Wednesday, April 12, 2017

What United Airlines Can Teach Us

How many things can one person reasonably work on effectively at one time? It’s not uncommon for many of us to over schedule our lives, like United Airlines over scheduled that flight we all saw in the media this week. The difference is, are you going to allow chaos to arise because you’re frazzled by too much on the schedule, and drag yourself through the proverbial aisle of life screaming, or, will you sit back and decide how you can better handle the situation? Clearly, we saw in the now infamous video that (not) utilizing care and common sense on the part of the corporate conglomerate, things went all the way wrong! I mean, sheesh, anybody with a computer and a keyboard can, and did offer far better solutions, which could have prevented the ensuing havoc.

Much more is to come of that situation, I’m sure, however, we can do better in our own lives. Instead of digging heads in the sand when there is too much on the plate, simply remove something. It’s possible people; we do not have to do Everything, at one time. There’s no rulebook that says so, and often competition with others, or self, is the very thing that prevents us from chillaxing a bit. Trying to do too much only causes stress and anxiety, panic attacks, and the such, it ain’t worth it. We need to learn to relax, even when we feel like there isn’t enough time, who are the time police anyway? Seriously, it is time to tell he/she/them to move on, and to get their own issues to manage.

It finally feels like Spring where I am, and with that, I’m not going to run by anybody’s clock today, including my own. If we don’t learn to enjoy the moments, before you know it, there won’t be anymore left to enjoy, or not.

Choose You

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

How Deep is Your Love

I had a great discussion with a group of girlfriends at book club this past weekend. The book was…eh, ok. Some of us loved it, some of us merely liked it, and a couple of us were confused by the widespread enthusiasm over the particular prose, outside of our little group. Even though I fell into the, it was so-so category, I can agree that there were some deep take aways, which led to a rather introspective, thought-provoking conversation. I suppose that’s what a good book club’s purpose should be. The questions surrounding the book lent itself to conversations about personal attributes and flaws that we found within ourselves, as well as how some of us see one another.

Which brings me to one member’s reflection about me. A comment was made that I present as having an “airy” personality. I took no offense, but I did pause in surprise, only because I consider myself to be quite deep, maybe not all of the time in presentation, but most certainly internally.  This begets the question, what’s more important, how others see you, or how you see yourself? Most of us, I surmise, hope that who we are authentically is projected to those we are around, and when we find out it is not, we may need to do a consciousness check and self-evaluate who we really are.  How deep is your love, for yourself? A true, deep love of oneself can’t help but be free from pretenses, and societal expectations of normalcy; a true love of self should be unafraid of the criticism of friends, especially if it helps to reveal a growth area.

So, am I airy? Naw, I don’t (think) so, but do I perhaps try to bring light to dark situations/conversations, maybe, sometimes. I also like movies for entertainment purposes only, not deep life-changing messages, sitcoms, some ratchet reality TV (some, not all.. I mean I do have some standards), but I also believe in and fight for educational equity, hate economic disparity, racial injustices, I’m troubled by the apathy of non-voters, abuse of children, and a myriad of other things. So, if Donnie and Marie could be a little bit country and a little bit rock-n-roll (shout out to the children of the 70’s), I guess I can be a little bit shallow and also deep, that makes me Human. How deep is your love?

Monday, March 20, 2017

Don't Let Regret Be the Ashes of Your Life

Death and taxes come for us all, isn’t that the infamous idiom? Well, I’d say it’s true, at least the former, I suppose taxes depend on who you are, whether you’re a member of the small elite class of one percenters, or the 45th leader of the free world, it’s questionable at the very least. What isn’t questionable is the fact that every one of our days is numbered, what that number is we do not know and when it will come to fruition, we aren’t aware. In the interim it’s best to try and fill the pages of our lives with hope and fulfillment. Stop wasting time waiting for the (right) time to make the move you’ve been planning in your head. It is only as hard as you make it, be like that famous shoe company, and just do it. Life is short and the older I get, the more real that statement becomes.

There is no reason to not be doing the things you really want to. Sure, we will have trials and tribulations, that’s inevitable, it’s how we handle those things that determine the trajectory of our lives. It is easy to wallow in self-pity and the woe is me’s, it takes work to get up from a fall, a setback, and push forward. It’s difficult, not impossible. Choose better for yourself. No one I know wants to get to the end of their life with a bunch of, if only’s and I woulda, coulda, shoulda’s, but it can easily occur just by wasting days, watching each one go by whilst watching others live out their dreams on realty TV, or via some other wasteful effort.

Don’t waste time being mad at others, or hating your job, make changes, you’re not chained to that desk, and anger towards others only eats away at your insides, manifesting itself into poor health and creating an overall bad attitude. I look at my own life and try to evaluate ways in which to make a better use of it, ways such as, being a better wife, mother, daughter, better in my career, etc. I try to do so also by moving in my gifts and using them to better my life and the lives of those around me, to complain less and laugh more, to eliminate worry and stress and instead to demonstrate gratitude for all the great things in and around me.

I leave each of you with that same charge to live better, before it’s over, because all of us get one shot at it, there are no do overs. Don’t come to the end of your life regretting decisions, actions, or the lack thereof. Live a full life, what is it you wish you were doing right now in life? What’s stopping you from doing it? Excuses take up unwanted space in our existence, eliminate excuses and replace them with solutions. Don’t let regret be the ashes of your life.

Sunday, April 24, 2016

3 Life Lessons I Learned From Prince

This past week the death of a pop icon, Prince, was a shock to most everyone. I know it took me by great surprise, and although I did not personally know him, I am still trying to reconcile his untimely death, and the fact that I will never have another opportunity to see him perform live in concert, nor will my children be privileged with the same. I am, however, grateful that I was able to see him on the Purple Rain tour, circa 1984 and again, just a year ago in Baltimore, believe me when I say it was Everything!

While I wrangle with the fact the he really is gone in my mind, and enjoy the numerous videos of him performing and interviewing, circulating around various social media circles, I am also struck significantly by the lessons he left behind, here are three:

1.     Live life to the fullest, whatever your dreams are, stop procrastinating and make them come to fruition. Prince truly lived a life worthy of the gifts bestowed upon him, his musicianship and writing skills have left a generation of those of us who grew up with him, and others behind us a legacy of not just great music, but an example of how to live, unabashedly in abundance. We all have gifts and a purpose and while here on earth, it is incumbent upon us all to discover what that purpose is, and to use our God-given skills to make manifest that purpose. Prince did just that.

2.     Have no fear of what others think; Prince clearly was a man who marched by the drum of his own beat. Too often, too many of us stop short of reaching our dreams, or even begin pursuing them because we are concerned about what others may think. Will our family or friends support us? If they do great, but what if they do not, maybe people won’t believe I am able to really do this thing, whatever this thing is, and there it is, missed opportunity because of the naysayers and haters in your life. Do you think Prince ever refused to write a song, or do a performance out of fear of what people would say or think? It’s highly doubtful; I mean it takes a lot of bravado to go out on stage in front of thousands with ass-less pants, seriously. We may not all want to do that, but the lesson here is live the life (you) want to live, and it doesn’t matter what anyone else has to say, worrying about the latter will keep you stagnant, and unfulfilled.

3.     Life is short. Well if this ain’t the truth. Prince was only 57 years old. He isn’t the first person that I’ve seen either via the media or in my own life, to seemingly die before their time, which in my estimation should be well into old age. Yet, it occurs, life is unpredictable, we may all hope to live well into our 80’s, 90’s or beyond but the truth is we really don’t know when our day will come. Armed with that knowledge, the last and most important lesson is to understand that whether a person lives to 30 or 80, life is short because it goes quickly, so don’t wait to (start) living the life you want, do it now! You have nothing to lose, except another day of life, of course.

I’ll end this post with a line from a favorite poem by Marianne Williamson..

”We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It is not just in some of us; it is in everyone.”

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Stop Taking It So Personal!

Why do you jeopardize your relationships, career situations, dreams, with trivial things? Too many of us take things far too personally, are too easily offended by minor infractions made by others, whether real or perceived. Doing so can seriously affect relationships we may have with significant others or friends, or perhaps career advancement and other opportunities over things that actually have no importance or relevance in our lives. When we allow such triviality to become prevalent in our lives, we have to ask ourselves, why? Why do we allow silly things to have impact on us emotionally, financially, and otherwise in our lives? When you find that you are the one offended by someone, before you react, ask yourself is it a real offense, something that truly requires your attention, or is it a triviality that should be ignored, and shelved away while you walk away to cool yourself off?  Also, ask yourself, what makes you so important that even the slightest infraction by someone upsets you? Self-importance can be blown out of proportion when we do not allow room for other people in our lives to make mistakes, which is inevitable because there is not a woman/man alive who can walk on water. Perhaps the problem is with the woman/man in the mirror. None of us like to view ourselves as flawed, but the person who can truly look introspectively within and recognize the blemishes, is the one who can maintain better, successful relationships with others, because they are not looking for perfection in anyone, including self. Before the next time arises that you opt to get twisted out of shape over ‘nothingness’, take pause and reflect on whether or not it is a moment to take issue with, or simple pettiness. Maybe it’s simply you who are the issue, don’t risk losing those you love, or those who are important to you in other ways over nonsense. Everyone has a tipping point; you don’t want to be the one to cause the spill.

Chillax and be at peace....