There are many different ways to describe the word homemaker though the traditional one seems to still be defined as being a woman and staying at home with the couple’s children while the children are young. In addition, homemaker also seems to imply that that same woman also does all the housework, food shopping, gardening, and general handyman tasks. There are some who would quibble and say that we have much less rigid, in terms of gender roles, definitions of words like homemaker. That may be true, but for a large part of the population defining roles such as the homemaker’s role more fairly does not mean that they are performed more fairly. There are plenty of people who will defiantly say they are not going to change their values just to be politically correct and there are at least the same number, probably more, who will pay lip service to making a change toward equality who won’t really consider it for themselves or their family. Promoting equality of labor and duties in the home is quite difficult since home means so many different things, as do equality, duty, proportion, balance, and work outside the home must be taken into consideration too. Wouldn’t it be better to let the responsibility for defining ‘homemaker’ go back to those who are making the home?
If you’ve ever watched a pair of skaters, or a well done classic ballet, or a fun and riveting marching band, part of the excitement and enjoyment is marveling at how well anywhere from two to hundreds can work together and appear to be making no effort to create any atmosphere they choose. It is natural to assume that these people must be close, must do many things together, and agree on most major issues; but that is not necessarily the case; in fact there are well-known couples in many of the creative fields that spend virtually no time together aside from occasional practicing. There are large performing groups that have never seen each other before their first performance and the chosen venue. This is not to say that it takes no effort to make a performance look effortless, but that there are extraordinary connections between some people who bridge the gap of personal likes or dislikes. Those who would like to strengthen their bonds might try a tandem something; if they don’t already have naturally strong ones, working hard at becoming a team will surely grow them. In any case, creating a mood or expressing oneself as part of a group acting in tandem is an amazing experience. Do you think you would like to experience that feeling more?
When there is something that someone wants, and wants badly, the general impulse it to go after it with everything you’ve got. The trouble is that though effort and persistence are needed to achieve your aim, too much trying or too much doggedness can lead to failure; and this can lead to the loss of excitement and healthy challenge that can make you truly excel and meet or exceed your expectations of yourself. A key to achieving ultimate success is to know yourself and your strengths and weaknesses, then to set goals and create your expectations within your ability to accomplish them without lending too much credence to others’ opinions. Only you can make any close to accurate judgements regarding your ability or lack of ability to contend with or reach for a specific thing and only you can make choices about what is success, what is almost success, and what has been a good try. If you bite off more than you can chew it is generally because you haven’t listened to what you really have to say to yourself or because you are acting on impulse, not giving considered thought to your choice. Will you be thinking before making any resolutions this year?
For the most part we go about our activities performing individual tasks even when we are working as part of a group either for, business purposes, or as a leisure activity. There are times when one person cannot finish a task without help, but again, generally the task is broken up into individual, manageable pieces. However there are other things that simply cannot be accomplished when working alone or in conjunction with others; we need to work together in unison (and at the same time, too) to achieve the communal goal. Or we may need to have more than one person observing something to verify its existence or completion. Or we may want to entertain others and must perform our allotted part synchronized with our fellow performers. We can make the choice to opt out of acting in unison with others, but not only will that be a disservice to others, it is also depriving us of the completion of something we may very much want. If we choose to synchronize our actions and activities with others for the good of all involved, we must give it our best effort to ensure success and not depend upon others to all the work. Isn’t a job well-done and completed with others a satisfying experience?
We may think that through no fault of our own we have become involved in a situation or are held by circumstances in a position we do not like and have not chosen. Once we look more carefully at where we are and how we came to be there we may find that this not entirely the truth of the matter. Our choices can bring us to a place where we are so entwined with others or with our own thoughts it looks to us as those we have no further choices. When we are in that place instead of remaining there and blaming our position on fate we can and should recognize the fact that we still have choices we can make that will free us from our entanglements, but that can happen only if we truly want to be able to make our own choices. A clear look at the choices we’ve made from the beginning of out situation up to the present can show us other directions to go. We may find that other directions are difficult or painful and we must ask ourselves if enduring some pain or difficulty is worth the end result. For only we are truly able to direct the course of our lives and it is our responsibility to do so. Isn’t freedom worth the pain or difficulty we must go thought to maintain it?
No matter how much we might try, there are some times we cannot achieve what we have set out to do. Whether or not we like the outcome, we must deal with not obtaining what we have striven for. This can be difficult when we truly believe that we deserve to have that which we’ve taken the time and effort to strive for. We know, of course we know, that there are things we can dream about but that will be forever out of our grasp. We should not waste our time, emotions, and physical effort on these craving these emotional, physical, and personal things even though they may seem made for us and our goals in life. As an exercise in futility they are wonderful, but they might be taken as an exercise in self-restraint and as a reality check that can direct us back to the attainable. The attainable is not second best, it is a goal, or series of goals, that can give us challenges, but also much more satisfaction than yearning after unrealistic goals. It is also not to say to stop striving at all, just to objectively look at how you’ve constructed your goals and to come to conclusions that are not the equivalent of grasping at bubbles, for they will burst. Aren’t realistic and challenging goals more satisfactory to achieve than ‘pie-in-the-sky’ goals you cannot achieve?
It makes no difference what part any of us plays in our families, groups, communities, or the world, we all want to leave our mark on the world in some way. The need to show we’ve been there, whether when we’re traveling in distant places or through different cultures, or whether we’re writing the great world novel or epic poem, or discovering the cure for all ailments, having attempted to make a difference is something we all have in common. The majority of the marks we’ve left have been helpful, beautiful, and positive. However there are those who destroy, maim, or otherwise harm us all by their actions. It is a great shame that those marks seem to be the ones to make the most impact, or at least to receive the most publicity. Very little credit or recognition is given to great works of art or great accomplishments in medicine or science, past and present; just as essentially no credit is given to the individual for his or her contribution to their portion of the world or to the world at large. Perhaps if we all made an effort to recognize the daily efforts the people around us make we would promulgate an atmosphere of appreciation instead of disrespect. Wouldn’t a respectful world be easier to live in and preserve?