We all go through life leaving bits and pieces of ourselves everywhere around us to be found by anyone who comes across them; we are generally unaware that we do so since the majority of the legacies we leave behind we leave unknowingly. They may be a piece of litter or a $100 bill; a kind word or a curse; a gift of understanding and compassion or neglect and indifference. Some legacies we leave deliberately and, in general, these are things meant to help or educate those coming along behind us. It is the ones we leave though ignorance or unawareness of the impact we can have on others that can do damage. We must be aware that everything we do and say will or might be something that others will consider our true opinions and feelings about those around us or our surroundings. With this awareness we can judge what we do and say to be sure that we are leaving an accurate record and can alleviate misunderstandings. What is left of after we are gone, for a trip or forever, is all that will be remembered of us and if we care at all about how we’re thought of we’ll make careful choices about what we leave behind. Wouldn’t you rather be remembered in a positive way than as a negative person?
When there is plenty all around us, plenty of food, plenty of love, plenty of satisfaction, we seldom think of when there will be none. We may not even know what to do with the plenty we do have and only nibble around the edges of it, not recognizing its extent or its impact on us and our wellbeing.To accept the bounty offered us we need to strive to be observant and to learn to appreciate what we have. Many times we don’t see that the plenty around us is not there without effort, we don’t see that we have a responsibility to accrue and maintain what we’ve been given or have obtained with our own exertions. Once we’ve recognized that plenty we should not complain that it is not enough or begin to take it for granted; it would be best if we could learn to share our bounty with others, but if giving is not possible, we can make the best use of what we have and not waste it or throw it away unthinkingly. It is imperative that we make a choice to recognize and accept whatever plenty we’ve consciously or unconsciously acquired, we have no idea when or if there will be none. Shouldn’t we accept the plenty we have with grace and pass it along if possible?
Many of us find that it is easier to give up on what we would like rather than persisting in the way to our goals. Sometimes it feels easier to avoid a confrontation, sometimes it just feels like too much effort emotionally or physically, sometimes we just don’t want what we’ve chosen as a goal. Once we’ve chosen our goals, though, and started on the path to achieving them it can only make us feel worse about ourselves to let them go by the wayside. We can certainly rationalize our failure to continue, but we will still know that really have not given the journey our best shot. If we start out assuring ourselves that we will persist through thick and thin, and that we will not scorn help if it is offered, we have a much better chance of doing and completing what we set out to do. This may be easier for some goals than others, but the concept is the same and the outcomes can be the same whether we’ve made a goal to step outside for a moment each day or to write the definitive history of mankind. Of course, we must have carefully thought out our goals before attempting them. Don’t you feel better about yourself when you’ve completed what you’ve set out to do?
When we are beginning our day, especially if we know that it may be a stressful or intense one, we might consider taking a bit of time to reflect upon what really is upcoming; and reflect upon and internalize calm, contented feelings. It is easier to face stressful and hectic situations in a calm way by starting from a firm base of confidence and tranquility. Once we’ve grounded ourselves and taken on the idea of the responsibilities and tasks of the day we have them half-conquered already. Most surprises or unexpected twists and turns to the day can be dealt with prior to their happening if we hone our minds to sharpness by rising a touch earlier than usual to prepare oneself for almost any eventuality. When we’re running late and must hurriedly dress and run out the door we are thrown out of our usual routine and this can lead to disaster. Not only has our routine been hugely disturbed, we try to get back to it and usually fail by trying too hard to do so. Once one thing does not go our way we put ourselves in the path of mishap since we are no longer in places at times we are used to. Whether we meditate formally or stick to a set routine, we are better for both or either during our everyday lives. Doesn’t a calm, thoughtful beginning to the day lead to a more satisfying end to it?
Much of the time we choose to approach our tasks, whether they be leisure-directed, home-directed, or work-directed, from the side, at an angle, or even from behind. In many cases this works quite well. Coming at these myriad tasks or challenges indirectly gives us time to think and to plan before we must wind ourselves up to step or leap into action. At times, though, we are not given the time to stop and think before acting, we must forge ahead and trust our instincts and experience to guide us through an emergency or to guide us along a quickly changing path to a goal or accomplishment. At these times we must rely on the experiences others have had, good and bad, as well as our abilities to quickly recall our own experiences and ability to improvise. A time where quick thinking and quick action is necessary is not the time to stop to listen to advice from others or to stop to evaluate the entire situation and make a measured decision. This may not be how we accustomed to reacting, but is sometimes necessary to avoid worse consequences. We cannot stop to beat ourselves over the head for making a quick decision, we must work with what we have and if headlong action is what is required, so be it. Wouldn’t you rather act quickly when a choice is trust upon you than sit like a bump on a log?
When we are confronted with something or someone new we often retreat into ourselves a bit or get defensive. Thoughtful observation may do more for us than a knee-jerk response that might tend to reject the newness and consider it as something unappealing or even wrong for us. If we make our observation close and calm we might find that we’ve come across something important and valuable and rather than rejecting it, we could embrace it and learn something about our world and other worlds. Thinking and learning are never negative things, especially if are open to exploration and are tolerant of things differently than the way we are used to learning and thinking about things. Once we’ve opened our minds any number of possibilities for positive change or reinforcement of things as they are become possible, but we must be willing to think, without strong negative or positive bias, so that we can make choices knowledgeably or allow ourselves to enjoy what we see of the world around us. Thinking and being thoughtful are often viewed as being sad or negative, changing that viewpoint to quiet appreciation could do much to change the view that the act of thinking is a positive and enjoyable part of life rather than one that embodies sadness and devotion to a serious down feeling. Wouldn’t you rather look at thinking as a positive and pleasurable part of life than a necessarily somber thing to do?
Most of the time we find it comforting or are filled with relief when we can put something or things in their proper places. We put them in surroundings that help to define them for us and allow us to interact, emotionally and physically, whichever is needed, in a fashion that allows us to feel in control of the situation and ourselves. Sometimes things don’t always fit the frame in which we’d like to put them. This can be traumatic for us if we let it be, but it might be that the course to take is to evaluate the object and the frame before becoming unglued or frustrated. If we let them be, things have a tendency to show us what kind of frame they’d like to occupy and if we attempt to make things fit as we’d like them to we may be creating a situation where all parties are unhappy and uncomfortable. Taking a moment to step back and evaluate your attempt may let you see that another frame might fit the object and the situation better and may allow you to see things in a different manner as well; and that is positive too. For wouldn’t you rather be able to see things from many perspectives rather than just one?