When did kindness go out of fashion?

While taking a late night Facebook scroll, I counted six posts within seconds that asked people to ‘please be kind when responding’ to questions that seemed quite sincere in requesting advice.

The people placed trust in an online community, hoping that someone else experienced what they are currently enduring and could offer some words of wisdom.

Repeatedly the plea was made for kindness, asking others to reply in a gentle and compassionate manner.

Continue reading “When did kindness go out of fashion?”

On being your own best friend.

Do you find yourself irritated by selfish partners, friends, and family? Upset because as much as you reach out to them, remembering their important events and what ails them, it’s never reciprocated?

Here’s some tough love. It’s not them. It’s you.

If you find this happening not once, but again and again – what’s wrong with you? Why do you continue to put effort into those who care nothing about putting effort into you?

Yes, we accept people for who they are but at some point, we should cut our losses. We should seek to find partners and friends who meet us where we are. Who step up and be present in our lives. Because it goes both ways.

And if one way is all you’ve been experiencing, maybe it’s time to reconsider your relationships.

At the end of each day, you need to be your own best friend. That’s who you have at the end of any day – and a pet, if you’re so fortunate. Most, not all, people are inherently selfish.

Learn how to thrive alone. Learn how to channel your energy into activities that make you feel good – and give back to the world at large. Appreciate your solitude and manage your time wisely.

Stop focusing on those who continuously let you down and remember – you’re the only one who will be there for you at the end of each day.

What is Memorial Day?

There is confusion among some on the difference between Memorial and Veterans Day. Ask a child today what the difference is and many don’t know. Something to do with veterans. Something to do with the military. Something to do with flags.

I respect anyone who tries, anyone who respects our military and those who have served and sacrificed. I respect those who fly the flag, even if they’re unaware of proper protocol. I respect the fact that they are patriotic and harbor a love for country and national pride.

Continue reading “What is Memorial Day?”

Stop. Read. Respond.

People don’t read anymore. I’m not talking books or newspapers, magazines or periodicals. I’m talking emails, texts, and social posts. They may see the words, yet they fail to comprehend.

It seems some are pruned to pick out key words – then string together their perceived intent of a message. Or, they respond impulsively, seeing one word then jumping to conclusions.

It’s a pet peeve, and a big one, and I’m far from perfect. There’s been a time or two – maybe many more – when I’ve read too quickly, responded even faster, and missed the point. Despite my best efforts, I’d failed.

But it’s occasional, not habitual, and it seems that ‘not reading’ is the new norm.

I experience it at work as well as with personal and social correspondence. I see it even more as I peruse social media, people arguing back and forth because one or the other didn’t comprehend – or consciously read – the message put forth.

We’ve become a society of humans that don’t read to comprehend.

We rush through our emails and countless messages, then respond to check off a box – done. I responded.

We are harried and believe multi-tasking is a requirement, not an option.

We want to overachieve and in turn, we wind up not doing anything really well – even though we’re doing it all.

May we slow down and even dare to stop, read, then respond. Nearly 100% of the issues in life arise from not reading, not listening, or lacking the courage to speak-up and communicate.

When opportunity knocks …

Summer Fridays were never my thing because it meant I could stop working early. I was not a fan of lunch breaks either, but I did love the post-work social hours that ran way too late into some nights. Work hard, play hard.

Work is something that I grew addicted to at a young age. As a child, I operated a pretend office rather than play with dolls. Accompanying my grandmother to the local stationery store was one of my favorite outings, purchasing sales receipt books and other business supplies. Forget Barbie! Sitting at the cherry executive desk when my father worked part-time delivering office furniture was better than any trip to Disney World in my opinion. I felt a surge of adrenaline and pleasure, at the ready to strike a deal or two in my vivid imagination.

Continue reading “When opportunity knocks …”

Bringing the Five C’s into our Daily Lives.

There was a time in my life when I appeared uptight, yet I wasn’t. Well, maybe a little bit but I would say reserved, not uptight. Today I’m as outgoing as ever even though I’m an introvert by nature, a walking paradox.

As down to earth as I am, however, I do believe that there is a time and place for certain things. I also believe in decorum and manners, humility and gratitude. I’m not a fan of obnoxious behavior, rude people, or inappropriate heckling – goes back to time and place. I think we should learn to sit with discomfort, afford ourselves the opportunity to build coping skills and well, grow up. I think boasting on social media about your good deeds comes across as attention seeking rather than promoting the generosity of your heart. And as I follow current events and witness how people on all societal levels speak and act, how they treat each other, I find it rather disheartening.

This is certainly not a holier than thou post. It is not filled with piety or judgment, but rather a perspective based on observations.

What seems to be lacking is civility, courtesy, compassion, communication and collaboration.

Continue reading “Bringing the Five C’s into our Daily Lives.”

Aging – gratefully.

Sometimes I wonder if writers are telepathically connected because often, it seems that we percolate on a like subject simultaneously. Today was one of those days.

Early this morning, I happened past a post about Melissa Gilbert and aging gratefully. How I could relate yet not having had the time to read the message in depth, I perused just enough to plant the seeds of thought at the start of my day.

Mid-day during a stretch break, I had the good fortune of seeing an article published by a fellow writer and lovely human, and made the time to read it. Ironically, it was on aging and how we trade the beauty of youth for sage inner beauty.

Never should we fear, loathe, or regret aging – some are denied the privilege, as the saying goes. Birthdays are a gift and every day is a blessing, no matter what our age.

It’s not without its woes, that’s for sure.

Continue reading “Aging – gratefully.”

When you keep beating your head against the wall, look in the mirror.

There’s a great meme floating around social media that reads: “When you persist in being bothered by someone who refuses to change, you also refuse to change – truth be told.” 

Who can relate?

What a simple, yet poignant, statement.

People show us who they are. People reveal themselves through their actions, not their words. People may invest the bare minimum in a relationship, akin to making sure one has some balance in a bank account, so it doesn’t close, but rarely give more.

Yet we fight it. Whether we are delusional or want to believe the best, we keep trying to make some relationships work. We long for more than we will ever get. And we hope and pray old patterns will change – yet they never do. We fight the inevitable and it’s not a battle with the other person. It’s a battle with ourselves.  Continue reading “When you keep beating your head against the wall, look in the mirror.”

Everything in moderation, including moderation because – life’s short.

Those who know me are well aware that my definition of socializing is chatting with friendly people when running errands. People tend to talk to me and I am not shy when it comes to engaging, or initiating if there is something that deems conversation worthy. Visit a few stores, talk with some pleasant folks then it certainly qualifies as an official night out!

Waiting in the supermarket checkout line, I inched forward in an attempt to get what I referred to as the ‘thing-a-majiggy’ and the lady ahead of me knew exactly what I meant – the ‘whatcha-ma-call-it.’ The artfully decorated cake in my basket led to chatter about life’s celebrations and I proclaimed that any occasion was an occasion for cake to which she responded, ‘But after dinner, of course.’ Absolutely not 100% of the time!

Sometimes it’s before dinner – and sometimes, it is dinner. We may sneak a piece during the day or sliver a slice as a snack. We may even cut some for breakfast, followed by our multi-vitamin because surely our decisions aren’t necessarily nutritious or healthy ones – but those decisions are ours to make. We are grown-ups. We’ve earned the privilege of tossing some rules right out the window, and I can think of many.

Life is short. We should moderate everything, including moderation. We say it. We buy signs that proclaim it. We tout the message, yet rarely do we live it.

We find ourselves bogged down by the can nots and should nots. We are plagued by potential guilt and shame. We get so caught up in these things that they become life itself – and that takes up way too much mental space and stands in the way of what? Enjoying our lives!!

I’m the queen of it, so no preaching here. Maybe I’m nudging myself because I say it, buy the signs, and tout the message – but sometimes I forget and lose too much time restricting myself, judging myself, and not living in the way I believe every one of us should be – and we can’t get that time back. It’s gone, forever.

Yes, there are things we need to improve upon. There are habits to be broken. There is a need for some control and restraint so that we don’t become selfish, reckless hedonists. We need to honor our conscience, yet respect our true selves.

But we can have cake before dinner. Not every day, but some days – and we should let go of certain rules that actually hinder the joy of living rather than celebrate our very existence.

Reframe your thinking and start living today.

Got faith? Our world needs your prayers.

It’s the holiest time on the Christian calendar – the Easter Triduum, three days commemorating the crucifixion, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

It’s also Passover, a major Jewish holiday that celebrates the Biblical story of the Israelites escape from slavery in Egypt.

Rocket attacks and airstrikes in Israel, Lebanon, and Gaza. Another school shooting in Nashville. Racial discord. Gender issues. Mental health crises. Addiction. Leaders and politicians who conduct themselves like high school cliques.

It’s disheartening, sad, and seems to be spiraling out of control right now – everywhere. Not just in America, but around the globe.

As I sat in church last evening, I reflected deeply. At anytime, anywhere – anyone could walk through the doors in places of worship and cause mass destruction. How could they? Why do they? None of us are safe.

Last weekend I sat in a school cafeteria, watching the kids interact and go about their day, doing the things that kids do. I reflected deeply. How could anyone, for any reason walk through the doors of a school and murder, or injure, any child, any human being? None of us are safe.

It’s heartbreaking and we, as a society, as a world, need all of the prayers we can get. Hug your loved ones, appreciate every moment, and if you have it in you – pray. Pray for peace. Pray for unity. Pray for a better tomorrow.