You’re only a stranger once

Archive for May, 2013

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Best relationship

A relationship with yourself is the closest and most important relationship you will ever have. So pay attention to it, develop it, nurture it, and never, ever stop.

Things to Stop Doing to Others

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There is one key factor that can either damage your relationships or deepen them.  That factor is your attitude.  If you’re hoping to grow and maintain positive relationships in your life, read on.  Below you will find a 20 step attitude adjustment guaranteed to help you do just that.

  1. Stop holding grudges. – Grudges are a waste of perfect happiness.
  2. Stop complaining. – Instead, use your time and energy to do something about it.
  3. Stop meaning what you don’t say. – People can’t read minds.  Communicate regularly and effectively.
  4. Stop making it all about you. – The world revolves around the sun, not you. Take a moment to acknowledge this truth on a regular basis.
  5. Stop lying. – In the long-run the truth always reveals itself.  Either you own up to your actions or your actions will ultimately own you.
  6. Stop blaming.  – Blaming others accomplishes nothing.  Either you own your problems, or they will own you.  Your choice.  When you blame others for what you’re going through, you deny responsibility – you give-up your power over that part of your life, and you annoy everyone around you in the process.
  7. Stop doubting. – If you think that you can’t achieve something, I have some news for you, you’re probably right.  But don’t let your self-doubt interfere with other people’s dreams.  Remember, the one who says it can’t be done should never interrupt the one doing it.  
  8. Stop interrupting. – Correcting someone when they’re blatantly wrong is one thing, but always interjecting your opinions out of turn gets old fast.
  9. Stop being selfish. – You get what you put into a relationship.  Nothing less, nothing more.
  10. Stop judging. – Everyone is fighting their own unique war. You have no clue what they are going through, just like they have no clue what you’re going through.
  11. Stop gossiping. – Gossiping about others is a lose/lose situation.  It hurts them, and then it hurts your reputation.
  12. Stop making promises you can’t keep. – Don’t over-promise.  Over-deliver on everything you do.
  13. Stop being defensive. – Just because someone sees something differently than you doesn’t mean either one of you is wrong.  Keep an open mind.  Open minds discover great things.
  14. Stop comparing people to others. – No two people are alike.  Everyone has their own strengths.  We are only competing against our own selves.
  15. Stop expecting people to be perfect. – ‘Perfect’ is the enemy of ‘good.’  And genuine ‘goodness’ is hard to find in this world.  Don’t overlook it.
  16. Stop trying to be everything to everyone. – It’s impossible.  But making one person smile can change the world.  Maybe not the whole world, but their world.  So narrow your focus.
  17. Stop screwing people over just because you can get away with it. – Just because you can get away with something doesn’t mean you should do it.  Think bigger.  Do what you know in your heart is right.
  18. Stop making mountains out of molehills. – People make mistakes.  Crap happens.  There’s no reason to stress out yourself and everyone around you because of it.  One way to check if something is worth mulling over is to ask yourself this question: “Will this matter in one year’s time?”  If not, then it’s not worth worrying about.
  19. Stop being dramatic. – Stay out of other people’s drama and don’t needlessly create your own.
  20. Stop giving out advice, and just listen. – Less advice is often the best advice.  People don’t need lots of advice, they need a listening ear and some positive reinforcement.  What they want to know is already somewhere inside of them.  They just need time to think, be and breathe, and continue to explore the undirected journeys that will eventually help them find their direction.

And remember, your relationship with yourself is the closest and most important relationship you will ever have.  So pay attention to it, develop it, nurture it, and never, ever stop.

5 Things to Stop Doing and Start Doing for Yourself

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When you stop doing the wrong things and start doing the right things, almost anything you want and everything you need comes within reach.

Which means it’s time to…

5 Things to Stop Doing

1.  Stop stalling and being lazy.

You can’t build a good reputation or a successful way of life based on what you could do or might do someday.  The quality of your life is in direct proportion to your commitment to get things done, regardless of your chosen path.

So don’t sit there and say, “Somebody should really do something about that someday.”  Be that somebody, and make today the day.

2.  Stop neglecting your self-control.

Nobody ever wrote down a plan to be broke, lazy, out of shape, uneducated, etc.  These things happen when you lose your self-control.

Showing a lack of self-control is in the same vein granting authority to others: “Perhaps I need someone else to help control me.”  And if you’re lucky enough to have good friends and family, they might try.  But the truth is no one is going to look out for you every second.  No one is going to follow you around and say, “Don’t buy that, get off the couch, take a jog, go to the library, etc.”

You, and YOU ALONE, must make the choice between what is right and what is easy in your life.

3.  Stop looking outside yourself.

The problem is that when you think you have to LOOK for things in life like love, meaning, and inspiration, the LOOKING implies that these things are somehow hiding behind some bushes somewhere, just waiting to be discovered.  But that’s not the case.

In life you have to CREATE your own love, define your own meaning, and harbor your own inspiration.  This process starts on the inside, not somewhere else.  Much of this can be accomplished simply by staying true to your values, pursuing your passions, learning more today than you knew yesterday, and helping others smile as you go.

4.  Stop letting negative people drain you.

You might think being alone makes you lonely, but that’s not entirely true.  Being surrounded by the wrong people is the loneliest place in the world.

Before you diagnose yourself as an unhappy person, first be sure that you are not simply surrounded by negative people constantly trying to bring you down to their level.

5.  Stop belittling your efforts and your progress.

Appreciate where you are now and keep fighting for where you want to be tomorrow.  You are not a failure until you give up on yourself.  Keep going!

Hard times may hold you down for awhile but they will not last forever, and when all is said and done, you will be able to stand even taller than those who didn’t earn it.

Seriously, you may not be where you want to be yet, but look how far you’ve come.  Be thankful that you’re not where you used to be.  If you have no other testimony right now, you have this one: “I’m still here trying.”

5 Things to Start Doing

1.  Start living.

Don’t simply exist in this world, grab life’s full potential by the horns and ride it out.  Dare life to be all it can be.  Make it a memorable, gripping account of accomplishment.  Make it a thrilling, challenging, bold adventure.  Make life a passionate, enduring, poetic romance.

Whatever it is you decide to do with your life, LIVE it!  Get going!  Move forward, aim high, plan your takeoff.  Don’t just sit on the runway.  Adjust your attitude and gain some altitude.

2.  Start taking chances that feel right.

Life will try to break you sometimes; nothing and no one can completely protect you from it.  Remaining alone in your comfort zone won’t either, for endless, stagnant solitude will also break you with yearning.

You’re human.  You have to love.  You have to feel.  You have to strive.  You are here to risk your heart by putting it into something you believe in.  If you avoid taking these chances, one thing is certain, you will make is safely to death someday, feeling empty and unfulfilled.

3.  Start indulging in meaningful challenges.

What a true blessing it is that there is always work to be done.  Because the real value of any accomplishment is not in the end result, it is in the process of accomplishment.

Success is a state of mind, and the most reliable way to reach that state is by working mindfully through a meaningful challenge.  Such a challenge might seem somewhat overwhelming when you first encounter it, yet as you progress through it, you transform the work from overwhelming to fulfilling.

4.  Start nurturing your real family.

Family is built with love; it’s not determined by marriage certificates, divorce papers, and formal adoption documents.  Families grow from the heart, through mutual love and respect.  The only time family becomes nullified is when the ties in the heart are cut.  If you cut the ties, these people are not your family.  If you build the ties, these people are your family.  So build ties with the right people and nurture them with love.

5.  Start making time for YOU.

There is objective time meant for focused work, but also subjective time where the pulse of your life breathes – your relationships, your awareness, your hobbies, etc.

So find the time – the time to read, to smell the flowers, to take a walk in the wilderness, to share a laugh, to learn a fun craft, to try a new recipe, to explore somewhere new, to really be with someone you love, to paint your dreams, or even to just do nothing and relax for a while.

Find time for YOU.

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What is Love

Love is not just about finding the right person, but creating the right relationship. It’s not about how much love you have in the beginning, but how much love you build until the end. A relationship should be healthy, caring, loving, kind, upbeat, and positive. It should make your smile a little wider and your life a little brighter.

According to my opinion.

what about you?

what/how would you say love is???

Commandments for Happy Relationships

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Happy, healthy personal relationships are one of the greatest joys of life.  So starting today, choose to take control of your relationship with your significant other.  Here are my suggested ten commandments to follow together.

1. We will remember that every person and relationship is different.

People don’t fall in love with what makes you the same; they fall in love with what makes you different.  Be your imperfectly perfect self.  We are not perfect for everyone, we are only perfect for those select few people that really take the time to get to know us and love us for who we really are.  And to those select few, being our imperfectly perfect self is what they love most about us.

Don’t compare your relationship to anyone else’s – not your parent’s, friend’s, coworker’s, or that random couple whose relationship seems perfect.  Every couple makes their own love rules, love agreements, and love habits.  Just focus on you two, and making your relationship the best it can be.

2.  We will listen to each other openly, without judgment.

It’s far too easy to look at someone and make a snap judgment about them.  But you’d be amazed at the pain and tears a smile hides.  What a person shows to the public is only a small fraction of the iceberg hidden from sight.  And more often than not, it’s lined with cracks and scars that run all the way to the foundation of their soul.

Never judge.  Learn to respect and acknowledge the feelings of your significant other.  Pay close attention to them.  Be present.  We don’t always need advice.  Sometimes all we need is a hand to hold, an ear to listen, and a heart to understand.  There is a time to speak out and a time to remain silent.  True wisdom comes from knowing the difference.  And this difference can make or break a healthy relationship.

3.  We will say what we mean and mean what we say.

Share what is going on in your mind and heart.  Share your deepest thoughts, needs, wishes, hopes, and dreams.  Open communication and honesty is vital to healthy relationships.  Give the people in your life the information they need, rather than expecting them to know the unknowable.

Information is the grease that keeps the engine of communication running.  Start communicating clearly.  Don’t try to read other people’s minds, and don’t make other people, especially your significant other, try to read yours.

4.  We will support each other through good times and bad.

Be there through the good, bad, happy, and sad times – no matter what.  Be willing to provide a listening ear, a hug, and emotional support in all circumstances.  Trust that you can count on each other, and be available not only when it’s convenient, but when you need each other the most.

5.  We will be loyal.

True love and real friendship aren’t about being inseparable.  These relationships are about two people being true to each other even when they are separated.  When it comes to relationships, remaining faithful is never an option, but a priority.  Loyalty is everything.

6.  We will live by the truth.

Inner peace is being able to rest at night knowing you haven’t used or taken advantage of anyone to get to where you are in life.  Lies run sprints, but the truth runs marathons.  Run a marathon.  Live so that when others think of fairness, integrity and reliability, they think of you.  

7.  We will spend quality time with each other.

Make time for each other.  With our busy schedules we often forget to relax and enjoy the great company we have.  In human relationships distance is not measured in miles, but in affection.  Two people can be right next to each other, yet miles apart.  So don’t ignore someone you care about, because lack of concern hurts more than angry words

Carve out special time for just the two of you once a week.  Do something fun.  Spend time together talking, going on dates, and making each other laugh.  Not only is it true that laughter is the best medicine, but it’s also true that shared laughter can make a good relationship great.

8.  We will appreciate each other and help each other grow.

Having an appreciation for how amazing your significant other is leads to good places – productive, fulfilling, peaceful places.  So be happy for them when they’re making progress.  Cheer for their victories.  Celebrate their accomplishments, and encourage their goals and ambitions.  Challenge them to be the best they can be.  And be thankful for their blessings, openly.

9.  We will settle disputes peacefully.

Not much is worth fighting about.  Heated arguments are a waste of time.  If you can avoid it, don’t fight.  Step back from arguments with your loved ones.

When you feel anger surging up and you want to yell that vulgar remark on tip of your tongue, just close your mouth and walk away.  Don’t let your anger get the best of you.  You don’t have to be right or win an argument.  It just doesn’t matter that much.  Give yourself some time to calm down and then gently discuss the situation.

10.  We will love and respect ourselves as individuals too.

Our first and last love is self-love.  Don’t rely on your significant other, or anyone else, for your happiness and self worth.  Only you can be responsible for that.  If you can’t love and respect yourself, no one else will be able to either.

Accept who you are completely – the good and the bad.  And make changes in your life as YOU see fit – not because you think anyone else wants you to be different, but because you know it’s the right thing to do, for you

Rules for Being YOU

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Be yourself.  Trying to be anyone else is a waste of the person you are.  Embrace that individual inside you that has ideas, strengths and beauty like no one else.  Be the person you know yourself to be – the best version of you – on your terms.  And above all, be true to YOU – if you cannot put your heart in it, take yourself out of it.

Starting today…

  1. Get your priorities straight. – Twenty years from now it won’t really matter what shoes you wore today, how your hair looked, or what brand of jeans you bought.  What will matter is how you loved, what you learned and how you applied this knowledge.
  2. Take full responsibility for your goals. – If you really want good things in your life to happen, you have to make them happen yourself.  You can’t sit around and hope that somebody else will help you; you have to make your own future and not think that your destiny is tied to the actions and choices of others.  
  3. Know your worth. – When someone treats you like you’re just one of many options, help them narrow their choice by removing yourself from the equation.  Sometimes you have to try not to care, no matter how much you do.  Because sometimes you can mean almost nothing to someone who means so much to you.  It’s not pride – it’s self-respect.  Don’t expect to see positive changes in your life if you surround yourself with negative people.  Don’t give part-time people a full-time position in your life.  Know your value and what you have to offer, and never settle for anything less than what you deserve.
  4. Choose the right perspective. – Perspective is everything.  When faced with long check-out lines, traffic jams, or waiting an hour past your appointment time, you have two choices:  You can get frustrated and enraged, or you can view it as life’s way of giving you a guilt-free breather from rushing, and spend that time daydreaming, conversing, or watching the clouds.  The first choice will raise your blood pressure.  The second choice will raise your consciousness.
  5. Don’t let your old problems punish your dreams.  – Learn to let go of things you can’t control.  The next time you’re tempted to rant about a situation that you think ended unfairly, remind yourself of this:  You’ll never kill off your anger by beating the story to death.  So close your mouth, unclench your fists, and redirect your thoughts.  When left untended, the anger will slowly wither, and you’ll be left to live in peace as you grow toward a better future.
  6. Choose the things that truly matter. – Some things just don’t matter much – like the kind of car you drive.  How big of a deal is that in the grand scheme of life?  Not a big at all.  But lifting a person’s heart?  Now, that matters.  The whole problem with most people is, they KNOW what matters, but they don’t CHOOSE it.  They get distracted.  They don’t put first things first.  The hardest and smartest way to live is choosing what truly matters, and pursuing it passionately.
  7. Love YOU. – Let someone love you just the way you are – as flawed as you might be, as unattractive as you sometimes feel, and as unaccomplished as you think you are.  Yes, let someone love you despite all of this; and let that someone be YOU.
  8. Accept your strengths and weaknesses. – Be confident being YOU.  We often waste too much time comparing ourselves to others, and wishing to be something we’re not.  Everybody has their own strengths and weaknesses, and it is only when we accept everything we are, and aren’t, that we are able to become who we are capable of being.
  9. Stand up for YOU. – You were born to be real, not to be perfect.  You’re here to be YOU, not to be what someone else wants you to be.  Stand up for yourself, look them in the eye, and say, “Don’t judge me until you know me, don’t underestimate me until you challenge me, and don’t talk about me until you’ve talked to me.”
  10. Learn from others, and move on when you must. – You can’t expect to change people.  Either you accept who they are, or you start living your life without them.  And just because something ends, doesn’t mean it never should have been.  You lived, you learned, you grew, and you moved on.  Some people come into your life as blessings; others come into your life as lessons.
  11. Be honest in your relationships. – Don’t cheat!  If you’re not happy, be honest, and move on if you must.  When you’re truly in love, being faithful isn’t a sacrifice, it’s a joy.
  12. Get comfortable with being uncomfortable. – Life as we know it can change in a blink of an eye.  Unlikely friendships can blossom, important careers can be tossed aside and a long lost hope can be rekindled.  It might feel a little uncomfortable at times, but know that life begins at the end of your comfort zone.  So if you’re feeling uncomfortable right now, know that the change taking place in your life is not an ending, but a new beginning.
  13. Be who you were born to be. – Don’t get to the end of your life and find that you lived only the length of it; live the width of it as well.  When it comes to living as a passionate, inspired human being, the only challenge greater than learning to walk a mile in someone else’s shoes, is learning to walk a lifetime comfortably in your own.  Follow your heart, and take your brain with you.  When you are truly comfortable in your own skin, not everyone will like you, but you won’t care about it one bit.
  14. Never give up on YOU. – This is your life; shape it, or someone else will.  Strength shows not only in the ability to hold on, but in the ability to start over when you must.  It is never too late to become what you might have been.  Keep learning, adapting, and growing.  You may not be there yet, but you are closer than you were yesterday.

We Determine the Value of Every Hour

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Our lives are measured by the value we provide to others.  This value arises from the things we spend our time doing.  And since time is quantified in hours, the value of our lives is equivalent to the sum of every hour we spend.

Opportunities to provide value are everywhere.  Some of them are anticipated, while others blindside us at midnight on an idle Tuesday.  Whether or not we choose acknowledge these opportunities is up to us.

How have you spent the last hour of your life?

What Money Can’t Buy

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You aren’t wealthy until you have something money can’t buy.

Here is my collection of what I  believe money, No matter how much you have, can’t buy.

  • A First Kiss from Someone Special – The sweet rush of butterflies in your tummy when you kiss someone special for the very first time.
  • The Realization of True Love – The warm feeling you get many years after your first kiss when you realize you married the right person.
  • Beauty – Because beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
  • True Friendship – Through thick and thin, they stood by your side.  They were there when you had nothing but them.
  • Peace of Mind – It can only be acquired with an honest heart.
  • Beginner’s Eyes – You’ll never see it again for the very first time.
  • The Joy of Telling an Interesting True Story – One of the most enticing roles we lead in life is that of a storyteller.  There are few things more satisfying than telling a true story that others enjoy listening to.
  • Happiness – True happiness is achieved by doing what you love and being involved in something you believe in.
  • Success – Success is simply excelling at doing what you love.
  • A Single Moment of Time – Once it’s gone, it’s gone.  Don’t miss it.
  • A Baby’s Laughter – Babies don’t care about money.  They care about kindness, love, and living in the moment.
  • Surprise Encounters with Long-Lost Friends – You haven’t seen them in years, and you figured you’d probably never see them again.  Then suddenly, there they are standing right in front of you.
  • The Feeling of Self-Accomplishment – You set your sights on a specific goal and followed through until you achieved it.  Now that’s something to celebrate.
  • The Sound of Raindrops Outside – …as you snuggle up on the couch.  Few sounds are more soothing.
  • A Good, Genuine Conversation – Those moments of verbal bonding when the topic of conversation flows seamlessly and all parties involved gain as much as they put in.
  • An Unexpected Compliment – It seems like just another dreary Monday afternoon, but then she walks into your office and says, “I love your shirt.  That color looks great on you.”
  • The Feeling You Get When Your Idea Works – You’ve been struggling to resolve a complex problem all day, but you just can’t seem to get it right.  Filled with frustration, you decide to try one last idea before calling it a night.  You’ve had many ideas before that failed miserably… but this time it works.
  • Randomly Hearing Your Favorite Song – You’re stuck in bumper to bumper rush hour traffic, so you crank on a radio station for a little distraction.  The opening notes to your favorite song instantly chime in.
  • Watching a Live Blooper Unfold in Front of You – As you walk alongside a friend, she trips over her own feet, wobbles erratically, regains her balance, and then tries to play it off like nothing happened.  Hilarious!
  • A Sunny Sunday Afternoon – The birds are chirping, a light breeze in blowing through your hair, and the sun’s rays are warming your cheeks.
  • The Rush of Adolescent Love – Those magical moments of adolescent lust and affection that only you and one other person rightly remember.
  • Being In The Right Place at The Right Time – You’re sitting in the nosebleed seats at a professional baseball game.  The home team batter cranks a monstrous, game-winning home run.  The ball bounces off another fan’s glove two seats in front of you and lands right in your lap.
  • The Recollection of Great Childhood Memories – Do you remember the first time you learned to ride a bike?  What about wrestling with your dad?  Or climbing trees with your friends?
  • Reminiscing About Old Times with Your Best Friend – Those crazy life experiences only the two of you lived through together.  Like that wild 24 hour road trip to Atlanta, or that drunken night on the 3rd floor balcony of your college apartment.
  • Passion – True wealth comes naturally to those who follow their hearts.  You can’t pay someone to be emotionally passionate about something.  Nor can you pay them to psychologically give-up on their passions.
  • Objects of Sentimental Value – Old family photos, your great grandmother’s music box, that painting your baby brother made for you… some things are priceless.
  • The Comfort of an Old Familiar Smell – You just pulled into your parent’s driveway after being away for a long while.  You smell familiarity in the air, the scent of the pine tree in the neighbor’s yard.  As you head through the front door, more familiar smells consume your senses.  Gosh, it feels good to be home.
  • The Hilarity of an Inside Joke – You’ll never get it unless you were there at its inception.
  • Amazing Talents You Are Born With – Like the mind of a genius or the voice of an angel.
  • The Excitement of Making Someone Else Smile – Because her smile makes you smile back.
  • Exercising Your 5 Senses – Sight, hearing, smell, taste and touch.  Each provides a gateway to rewarding personal experiences.
  • Sharing a Good Laugh with Friends and Family – Some of the most memorable moments in your life will be moments spent in laughter.
  • The Warm Coziness of Your Own Bed – No bed is more comfortable than your own.
  • Watching Wild Animals in Nature – Like a hawk gracefully soaring above the tree line, or a deer prancing across a grassy field.
  • A Home – Money can buy a house, but not a home.  Because home is where the heart is.
  • Waking Up to the Smell of a Home Cooked Meal – You were still asleep, but someone special knew you’d be hungry soon.
  • The Peaceful Sound of Absolute Silence – Shhhhh…
  • Streams of Consciousness and Clarity – You’re ‘in the zone!’  Act while your mind is hot.
  • The Sound of a Light Breeze Through the Trees – It’s the sound of Mother Nature all around you.
  • The Captivating Experience of People Watching – The interesting (and sometimes foolish) things people do never ceases to please.  You can’t buy this quality of entertainment.
  • Watching the Sunrise and Sunset with Your Beloved – Make time for this.  It’s worth it.
  • The Sound and Sight of Ocean Waves – Another phenomenal act of Mother Nature.
  • The ‘Pump’ After a Great Workout – You feel like you can conquer the world.
  • The Blissful Act of Daydreaming – Just being… and thinking… and dreaming.
  • When She Says “I Love You” – …and you know she means it because you can read the sincerity in her eyes.
  • When an Unlikely Someone Remembers Your Birthday – A friend you haven’t seen in over a month calls you at 9AM on your birthday just to say “happy birthday.”
  • Finding Something You Thought You’d Lost Forever – You searched for it for days and finally gave up.  Now, six months later, it basically appears right in front of you.
  • The Inspiration Behind Creative Works of Art – Every piece of art is priceless in the eyes of someone who can relate to it.  The creative inspiration behind these works of art is no different.
  • When Your Pet Snuggles Up Next to You – It’s just soooo cute.
  • A Moment of Eye Contact with an Attractive Stranger – You’ve never seen them before, and you may never see them again.  But a moment was shared.
  • A Long Hug from a Loved One – Those deep, warm hugs you wish you could nestle in forever.
  • Happily Singing at The Top of Your Lungs – Well… You know you make me wanna shout! Kick my heels up and shout! Throw my hands up and shout! Throw my head back and shout! Come on now… Shout!
  • Seeing Your Breath on a Chilly Night – A simple phenomenon that has entertained children since the beginning of mankind.
  • The Feeling of Acceptance – You’re now a part of something greater… and it feels good.
  • Watching the Clouds Form Cool Shapes – Never the same show twice.
  • Cuddling a Newborn Baby – Precious… simply precious.
  • When You Know You Can Trust Someone – You can see it in their eyes and you can feel it in your heart.  They have no ulterior motive.
  • Sitting Around a Bonfire with Your Friends – One of the greatest settings for reminiscing and storytelling with those your care about.
  • Seeing Two Elderly Folks Who are Madly in Love – It’s a sight of love that has surpassed the tests of time.
  • The Beauty of a Moonlit Sky – Few simple pleasures are more satisfying than gazing up into a starry, moonlit sky.
  • The Awesomeness of Skipping Rocks Across Water – It doesn’t matter how old you get, this one never gets old.
  • Watching Lightning in the Distance – Peaceful and powerful at the same time.
  • Slow Dancing in Your Living Room – Dancing is like dreaming with your feet. -Constanze
  • Knowing She’ll Be There When You Get Back – Yes.  There is stability in your life.  And she’s a big part of it.
  • Watching Her Sleep – Just being with her and breathing with her.
  • The Colors of Fall – It’s Mother Nature’s artwork.
  • People Who Make You Smile Just by Thinking of Them – Wherever I am, no matter what I’m doing, just thinking of her makes me smile.
  • The Warm Touch of Your Beloved – It’s the touch no one else has.
  • When You Realize People Are Reading What You Write – Words can’t explain it.  Thank you.
  • The Excitement of a New Comment on Your Blog – I love these.  ;-)

Can you think of anything else money can’t buy?  Leave a comment and let me know about it.

Simple Ways to Simplify Your Life

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There can be no step-by-step guide to simplifying your life, but I’ve compiled an incomplete list of ideas that should help you move in the right direction.  And of course, not every tip will fit your lifestyle, so just choose a few that do and apply them accordingly.

  1. Resign from a commitment you’re not passionate about.
  2. Stop trying to be perfect.
  3. Implement a basic cleaning schedule.
  4. Automate your finances by signing up for automatic bill pay and automatic savings deposits through your bank.
  5. Clean out your media collection and keep only the items you love.
  6. Clean out your purse or wallet.
  7. Put a paper shredder next to your mail spot.
  8. Winnow your wardrobe down to pieces that work together.
  9. Delete any social networking accounts you don’t actually use.
  10. Add your number to the do-not-call list.
  11. Create a car maintenance schedule and post it somewhere you’ll see it.
  12. Enjoy life’s simple pleasures.
  13. Start your day with a healthy meal.
  14. Turn your phone off when you need quiet time.
  15. Single-task as much as possible.
  16. Design a filing system that you can stick to. 
  17. Set one good goal, and go achieve it.
  18. Record your good “shower” ideas and then implement them. (Don’t we all get our best inspirations in the shower?)
  19. Write to a friend with (gasp!) pen and paper.
  20. Set limits on your bad habits, and reward yourself when you stick with them.
  21. Always be honest with yourself and others.
  22. Don’t worry too much about what other people think about you.
  23. Stop trying to be a saint and indulge yourself in something fun every once in a while.
  24. Pay off your debt.
  25. Avoid watching commercials and reading advertisements.
  26. Rediscover the pleasure of reading purely for enjoyment.
  27. Plan two weeks of delicious meals ahead of time and skip the nightly grocery run.
  28. Go to your doctor for a preventative checkup.
  29. Learn to ask for help.
  30. Make mistakes, learn from them, laugh about them, and move along.

12 secrets of being happy

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ACCEPT WHAT YOU HAVE

Research shows that happy people have modest levels of expectation and aspirations — they want what they can get — while unhappy people never seem to get what they want. They also know how to avoid disappointments and how to generate pleasant surprises. This is because they strive for realistic goals and are happy with their lot. ‘To be happy, we need to enjoy what we have.’

ENJOY WHAT YOU DO

Happy people do what they enjoy and enjoy what they do — and don’t do it for the money  or glory. There’s no point being stuck in a job you hate, surrounded by unfriendly colleagues just because the money is good — people forget that they are allowed to be happy at work, too. Many spend the best years of their lives trying to make money, sacrificing their health and family in the process,Later, they spend the same money they made working trying to recover their lost health and estranged family.

LIVE FOR TODAY

Don’t dwell on the past, on things that went wrong or previous failures. Similarly, don’t dream about an idealised future that doesn’t exist or worry about what hasn’t happened yet. Happy people live for the now; they have positive mind sets. If you can’t be happy today, what makes you think tomorrow will be different?

CHOOSE HAPPINESS

Don’t be afraid to step back and re-evaluate your goals. Imagine your life as a story that you can edit and revise as you  go along. This kind of flexible approach requires positive thinking and an open mind — you need to actively choose to be happy.

  RELATIONSHIPS

We get our happiness from other people, and from supporting other people. Remember that just as other people can make us happy, we are all ‘other people’ to someone else. And cherish people who are important to you. Research also shows that married people are happier than single people.

STAY BUSY

If you want to be happier, develop an outgoing, social personality — accept that drinks invitation, join a club, book group or choir. The best way to savour pleasure is in the company of others. Build a rich social life,not as an obligation, but because it is rewarding, meaningful and fun.

Active, busy, social people are the healthiest and happiest, in society. Get involved: make your motto ‘use it or lose it.’

DON’T COMPARE

Ambition is healthy and makes people happy, but envy makes them unhappy. Yet comparisons with others can spoil the benefits of ambition and are only useful if you learn something from them. Focus on your goals and dreams  so you can enjoy  your ambition and achievements.

BE YOURSELF

Just as you shouldn’t compare yourself with others, it’s important not to worry about what others think about you — then you can truly be yourself.
Happy people are spontaneous, natural and real; they  say what they think and  feel, and aren’t concerned what others think of them. Being oneself makes one feel free  and authentic.

STOP WORRYING

Don’t take yourself too seriously. Happy people don’t worry  and they recognise that 90 per cent of worries never come true.

GET ORGANISED

Happy people plan and organise, they have goals and a purpose. You can only get what you want or desire if you know what it is you want or desire in the first place. So while those chilled-out friends might seem happy, they’re actually just drifting along.

THINK POSITIVE

Bottling up emotions and bad feelings creates psychological distress and physical discomfort. Happy people get things off their chest, their motto is: get rid of it, or it will get rid of you. Similarly, work at developing optimistic thinking; happy people always look on the  bright side.

Successful athletes know to focus on winning, not losing,  YOU need to switch from a negative, glass-half-empty outlook to a glass-half-full and put optimism into practice to be happiest. Optimism is the mind’s natural self-defence mechanism against depression.

VALUE HAPPINESS

Happiness can be learned, but finding meaning and a purpose in life is what leads to it, not the other way around. The happiest people appreciate and realise that being happy adds years to their life, and life to their years.

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