Sunday, October 30, 2011

Caring Too Much

And again one of my friends has given me the quote for my blog this week.  She said, "sometimes watching people you care for hurt is even worse than being hurt yourself. i care... too much."  I immediately saw myself in this revelation, and advised her to detach....sometimes we have to detach from others burdens, no matter how much we care about the person, we just can't keep watching, or listening.  Sometimes we just care too much to hear it over and over again, and have nothing changing.

I think we can all relate to this.  We have at one point in our lives been this person that rambles on and on about the same problem in their life but does nothing to fix that problem.  Or worse can't see a solution.  I know I have been that person, and am sometimes still, depending on the topic.  (see blog)   ;)

However with that said, most of us can also relate to the other side of this the friend with the two ears to listen, two shoulders to cry on, and if necessary a couple of arms to hold you with.  This is what separates your real friends from the ones that just don't get you.  Your real friends, no matter how much they may be sick and tired of you making the same mistakes, are still there for you when you crash and burn.  And thank the FSM that they are.  Because without them, you might not learn from the mistakes.  I have a real need to 'talk things out' when I've crashed and burned.....boy do I talk them to death.  And I know I tax my friends patience.  But I learn from that too.  I know they love me and I know they care, and when I've gone too far they tell me.  Do I listen?  You bet I do.  Does it appear that I've listened?.....sometimes not, because I still might need to talk, or cry, or be held.

I guess the best thing to remember is this, everyone heals differently, and everyone has had a shitty life with some really bad stuff happening to them.  Not everyones 'baggage' fits together.  And even though, as a friend, you may think your friend is crazy for still doing this to themselves, because YOU certainly wouldn't......STOP right there.  Because this is where true wisdom comes into play.....YOU can't know that for sure, because YOUR experience is not on the other side of this.....well, you might just need them in this capacity someday, and you'll be glad that you were there for them when they needed you.

I think real friendship can be summed up in this quote, "People cause suffering when they are suffering themselves. Alleviating their suffering will help them not hurt others."  As friends, when we listen, this is what we do, we alleviate suffering.  So pull up a chair, grab a box of tissue, if necessary, and LISTEN.  You won't be sorry in the end.  Because of your guidance, and support, your friends will find their way, and be there for you when you need it.

cheers, breathe deeply, and smile

Sunday, October 23, 2011

“Courage is not the absence of fear but rather the judgment that something else is more important than fear.” - Ambrose Redmoon

What a great quote.  I stumbled upon this one while having my usual Sunday morning ritual, and it hit me like a bolt from the blue.  This is so true.  Every change we make in our lives, every choice we get, we are faced with a fear.  Whether it is a rational one (is there such a thing?) or an irrational one, it is still fear.  Fear of change.   Another one of my favorite quotes:  "Its the fear of what comes AFTER the doing, that makes the doing so hard to do."

I have recently made a huge decision in my life and am about to follow it up with another.  And I was afraid of the first decision, mostly because it was a new experience.  I didn't know what to expect.  I'd read books, seen movies, and even talked with other people who had made the same decision.  After all I do my homework before I fall off the cliff.  Doesn't mean I'll make the same mistakes a they might have, doesn't mean it will turn out all bright and well worth it, like some of the others.  The only thing I can say for sure is that it took courage.  Courage that I didn't know I possessed.  And it made me realize how true it is that with great courage comes great fear.   And making this decision was more important than the fear.  That was my courage.  I had to try.  I had to see if it would turn out alright, if the feelings were real, if I could finally trust my instincts.

That brings me to my next big decision.  My next big bout of fear, that I will muster my courage up and make.  And with the coming dawn, I have done just that.  I've made a choice and I will stick to it.  This is not to say, that as a human I am capable of change, and of changing my mind at any time.  But that too, will come with fear and courage.

I have decided that I am more important than the fear.  That my happiness, and what I want out of life is more important the the fear of not knowing the outcome.  A friend asked me yesterday, over bloodies and banishment spells, "What would happen if you just didn't know?  What would happen if you just feel into a state of 'I don't know'?"  She had taught me that she used to believe that this state of mind was for losers, and people that couldn't make up their minds, because she used to be like me.  Always moving fast and making snap decisions.  Never just waiting and not knowing.  A recent tragedy brought her to this frame of mind and she realized that it wasn't just for losers.  That driven industrious people like us would never stay in that frame of mind forever....but sometimes, it feels good to just fall back into a sense of unknown, and not care about the outcome.  Wasn't sure I believed her, until i tried it this morning.
My next big decision, the one I made today...was it the right one?  I don't know.  And that feels good.  That change feels good.  It's not my burden now.  Its in someone else's hands now.  That sound you just heard was relief, and stress leaving my body in a woosh.  cool huh?

Sunday, October 16, 2011

And you think YOU'RE lonely.....

My Sunday morning ritual consists of waking up, jumping on facebook to talk to my Sunday morning friends, reading my horoscope, and daily tarot card, and PostSecret.  I love this site, and if you aren't reading it every Sunday you are missing out.  And usually I feel pretty alone in the world.  Not sure why....maybe because I'm an only child and I always knew that someday, my kids would grow up, and my parents would be dead or so far away I can't see them, and I'd be alone.  Maybe thats why I adopted my little brothers.  And maybe that's why I get so attached to my friends, and need them so much in my life.  I think if you have a large family, you might not understand this as much.  The feeling of solitude, even when surrounded by people that love you.

But even with that I stumbled upon a PostSecret this morning that made me stop feeling sorry for myself, and realize that I'm not alone, but this person certainly is.  It read:  "I wish I had a partner to cheat on, a lover to cheat with, and a friend to talk about it."
Wow.  Really?  Now THAT is solitude.  THAT is alone.....and sad.

And I realized that I've been weak and self involved about life.  Like maybe my life was the only one in an ego.  Life is about stumbling along and picking your way past the obstacles that  you are dealt. No ones life is easy.  No ones life is perfect.  No one is happy all the time.

I have a lot of friends right now going through the same thing.  I'm guilty of it too.  A dissatisfaction with their life, or the path they have chosen.  What once seemed rosy and lush, is now brambles and thorns.  And they long for a past road they left behind.  They remember the past with a fondness that brings warmth.  And while normally I would say this is all romantic drivel.  In this case it is not.  For as a group of friends, we did have it all.  We were close, and we truly cared about each other and our lives.  We talked about life, love, choices, or the world, over drinks or children playing on the floor, or D&D dice.....

Somehow, in all the last fifteen years or so, Time, Fate and Nature (I always blame them!) put choices in our path that separated us.  And now talking is stilted....difficult to get started....walls are high.  But I have a ladder.  And I will breach these walls.  And I will have everyone back in my life, even if its one on one, and not over D&D, or football Sundays (remember that?  don't you miss that too?) or kids playing on the floor, or in some cases those kids are now driving downtown.  I know you are there, and I know you read this....I miss you all. For the ones that are slowly coming back, I'm a phone call away.  For the ones still dragging their feet, and being over cautious, expect communication, for I can't let you all go....won't.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

The Enemy Within

"If you had a friend that talked to you the way you sometimes talk to yourself, how long would you allow that person to be your friend?"

Now there's a quote to stumble upon....And one I really needed to hear.  How long indeed.  Not long, if my history is to be believed.  I don't take that kind of crap from my friends.  I usually push them away when I don't feel like the friendship is two way, or when I feel like I'm being ignored or worse, used.  I also don't accept it when my friends beat me down instead of building me up, who would, right?  Well, unless they are telling me a glaring truth that I refuse to see, but then it's not beating me down, it's said in love, holding my hand and making sure I'm okay.

 But to constantly beat yourself down, to examine and re-examine all your bad choices, to force yourself to remember your failures and remind yourself that you never will succeed in love or business or life...what kind of friend is that?

Not the kind you would be to any of your friends, right?  Then why do it to yourself!?  And we all do, sometimes.  (Some more than others, and you know who you are....I'm one of you btw) Anyone that tells you they don't do this to themselves, or can't understand this, is lying.  They may not do it often, but they do, unless they are a sociopath, its human nature to question our past decisions and hold ourselves accountable.  This can really suck when you THINK you make the wrong decisions over and over again, when presented with the same situations.  (Fate to hand it to her, GREAT sense of humor.)  You are suppose to be your own best friend, NOT your best enemy.

If you can't have a good attitude about yourself everyday when you wake up alive and healthy, then you are missing out on the greatest gift of life.   LIFE.  YOU are ALIVE.  Another day on the planet, with another opportunity to make it the best day of your life.  And why not?  Just think about all those wonderful days in your past, you didn't see those coming before they happened, did you?  I didn't think so.  And if you live your life with the possibility that TODAY is the greatest day you will be much happier, worry less and guess what.....LIVE longer.  (thanks smashing the title that's two songs plugged in this blog for those of you that know music)

So your homework for the for the rest of your this simple act.  STOP beating yourself up for your decisions in life, and if you must self examine until you are dizzy, at least come up with a REASON for why you made the choices you did, and then learn from that reason.  And don't forget to grow.  Don't forget to practice what you have learned. (btw if you don't do this, this is when Fate throws the same choice in your path again....just so you know)   After all, the choices we have made and will make in life, make us the people we are.  And you need to love yourself, as much as your loved ones love you.  Really.  I know it sounds trite, but it's true.  If you don't believe me look at your loved ones and realize they wouldn't love you if you weren't fantastic.  So believe that you are. Or as a good friend of mine summed it up so nicely once to me last year....."Allow yourself to be AWESOME."  he's right.  Only you can stop yourself from being awesome.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Women Who Seek to be Equal With Men, Lack Ambition-Timothy Leary

What a great quote to start my week!  I am in a mostly male profession, selling insurance, and I'm the newbie.  So I am competing with men who have been doing this for decades.  And one of them is in the top five in our state and the other is number three in the nation on top of that.  So lets just say the competition is fierce.  We have our own territories...but lets be frank, they know people, and will not care where they are to get their goals.  And I guess neither do I.  And with all the competitive nature of this business I find myself trying to actually beat men for the first time in my life.  No I'm not a feminist, in fact most of the feminists that have spoken to me scare me...a lot.  But I do believe, with equal training, I can do anything a man can do, within reason.  Obviously I'm not as strong and never will be, so discounting anything requiring strength....I'm still of the opinion I should try.  So I am trying to be equal with these men....but is that the right thing to do?

Shouldn't I be trying to beat my personal goals, and make those goals as lofty as theirs?  Shouldn't I set my goals ahead of them, and have my record be the one to beat?  Shouldn't I set the standard and have them want to be equal with me?  It is possible, after all, anything is possible, if you want it bad enough, and then try to get it.  Activity and Action are what is needed.

Activity and action are not a problem in my life.  When I see someone or something I want, I usually go after it, without question, and without knowing much about it.  I'm a very verbal and visual that first off I'm attracted to what you say, and after that how you look.  Although I have to admit that the visual is usually the first thing that makes me, well....look... but after eye contact if what comes out of your mouth makes me cringe, the visual becomes less appealing by leaps and bounds.  This action helps me in my profession and in my life, as I'm a great listener, and can usually turn quite a phrase, and get people to listen to what I'm selling.

I've noticed this in my business life AND in my personal life.  When dealing with trying to convince my kids to 'do the right thing' or 'what they should be doing'  or with friends who are having difficult times or difficult pulls and pushes of their emotions.  They will come to me for advice, why?  I think it's because of my ability to 'sell' them the right conclusion for their problem.  Sometimes I use props, like tarot cards, or wine, or tequila, or a movie.  Sometimes I just hang out and listen.  But usually I'm never disappointed in what my friends or children choose to do after they have shared a problem with me.  I'm not completely successful in this.  Those of you who have been following this blog from the beginning will no doubt come up with one glaring disappointment, one man I wasn't able to convince to buy what I was selling.  But, his choice ended up being the right one...for now.  And I couldn't be happier for them...for now.

When I look back on my life I realize that nothing lasts forever and nothing is permanent.  So I do a lot of waiting and watching and listening.  I learn more from what you don't say than what you say, sometimes.  And I'm good at probing until I find the button that makes your lies fall away and the truth come out.  And not lies you tell to me, lies you tell to yourself.

So I've decided instead of trying to be equal with all the men in my life, I'm going to set the standard.  I'm going to have more ambition, and strive for my own personal greatness and see what life throws at me then.  I'm sure it will be another man that I'll try to be equal with, before I realize he came to me to become equal with me....but we all learn at our own pace.