A New Year…

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I am looking back on the past year.  It has been filled with challenges, despair, and blessings.  I remember hearing something to the effect of “going day by day, everything looks the same but when you look back, everything looks different.”  That is indeed true!   It is totally amazing how life goes by and when we stop to reflect, we start to realize all the accomplishments we have done along with all the failures that drove us to be better people!

The lesson I have learned from the past year is this:  Life is too short, it ain’t worth it to sweat over the small stuff, and to live as honestly as you can!

I wish you all a Happy New Year and to continue to be your best no matter what the situation is!

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Letting Go and Letting God (universe)

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I have heard this expression numerous times and never thought to apply this to myself. Most of my life, I did not truly believe that the Universe really does bring to reality what I desired. I always felt I had to be in control of every aspect of my life. I could not deal with the idea of just letting things happen…

The result of my need to control:
1. Failing marriage
2. Loss of passion for life
3. Loss of motivation at work
4. Mountains of emotional baggage I’ve carried around.

I eventually broke down and allowed myself to purge all negative experiences, mindset, and perception. It was a very painful and harrowing yet at the end, I felt so much more lighter when I finally said to myself, “Let go and Let God…” With that statement, I truly surrendered myself to what the Universe has in store for me.

Well, I’ve been amazed at the past few days and how by simply shifting myself from the need to control to being at peace with myself, so much more love, compassion, and good has entered my life! I also learned that things happen and the difference between it being a negative or positive experience is in how I respond to it.

I am thankful daily for this important lesson!

Peace be with you all…

Letting Go and Letting God (universe)

Tags

, , ,

20131207-150952.jpg

I have heard this expression numerous times and never thought to apply this to myself. Most of my life, I did not truly believe that the Universe really does bring to reality what I desired. I always felt I had to be in control of every aspect of my life. I could not deal with the idea of just letting things happen…

The result of my need to control:
1. Failing marriage
2. Loss of passion for life
3. Loss of motivation at work
4. Mountains of emotional baggage I’ve carried around.

I eventually broke down and allowed myself to purge all negative experiences, mindset, and perception. It was a very painful and harrowing yet at the end, I felt so much more lighter when I finally said to myself, “Let go and Let God…” With that statement, I truly surrendered myself to what the Universe has in store for me.

Well, I’ve been amazed at the past few days and how by simply shifting myself from the need to control to being at peace with myself, so much more love, compassion, and good has entered my life! I also learned that things happen and the difference between it being a negative or positive experience is in how I respond to it.

I am thankful daily for this important lesson!

Peace be with you all…

Litmus test: Texas hold’em poker

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I am writing now as I play in a Texas hold’em poker tourney. While playing, a thought came into my head: poker is truly a litmus test of your emotional and mental state.

For those of you who are or aren’t famiar with poker, it is a game of skill with about 20% luck factored in. Why a game of skill? This game is geared towards playing against other people, being very observant of other people’s behaviors and betting patterns.

I’ve noticed that when I’m not in an optimal emotions and mental state, I SUCK at poker and find myself grasping at straws. However when I’m totally at peace with myself and remain very observant, I play winning poker.

Therefore, when I see a good game or tournament at a casino, I constantly look within myself and ask myself if I’m in the right state to play. Sometimes I ignore what’s going on and end up losing then I would reflect on my session and realize it is my own downfall, to play in a poor state.

Therefore, I take great care now to meditate and bring myself to a state where I can think clearly, play correctly, and accept if I get beat then move on to the next hand.

I’ve played for about seven years and am known to be a formidable player at times. Other times I play like a fish and that’s only because I was in a bad emotional or mental state.

So in summary, I strive to be at my best with peace in myself in anything I get involved in. Therefore: poker is always a good litmus test for what mental/emotional state I am in.

For those of you out there, I encourage you to go out and try the game of Texas hold ’em !

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Litmus test: Texas hold’em poker

Tags

,

I am writing now as I play in a Texas hold’em poker tourney. While playing, a thought came into my head: poker is truly a litmus test of your emotional and mental state.

For those of you who are or aren’t famiar with poker, it is a game of skill with about 20% luck factored in. Why a game of skill? This game is geared towards playing against other people, being very observant of other people’s behaviors and betting patterns.

I’ve noticed that when I’m not in an optimal emotions and mental state, I SUCK at poker and find myself grasping at straws. However when I’m totally at peace with myself and remain very observant, I play winning poker.

Therefore, when I see a good game or tournament at a casino, I constantly look within myself and ask myself if I’m in the right state to play. Sometimes I ignore what’s going on and end up losing then I would reflect on my session and realize it is my own downfall, to play in a poor state.

Therefore, I take great care now to meditate and bring myself to a state where I can think clearly, play correctly, and accept if I get beat then move on to the next hand.

I’ve played for about seven years and am known to be a formidable player at times. Other times I play like a fish and that’s only because I was in a bad emotional or mental state.

So in summary, I strive to be at my best with peace in myself in anything I get involved in. Therefore: poker is always a good litmus test for what mental/emotional state I am in.

For those of you out there, I encourage you to go out and try the game of Texas hold ’em !

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LIving Out Your Choices

Hi all…

I am in a place where I am thinking about how I can create reality for myself.  I have spent my entire life doing what i was taught to do.  Unfortunately, I have come to a place where I can see that my heart and mind are in a constant struggle.  I have pretty much lost everything because I allowed my mind to rule my life.  This morning, I got up with the intention of going to work.  When I stepped into the shower, I relished the warm spray of water and then a random thought floated into my mind and it instantly stressed me out.  What was the thought?  It was “I have to go to work and do all the things I’m supposed to do.”   Why did this instantly stress me out?

First, let me explain what I have been going through.  I have been following in the path of the masses…getting a so-called good job and working hard to be good at what I do.  I am a state employee in a managerial position. I am bound to work and abide by all state policies and procedures.  Unfortunately, I work at a school and I come into many situations where the state polices come into conflict with the work I do which is with children in a residential setting.  I aspire to give the residential students an environment in which they can flourish and learn in leap and bounds.  I have often questioned myself in whether my standards were to help one child or ten children to succeed.  I used to love my job and the challenges it presented.   I have endeavored to present different ways of viewing the care-taking of children in a residential setting only to run into obstacles in the form of resistant staff, me being resistant, and state bureaucracy.  I have been in this job for 17 years and I am now at the point where I am starting to question all the beliefs I had held and tried to apply to my job and to my life.  Because I was in the mindset that what I was taught was to be accepted as the absolute truth, I slowly dug myself into a rut because I was not willing or courageous enough to question those beliefs.  Thus, the result 17 years later is a feeling of dread each day and instant stress when I wake up on a workday.

What does this lead to?  This forced me to face the inevitable:  Am I truly living according to my values and desires.  After closer introspection, I realized I was not doing so and I was living “small”.  I realized that all the stress and agony over being the idea of doing well at my job and trying to live up to the expectations of my staff, co-workers, and my supervisors as well as my parents has taken a toll on my emotional and spiritual well-being.  I have lost onf of the most wonderful people in my life (my partner) because she could not understand how my mind was functioning and could not understand why she could not supersede all the negative thinking that was going on in my mind associated with failure and a lot of self-flagellation.  Now, I find myself alone and not liking it at all.  I managed to go through each day thinking I needed to show that I could handle it.  The fact that I am deaf and had something I needed to prove to everyone that I could be on equal footing with those who could hear did not help at this point.  It only served to speed up my own demise.   Ultimately, I crashed and from that point, I realized that I had been spending my entire life trying to meet the expectations of everyone except my own and with each experience, it only left me more empty and needy.

As I go through the recovery process, I come to understand and accept that I am the only one responsible for all my actions and that as I become more self-aware, the less I feel the need to live up to the expectation of others.  I become more comfortable with the idea of living only to my expectations and desires and that I am truly free of any kind of expectation or rules imposed by others.  It is easier said than done but once practiced in small steps, it does indeed brighten up the path ahead of me and increase my faith in myself to just do what I want to do, regardless of my past choices or future consequences.  Just the mere idea of having the freedom to make choices based on what I know today is a fantastic thing to have.  I have choices in front of me and this is a time in my life where I know I need to make a shift in order to reconcile with my true self in order to live fully.  This is a big step and scary because I don’t handle not knowing what happens in the future well.  I accept this and tell myself to have faith in myself and to go with what my heart tells me to do.  I realize that it is so much easier to stay in the same place I have been out of fear yet I know what the cost will be to me:  a dead soul.  I am choosing to live fully as possible therefore I know I cannot stay in the same place I am.

I thank you all for reading this post and would love to hear from you your own experiences of pivotal events in your own lives.

Namaste….

Living For Myself

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What does it mean, living for myself?

I’ve struggled with this because of all the conflicting messages I get from society, friends, and family.

I grew up being taught that I should not be selfish and should always be considerate of others. I tried that and it became so ingrained in me that I actually have no idea what I want for myself.

I also tried to be the person I thought my partner wanted me to be. The same happened with friends. Unfortunately, I lost myself in the process and it has become distasteful for me at this point.

I also did many things I’m not proud of and in hindsight, those things I did because I felt out of alignment with my own personal values that I became dishonest with myself and others. As a result, in attempts to keep myself aligned with my own values and balancing with values of others, I actually became depressed and was in a constant state of confusion. This created a world in which I imprisoned myself in perpetual confusion and chaos, preventing me from seeing what I really wanted to do.

Amid the chaos and unnecessary pain, I realize now that I am no longer bound by anyone’s rules except my own. This is the only way I can realize my life’s potential and to finally move on. I realize that my rules may come into conflict with others’ and that there eventually will be tensions/conflicts. I happily accept this because it means I am living for myself and no longer capitulating to the whims or desires of others.

For those of you out there, I wish the same for you – to live your life as you truly want it to be. Do not be a captive of your own limiting beliefs or others!

Peace be with you.

“Living with integrity means: Not settling for less than what you know you deserve in your relationships. Asking for what you want and need from others. Speaking your truth, even though it might create conflict or tension. Behaving in ways that are in harmony with your personal values. Making choices based on what you believe, and not what others believe.”
-Barbara De Angelis

Entitlement – Do we have a right to it?

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Events of recent have made me consider the term “entitlement” and scrutinize the circumstances surrounding people who claim to have rights to entitlement.

Let me give a bit of a background…I recently experienced a situation where I sat in a meeting listening to employees moaning and groaning about one small part of their job that they didn’t like (this task requires 4 hours of their time outside of their normal work hours).  I gave them the opportunity to have a forum to discuss this particular task and to come up with ideas on how to share responsibility on this task. Instead, all I got was:

“I do not like doing this but I see other staff are motivated to do this so why don’t you assign this task to those people and I will do my tasks that I like.”

My response:  You all are here because you applied for this job and if this is too much for you to do, then you have a choice on whether to stay in this job or not.  You all were hired because I saw wonderful qualities in each of you and your willingness to be dedicated to your job.  I certainly hope that you all understand that there are tasks in each job that is detestable but can be worked through quickly so more energy may be focused on the enjoyable tasks.

“I have to come in to do this task and it interferes with my family plans and it is contributing to the downspiral of my morale.”

My response:  I’m sorry to hear about the hardship it is creating.  This is a matter of perspective – allowing this one minor task to overshadow the other great parts of the job and again, you do have a choice on whether you want to stay here or not.

“I expect to work Mondays through Thursdays and not have to do that four hours of that particular task.  It should be assigned to another department.  It is not fair to us.”

My response: I see that you desire to have ideal work hours.  Our situation does not permit for that.  (I then went on to explain the history of this task and how it was always under our department).  I shall ask other departments to see if this task can be assigned, but knowing the situation, the answer from them may not be optimal to you.

Coming away from this meeting, it struck me that the work ethics have changed quite a bit.  When did employees suddenly develop this sense of entitlement and the right to decide what tasks they shall do or not do?  Is it just this workplace or is it happening everywhere else?  What happened to the good sense where employees understand that they were hired to do their jobs and that their entitlement has to be earned through hard work, dedication, and respect to the system?  Is it the fault of American culture that promotes the decay of the family unit, the American culture that encourages countless lawsuits over minor incidents, the American culture that allows the government to shut down for 14 days because fewer people cared enough to vote in the right representatives of their government?

I am racking my brain for the answer…the only thing I can come up with is this:  Our American culture has decayed into a state where certain things that were taken for granted 30 years ago has fallen by the wayside.  For example, it was unspoken 30 years ago that we did not raise our voice to our elders and our bosses as a sign of respect.  Another illustration: We know we cannot expect to instantaneously attain full knowledge in life at the ripe old age of 20-25…our knowledge comes through experience and with that, we know the customary route to working our way up is to start at the bottom and learn the ropes without whining and to have a strong desire to learn and expand.  This doesn’t seem to be the case with the younger generation (based only on my experiences – you may choose to differ with me).  Final point:  the current generation seems to expect instant gratification and this may be the result of several things: how we reinforce younger generation through reinforcement, the quick progress of technology where practically everything is at our fingertips, and so on.  

Entitlements

My statements above is based my own perspective and experience.  I realize that not everyone may have the same experiences I have.  Yet, I have this strong dread that our conceived work ethics of 30 years ago appears to be a dying culture.  I say this because I live in the city and I see too many things happening in the schools and on the streets and it gives a sense of desperation that the culture I once knew may be disappearing.  However, I hold out hope that our society will eventually see the error in its way and correct itself.  The way to do it is to help one person at a time and to remain steadfast in our values and pray it will be contagious to others through living by example.