mean even more than usual. Can we suggest that people use the initial judgment as a sort of selfish act? The whole idea of dressing to impress is a facade which may or may not accurately represent the person presenting it. I suppose some people like the attention. It’s a shame people cannot wear something without others guessing who is inside. To utilize our emotional intelligence, we should aim to find out who the person is before we make our final judgments. The same applies to celebrities. Are we star struck? Are we impressed by those who flaunt money in the form of clothing or vehicles? Why does it matter?

If you’ve been paying attention to current events, you will have noticed that police officers have gunned down or beaten people to death by appearances. I imagine the academy teaches that certain looks should trigger certain responses while on duty. Body language is one thing that officers will pick up on. Emotional intelligence does help us identify with rowdy behavior and the like. We are human. If we understand ourselves, certainly, we can have a better guess at another’s behavior. Again, it’s a guess. Better to ask questions to learn about another before jumping to conclusions.

How does that apply to the color of one’s skin? If you haven’t noticed, skin color cannot be changed like clothing. Nevertheless it is also used to categorize people. Again, we need to use our Emotional intelligence when it comes to differences of appearances. The next time you are in a situation when you begin to judge someone based on appearances, take a second to remind yourself that even you are not the clothes you wear or the car you drive, so the person you wish to judge isn’t likely to fit your initial judgement either. Take time to get to know people. Decide that individuality and diversity is beautiful. And since I mentioned old sayings at the start of this blog, Luke 6:31 ‘Do to others as you would have them do to you.’

Joy,
Cheryl

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“I learned this, at least, by my experiment; that if one advances confidently in the direction of his dreams, and endeavors to live the life which he has imagined, he will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.”
Henry David Thoreau

Where are you headed? In life, in your career, where you’ll spend your time? I imagined my recent vacation would be one of excitement and wonder. I, for as long as I can remember, had always wanted to see a redwood tree due to the pictures I viewed as a child. I am amazed at the height and vastness of the species. Living on the east coast all my life, I knew I’d have to visit the west coast to do so, and last week I had the most wonderful opportunity to see and touch one of these magnificent trees. The experience was a spiritual one for me; I noticed great feelings well up inside me and I shed a tear of gratitude as my friend snapped this picture.
What I learned about dreams that day inspires me to follow more of them as a way to feel like that again. A life lived in this manner would be quite a journey. Imagine if we all gained success by being adamant about attaining our dreams. Be confident, Thoreau says, in the manner of pursuit.
Press onward.
Lean into your dreams.
You may just live the life you really want.

Joy,
Cheryl

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No. You don’t have time.  (3 of 3)

Not too long ago I was riding in the car with a friend who impatiently tried to nudge the car ahead of her when the traffic light had just changed and proclaimed, “Hey, the light’s not getting any greener. What are you waiting for?”
Similarly, Incubus lyrics suggest we are waiting for “A Certain Shade of Green.”

My last two posts have been about change and discuss what may be holding us back. I’d like to take a few moments to focus on what a dear friend said to me recently, when in passing I impressed upon her that I had time to do something I wanted in life. She pulled me aside. Having lost her husband of 50 years, Ilse made herself perfectly clear. “No. You don’t have time” was her response. Within seconds I’d realized the magnitude of her statement. She’s right. None of us have time. She thought she’d have the rest of her life with her loving husband. Unfortunately, life isn’t a sure thing for any of us. Now is the time to do the thing we hanker to do. “Now, now, now. . .” I can almost hear the opening scene to Shakespeare’s Richard III. Obviously, the context is different; nonetheless, he began to take action for the changes he wanted make. I do not suggest we pine for greed or power. But what about that trip to Europe you’ve been wanting to take? How about that new business? Taking care of those pesky, extra few pounds? The thing you desire most that you’ve been putting off for one reason or another.

Sound familiar? We all go through it. The desire to be or do that thing just outside our reach. What are you waiting for? Certainly, you’re not waiting for permission. We talked about that last time. Are you waiting to be thin enough or have money enough or be good enough? Nonsense. You ought to do what you desire. You’ll find a way. Don’t provide excuses, more reasons to remain in your burning desires. Plan the steps it will take to bring on that trip, that new job or business, a slimmer you.

I understand changes aren’t easy. The reality is, some changes take a while to come to fruition; but even so, those steps will help you feel better as you move through your days knowing you’re on your way to having what you want. You might even become healthier performing the steps because you’ll move in the right direction toward your goals. Imagine the relief of paying off a credit card and saving for that trip. What a load off! Tiny steps to get over the mountain. In the meantime, follow the old cliche and take time to stop to smell the roses. This life is your journey. It’s all yours. Plan it as if you would your vacation. Remember though, there are no guarantees. The upside is while you aim for your goals, happiness seems to catch up to you prior to reaching those heights. No action keeps you where you are: self loathing and sitting with fears that you might not succeed.

Lucille Ball once said, “I’d rather regret the things I’ve done in life than regret the things I didn’t do.”

We ought to live on the edge of something we are about to create than repeat the same patterns to exhaustion.

I used to study ant behavior. One of the changes I like to do is to mix up my daily drive. Taking a different route helps to eliminate the etched trails we create on our roadways. Imagine what aliens, if they exist, would notice about our patterns. They’re not very creative. I’d surmise they’d think we have no purpose or clue what else to do. Of course the concept is silly; however, it makes sense to make changes and live the life we are meant to live. Funny, my auto-correct just changed my statement to: Live the life we are meant to love. I think I like that better. Love your life. If you don’t, determine what needs to change and take small steps to arrive at your place. Your “Ithaca.”

Here is a poem by Constantine P. Cavafy that may help you realize your journey.

Ithaca

When you set out for Ithaka
ask that your way be long,
full of adventure, full of instruction.
The Laistrygonians and the Cyclops,
angry Poseidon – do not fear them:
such as these you will never find
as long as your thought is lofty, as long as a rare
emotion touch your spirit and your body.
The Laistrygonians and the Cyclops,
angry Poseidon – you will not meet them
unless you carry them in your soul,
unless your soul raise them up before you.

Ask that your way be long.
At many a Summer dawn to enter
with what gratitude, what joy –
ports seen for the first time;
to stop at Phoenician trading centres,
and to buy good merchandise,
mother of pearl and coral, amber and ebony,
and sensuous perfumes of every kind,
sensuous perfumes as lavishly as you can;
to visit many Egyptian cities,
to gather stores of knowledge from the learned.

Have Ithaka always in your mind.
Your arrival there is what you are destined for.
But don’t in the least hurry the journey.
Better it last for years,
so that when you reach the island you are old,
rich with all you have gained on the way,
not expecting Ithaka to give you wealth.
Ithaka gave you a splendid journey.
Without her you would not have set out.
She hasn’t anything else to give you.

And if you find her poor, Ithaka hasn’t deceived you.
So wise you have become, of such experience,
that already you’ll have understood what these Ithakas mean.
Constantine P. Cavafy

Carpe diem! Seize the day!

Joy,
Cheryl

(1 of 3) Speaking of change. . .

This post will come as three parts:
Speaking of Change,
Don’t Wait for Permission, and
No. You Don’t Have Time.

Mt. Shasta

I’ve delayed in writing this particular posting as I have been deep in the midst of my own change. Typically, I like to throw myself into changes just to see how they work out. Get Your Wisdom On blog is one of the fairly recent changes to my scope of work. Writing this particular post hasn’t come as easily as I hoped, so I took some time to contemplate the reasons it’s taken more mustering than usual.

If you have ever embarked on a part of your journey that you’ve no comparison, it might seem that the path is difficult to navigate. I speak of a change that’s so foreign, you wonder why you should even attempt it. Ha, I suppose that’s the beauty of the new thing. Many of us have moved out of neighborhood or stepped away from a job that had become what seems like part us. If done often enough, that type of move can become banal and not worth the time spent thinking about it; we just do it. I don’t mean to demean this type of move, though. Changes like these can be complicated, as you take into consideration many aspects. You may ask yourself if your decision is the best one or not.
*Let me say:
The best decision is the one that is good for you right now.

You’ll know soon enough for sure; then you may make additional changes to make it fit your life.

Let’s get back to the choice you may make that will change everything you know and embark on an epic journey, the one you have never had an inkling of experience. We will never know our futures, nor will we ever be secure in our choice to make the plunge. What I mean is simply that the future isn’t certain. The road we’re on feels comfortable to us only because it’s familiar. Familiarity isn’t safe. If it’s a job change, we think because it pays a certain salary each week, it’ll be waiting for us forever. I’m going to play havoc with that belief system. Many people over the years have thought that job security exists. It doesn’t. Companies change. Those who run companies change their minds about how that company is run. You’re most often the chess piece used for the sport of making that company money. Yes, I know you’re loyal and you feel they’ll be as well. One can never really tell. My suggestion is to follow your dream.

If you plan to do anything in your life, realize that change is inevitable. And it is neither good or not good. It’s change.

What helps is to understand change and the fears that come with it. One of the keys is to embrace change no matter what.

Before you learned to drive a car, snow board, earn a degree, or anything new, you didn’t know how it would change you. Your choice enabled you to feel freedom, pleasure, or accomplished. Good things came from your change, but you didn’t know that at the time. You struggled through the beginnings of it. You might even had fears such as running off the road, falling over a snowy cliff, or failing miserably. But as you worked further, you found that you gained confidence. A lack of confidence keeps us from something we wish to attain through change. Exploring your fears helps to identify what holds you back from entering the door before you.
Do you think you’ll lose friends if you change? Do you think you’ll miss out on something else if you change? If you become successful at the new thing, who do you think you’ll hurt?

Think about this: change happens all around us each day. Most of these we accept without much thought. Technological changes are the norm. We expect the latest gadget to become obsolete within the next few months. Other changes are not so commonplace. In the US, the health care system is changing. In this instance, some of us will embrace it while others will resist.

What about changes we decide for our own lives?
Do we or should we resist our own desires if we feel the slightest fear of the unknown? Surely we’ve gone through other changes; and today we look back at what now seems trivial. We say, “Of course it can be done. I did it.”
How about how others will see us as we change? Do we often feel like we should ask for permission?

Read my next post entitled. Don’t Wait for Permission.