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Posts from the ‘Relationships’ Category

Stand Out

“No individual has any right to come into the world and go out of it without leaving behind him distinct and legitimate reasons for having passed through it.” – George Washington Carver

“Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” – Romans 12:2

“Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” – Romans 12:2

Do not merely blend in, go along to get along, fit into the pack. Conformity dulls and mutes beautiful color. Define yourself and live it without hesitation, leaving more behind because you passed by. We are here to be salt and light, to stand out. Be bold and transform yourself and in turn the world.

Attain

“Life is not easy for any of us. But what of that? We must have perseverance and above all confidence in ourselves. We must believe that we are gifted for something and that this thing must be attained.” – Marie Curie

“The future enters into us, in order to transform itself in us, long before it happens.” - Rainer Maria Rilke

“The future enters into us, in order to transform itself in us, long before it happens.” – Rainer Maria Rilke

The graduation season is in full swing. My niece Emily graduated from high school last week. High school, like teenagers, is filled with a mix of emotions, ups, downs, some drama and a lot of diffused energy. An important transition into young adulthood to be sure. While it’s time for more focus and to come into your own in college, don’t lose your wide-eyed enthusiasm and back it up with hard work and confidence.

In particular for young women, it’s so important to believe in yourself, regardless of the noise around you, and there’s a lot of it. Trust and listen to your instinct (God’s voice). You have so much to offer and gifts to develop to give to the world. And in all that you do, do it with passion, compassion and heart. And when you find your place and fully engage, you’ll soon discover that it’s not so much what you do in life but how you do it, with character and kindness.

Wisdom

“Wisdom begins in wonder.” – Socrates

“Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire.” - William Butler Yeats

“Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire.” – William Butler Yeats

This weekend, we celebrated my nephew Mark’s graduation from college. Next weekend, we celebrate my niece Emily’s graduation from high school, proud moments, wonderful life transitions and milestones. Twenty seven years ago, I graduated from college and am reminded vividly that time passes by both slowly and quickly all at once. If I could go back and give my 27 year younger self some advice as well as Mark and Emily, here are a few thoughts that come to my mind and heart:

  • Be aware and awake to the gifts in each day. Pay attention.
  • Each step, each day makes up your story and it will be revealed at the right time. It all ties together.
  • Love completely, regardless of the perceived risk.
  • Work hard. And while your career is an important part of your life, it’s not who you are.
  • Mind, body, heart, spirit – grow them all.
  • Always do your best regardless of what others say or think. Never dumb it down or dial back.
  • Our plans don’t always work out the way we planned, but they always work out.
  • Stop and help others along the way. Lasting joy comes from giving more than receiving.
  • Laugh a lot and don’t take yourself so seriously.
  • Your family is your anchor and home, always cheering for you, crying with you and quietly praying you through.
  • No matter what happens, you are never alone. God is with you every step of the way. Sometimes ahead, lighting the way. Sometimes at your side, holding your hand. Sometimes behind, lifting you up.
  • Cast your light. The world is waiting.

While this part of your education is over, school has just begun. Be curious, ask questions and you will learn every day. And to my 27 year older self, that youthful optimism and enthusiasm remains within, a bit bruised from the journey, but stronger for it.

Agreement

“Happiness, contentment, the health and growth of the soul, depend, as men have proved over and over again, upon some simple issue, some single turning of the soul.” – George A. Smith

When we quiet the noise, we realize that much of our conflict is created by us – thoughts, assumptions, gossip, keeping score, coasting. Driven by us then conveniently projected on others. Our pursuit of getting others in agreement with us is futile. The starting and ending point is getting in agreement with ourselves. The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz beautifully summarizes key agreements for us to own. Pretty simple and profound. We can get in agreement and it really is our choice.

“Be Impeccable with Your Word
Speak with integrity.  Say only what you mean.  Avoid using the word to speak against yourself or to gossip about others.  Use the power of your word in the direction of truth and love.

Don’t Take Anything Personally
Nothing others do is because of you.  What others say and do is a projection of their own dream.  When you are immune to the opinions and actions of others, you won’t be the victim of needless suffering.

Don’t Make Assumptions
Find the courage to ask questions and to express what you really want.  Communicate with others as clearly as you can to avoid misunderstandings, sadness, and drama.  With just this one agreement, you can completely transform your life.

Always Do Your Best
Your best is going to change from moment to moment; it will be different when you are healthy as opposed to sick.  Under any circumstance, simply do your best, and you will avoid self-judgment, self-abuse, and regret.”

Beautiful Threads

“One of the most beautiful qualities of true friendship is to understand and to be understood.” – Lucius Annaeus Seneca

“In the sweetness of friendship let there be laughter, and sharing of pleasures. For in the dew of little things the heart finds its morning and is refreshed.” – Khalil Gibran

“In the sweetness of friendship let there be laughter, and sharing of pleasures. For in the dew of little things the heart finds its morning and is refreshed.” – Khalil Gibran (A little Barry sisters fun at family wedding.)

There are beautiful threads woven through the fabric of our life. Friends and family who are a part of our many memories and milestones, bonds that are enduring. Some we see everyday, others we see at weddings, graduations and funerals. And whether we talk to them every week or a few times a year, they remain a part of our foundation, our home. Family become friends, friends become family.

Through the celebrations, challenges, transitions and losses, they laugh, hug and cry us through our victories and defeats. Listening more than talking, holding our hand or giving us a high five. They provide the color and pattern in an often random world.

Think of all of those people in your life who are a part of your fabric and call one of your beautiful threads today.

Bright light

“The Great Creator lives within each of us. All of us contain a divine, expressive spark, a creative candle intended to light our path and that of our fellows. We are shiny, not tarnished; large, not small; beautiful, not damaged – although we may be ignorant of our grace, power, and dignity. – Julia Cameron, Walking in this World

We have the tendency to count the wrong things – shortcomings, faults, what we don’t have. Be and look for light and your world becomes brighter, shadows overcome. Actively encourage others to share their light in accord. We all rise when each of us is lifted, allowed to be brighter. Release and illuminate your grace, power, and dignity. Celebrate with deep gratitude all that is right now and what can be magnified with, through and by your light at full strength. Put your sunglasses on, bright lights ahead.

Forgetting the Unforgettable

“You are not here merely to make a living. You are here in order to enable the world to live more amply, with greater vision, with a finer spirit of hope and achievement. You are here to enrich the world, and you impoverish yourself if you forget the errand.” – Woodrow Wilson

“Let us be grateful to people who make us happy, they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.” - Marcel Proust

“Let us be grateful to people who make us happy, they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom.” – Marcel Proust

In the daily details of the unimportant, we forget the unforgettable moments – life changing events. Marriages, births, anniversaries, deaths – mournings, milestones, celebrations and victories.

Last week, Linda sent me an email to commemorate my 14 years cancer-free of melanoma (wear sunscreen, you look good in white). I forgot. This past week, running buddy and awesome friend Terry celebrates 12 years cancer-free. And today, my cousin, traveling companion, hero, babysitter (in the past and still today), and friend, Jeanne celebrates 10 years cancer-free of breast cancer.

Each of us have, are or will go through “life-changing” experiences that put what’s truly important in crystal clear view. The little things are exposed for how really little they are. Family, friends, faith, purpose, generosity, love and joy grow in proportion, to the size they are meant to be.

Remember those unforgettable moments that are meant to shift our life, our perspective, our path. Celebrate each day, for it is the only promise each of us has, so spend each well.

Jeanne, Terry and me – happy anniversary! Remember that life changing moment, share it with others and keep celebrating each day to fullest! Never forget the unforgettable. Remember, remember.

Friendship

“In the sweetness of friendship let there be laughter, and sharing of pleasures. For in the dew of little things the heart finds its morning and is refreshed.” – Khalil Gibran

Be kind and considerate to each person you meet. There is a reason for their presence on your path, either for a moment or a lifetime. Some will become true friends. Others a brief encounter, a smile. Call an old friend, make a new one, heal a broken friendship. The journey is a short one and we need not travel it alone. Be grateful for the friends you have and mindful of the friend you can be.

“A single rose can be my garden... a single friend, my world.” - Leo Buscaglia

“A single rose can be my garden… a single friend, my world.” – Leo Buscaglia

Your Window

“One of the most tragic things I know about human nature is that all of us tend to put off living. We are all dreaming of some magical rose garden over the horizon instead of enjoying the roses that are blooming outside our windows today.” – Dale Carnegie

Today is it. Look for the good in your garden of people, place and spirit. Lighten your spirit and lift the burdens from your heart. Tend to your garden so each day is filled joy, delight, and beauty.

There are beautiful roses, even in the midst of winter. Right outside your window.

“I still get wildly enthusiastic about little things... I play with leaves. I skip down the street and run against the wind.” - Leo Buscaglia

“I still get wildly enthusiastic about little things… I play with leaves. I skip down the street and run against the wind.” – Leo Buscaglia

Echo

“Kind words can be short and easy to speak, but their echoes are truly endless.” – Mother Teresa

The sun bursts through clouds with strength and brilliance. Amidst your many plans and aspirations for the day, above all, be kind. A word, a smile, an acknowledgement. A simple act that echoes well beyond, breaking through the clouds of the day. Cast light.

“May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view. May your mountains rise into and above the clouds.” - Edward Abbey

“May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view. May your mountains rise into and above the clouds.” – Edward Abbey

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