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Brave : New Year Goals & Dreams

Can you believe it is a New Year’s AGAIN???  Where did 2017 go?  Actually, I don’t really care where it went – I just want it gone.  It was a pretty dreadful year.  Seems like everyone had it tough, in one way or another, and that the Universe was plotting against us by making kooky, crazy, scary and random things happen.  To be fair, the Universe does that all the time, but this year it seemed to just say “Ah, to hell with it!’ and just chucked everything it could at us.  Probably serves us right – maybe we needed some more wake up calls.  Especially me, I always sleep in 🙂

This was, until five seconds ago when I deleted all the text I’d spent ages typing, a very long post about my resolutions for the new year.  The usual stuff about losing weight, being more sociable, being a better housekeeper etc.  But I am actually feeling that those things are all part of the bigger picture of me just trying to be better than I am now.  And the majority of the things I want to change about myself all hinge on one thing, or my lack thereof : bravery.

I’m not very brave.  I am basically scared of everything.  In some ways, I guess that makes me braver than I think I am, because instead of curling up in my bed and staying there forever (which is what I really want to do pretty much every day lately), I get up and go out into the world.  Which is scary for me.  Always has been.  I don’t understand the world and it doesn’t understand me.

This week was hard.  I had to make decisions that were difficult and upsetting and made me feel horrible about myself and my judgements.  I don’t like hurting people, but this week I had to do that to someone who was hurting me.  And then it made me question whether or not they actually were hurting me, or if my fear and lack of courage was affecting my perception of the situation.  But I had to stand up for myself and that was hard.  I don’t do it often and it is not a comfortable feeling for me.  I am generally more at ease backing down or tolerating things, even if the other person is in the wrong.  So instead of feeling good about standing up for myself, I feel horribly sad and guilty and keep wondering if the other person is ok.

I had another situation where I had to be assertive (a man had left his dog in a hot car and he he did not take kindly to me suggesting that he move the car, or preferably the dog, into the shade) and it ended up with me in tears and, frankly, afraid that I was going to get punched in the face.  I did not feel victorious or proud of myself.  I felt scared and small and again questioned whether I was in the right.

I had to assert myself at work too – in front of a bunch of colleagues – and that was very difficult also.  Again, I was in the right, but it felt very wrong to stand there and say “Excuse me, but that is my responsibility I have to ask you to let me handle that”.  I ended up apologising to the person afterwards because I felt so rotten about it, even though I was only stating what was true and defending my own job.

So, if I am to pick one resolution for this year, it is to be brave.  And to stop apologising for having feelings and opinions and ideas of my own.  And to make the hard decisions when I have to, and stand by them.  And not let my fear of losing people stop me from standing up for myself and my own needs and values.  And, most importantly, to embrace change and not fear it.  I feel like this year is going to be a year of change and I have to be ready for that, one way or the other.

So, here’s to bravery and self-belief.  And to standing up for what you believe in.  And to not letting someone else tell you how you should live your life.

Thank you for reading – Happy New Year to you all.  May 2018 bless you with many wonderful experiences, and the courage to embrace them all.  Be kind to one another and yourselves this year.

x

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That’s iced tea, by the way, not wine…
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Quote for the Day : Give the World Your Best

“…People are illogical, unreasonable, and self-centered.
Love them anyway.

If you do good, people will accuse you of selfish ulterior motives.
Do good anyway.

If you are successful, you win false friends and true enemies.
Succeed anyway.

The good you do today will be forgotten tomorrow.
Do good anyway.

Honesty and frankness make you vulnerable.
Be honest and frank anyway.

The biggest men and women with the biggest ideas can be shot down by the smallest men and women with the smallest minds.
Think big anyway.

People favor underdogs but follow only top dogs.
Fight for a few underdogs anyway.

What you spend years building may be destroyed overnight.
Build anyway.

People really need help but may attack you if you do help them.
Help people anyway.

Give the world the best you have and you’ll get kicked in the teeth.
Give the world the best you have anyway…”

— Mother Teresa

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Spoonfuls of Love & Kindness

Anyone else feeling the world is an icky place to be right now?  I always try really hard to focus on all the good and not dwell on the bad, but it’s becoming increasingly difficult.  I feel so anxious about what the future holds, don’t you?  Do we even have a future?

When feeling this way, I just want to curl up in a giant cookie, suck my thumb, and pretend the world’s not there.  The next best thing to doing all of that is crafting.  I can lose myself in paint and glue and paper and the chaos of my craft room.  Sucking of the thumb is not advised during this time as it will usually be covered in all manner of art mediums, but cookies are allowed, as long as they’re washed down with copious amounts of tea.  Some music on the stereo, a nice warm cardi, and I’m all set.

This weekend I worked on this collage piece.  It’s quite pink for me, but maybe I was chanelling my inner child and wanting some comfort and cuteness.  Maybe that was just the colour I grabbed first (after culling all my papers a few weeks back, I am now a bit low on supplies…might need to go shopping ,hee hee!) and it has no emotional ulterior motive at all.  Whatever, I am quite pleased with this one.  It came together so quickly (for me, Mrs Snail-Pace) and I like its sentiment and theme.  I can see there’s a couple of spots I need to touch up (not outlined or finished off completely) but I will do that before  varnishing.

I do think kindness is the most important quality a person can have.  I think it creates a foundation for everything else.  If you’re inherently kind, you won’t judge people, or be intolerant.  You will put others first and not seek to oppress or demean anyone.  You will strive for the greater good, and help others to do the same, by your example. There is strength in love, and it should never be seen as a weakness.  Love and kindness should be encouraged in schools, and in churches and in our community.  Instead of someone getting three million “likes” because they achieved the perfect duck pout or showed their boobs or bought a new handbag (the cost of which would probably feed three families for a month), we should be applauding those that do good.

We should be celebrating kindness and spreading love and compassion.

Anyway, I am getting on my “be nice” high horse again.  I had a lovely weekend – caught up with an old friend, spent time with my family and brand new baby nephew, and did lots of crafting.  I had time to myself, and time with loved ones, which is the perfect balance.  I nested and baked and slept and tried not to think about the outside world.

Hope you experience, and share in, some love and kindness today x

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Quote for the Day : Love is My Heart

“…Love is an afternoon of fishing when I’d sooner be at the ballet.
Love is eating burnt toast and lumpy gravy with a big smile.
Love is hearing the words ‘You’re beautiful’
as I fail to squeeze into my fat jeans.

Love is refusing to bring up the past, even if doing so would be a slam dunk to prove your point.
Love is your hand wiping away my tears, trying to erase streaks of mascara.

Love is the warm hug that extinguishes an argument.
Love is a humbly-uttered apology, even if not at fault.
Love is easy to recognize but so hard to define; however,
I think it boils down to this…

Love is caring so much about the feelings of someone else, you sacrifice whatever it takes to help him or her feel better.

In other words, love is my heart being sensitive to yours…”

— Richelle E. Goodrich – Making Wishes : Quotes,
Thoughts & a Little Poetry for Every Day of the Year

(Happy Valentine’s Day, everyone.  The world needs a lot more love than it currently possesses – so try not to be cynical today.
Embrace and share love, in whatever way you can.
It’s never been more important than this moment in time.)

x

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Quote for the Day : This is What Should be Done

This is what should be done
By one who is skilled in goodness, And who knows the path of peace:
Let them be able and upright, Straightforward and gentle in speech,
Humble and not conceited, Contented and easily satisfied,
Unburdened with duties and frugal in their ways.
Peaceful and calm and wise and skillful, Not proud or demanding in nature.
Let them not do the slightest thing
That the wise would later reprove.
Wishing: In gladness and in safety, May all beings be at ease.
Whatever living beings there may be; Whether they are weak or strong, omitting none, The great or the mighty, medium, short or small,
The seen and the unseen,
Those living near and far away,
Those born and to-be-born — May all beings be at ease!

Let none deceive another, Or despise any being in any state.
Let none through anger or ill-will wish harm upon another.
Even as a mother protects with her life her child, her only child,
So with a boundless heart Should one cherish all living beings;
Radiating kindness over the entire world: Spreading upwards to the skies,
And downwards to the depths; Outwards and unbounded,
Freed from hatred and ill-will.
Whether standing or walking, seated or lying down
Free from drowsiness, One should sustain this recollection.
This is said to be the sublime abiding.
By not holding to fixed views, The pure-hearted one, having clarity of vision,
Being freed from all sense desires, is not born again into this world.

— Buddhist Prayer

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Quote for the Day : Hints of Kindness

“…Because my responses are more than just words.
They represent
who I am,
who I want to be,
and how I will someday be remembered.

Today I will not respond perfectly. I know. But if strive to communicate with hints of kindness and traces of love…
That will be something
That will really be something
That could mean more than words…”

— Rachel Macy Stafford
(See full quote HERE as seen on Marc and Angel Hack Life)

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