How do you keep your mind positive to deal with life’s realities?

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Life continues in a routine then something happens…the other shoe you anticipate in the back of your mind. You never know what and you strive not to be a pessimist.  Whom wants to be in expectation of gloom?.

Can we be in expectation of good?  How can we be recipients of good?

Imagine if you did not plant your garden because you believe a hurricane might come this year and wipe out your hard work. Denying ourselves the joy of gardening is a crime isn’t it.  I believe Jehovah told Adam to tend the garden.

Not only would you miss out on the joy of planning your garden, the joy of working it, and the joy of the harvest Through out the season.  Pessimism is the weed like effect in your garden of life.

We must root out the pessimism in our life.  There may be reasons we base our pessimism as if it were fact.

Disappointments, hardships, and life’s realities could cause us to feel we are protecting our heart and mind by not having false hopes.

When we have belief systems in place because of prior experience or propoganda. This is an infringement that does not leave us open.  For instance:  I was born blond and have always been blond.  However, I noticed those with deeper darker hair colors had others respect or confidence almost immediately.  I dyed my hair a deep brown.  Not only did I feel more confident, I noticed I was treated differently by the same people.  Suddenly, competent!  I am at my own hair color and happy about it.  Yet, I learned a lot about people’s preconcieved notions.

Another attitude is about overweight people. Having experienced the stress of my own obesity after prolonged medical problems and medications, I understand all overweight people are not that way because of excessive food or lack of exercise.  Some people are heavy because of medical problems and medications.  Some people are heavy because of overeating and a lack of exercize.  Do we really lose all our good qualities just because of a few extra pounds?.

If we believe “I will never be loved.”  We are telling ourselves a lie.  Maybe those whom were responsible to love an protect us have emotional damage themselves and they were not capable of love and approval.  We could not be more loveable if the person does not know how to love.  I felt unwanted and not loved as a child.  It does not mean I was not loved.  I have enjoyed loving and being loved.  Jehovah has taught me how.

“I am unorganized” is another belief.  Maybe you are unorganized!  I am also unorganized.  Good News!  We can be more organized by practicing principles of time management and of personal habits.  I am working this month to have an industrious morning routine.  The fact is, I am cluttered, unorganized, and still completely optimistic of all I ever intend to do.

We watched the movie “Pollyanna”, Haley Mills, what a love, you feel she must be a fun lovable person in real life.  I liked when she an orphan of a minister, was talking to the preacher, played by Karl Mauldin. She quoted from Abraham Lincoln, “if you always look for the bad in others, you will find it!”

I thought about this bad habit, if our habit is to look at ourself or a family member always seeing the bad, we will never see the good.

People are so bias, people like whom they like and will always recognize the good in them.  And when a person does not like you, they will always see everything you say and do in a negative light.  People are blind.

According to Jehovah all of us rank the same,  we are all equally flawed with sin.  If we want Jehovah to see the good in us, we need to see it in others.  If our dislike for another blinds us, we need to ask Jehovah to open our eyes and help us to recognize what he sees in them, so we can be free to love them too.  This includes, seeing ourselves more clearly.  If we view only the good we are blind, if we view only the bad we are blind and crippled.

It is frustrating, sometimes, we want to change all at once, it is quite a hopeless helpless state.  I have to beg Jehovah to help me see more accurately at times.

The end of this article is here, in conclusion, each day we are privileged to live, realistic expectations of ourselves and others makes for a joyful existence.  It is time to plant the seeds entrusted to us as we hope for a most beautiful bounty.

This article is Dedicated to all my Dear friends whom continue to encourage me.  And all whom read the articles, may your life be blessed with Joy and Optimism.

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Monday, Why I love Mondays.

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MONDAY, MY FAVORITE DAY!!!

Monday is a day many dread.  It seems to some all falls onto their head on a Monday.  Being overwhelmed, the day can be unproductive, stressful, depressing, and it does not have to be this way.

About ten years ago I met a refreshing person whose name is Annemarie.  A perky blond whom looked like Meg Ryan.  I invited her to do something with me for the upcoming Monday and she said no, any day but Monday.  I asked her why not Monday.  She told me that was her day for herself.  She used Monday to get rest, to clean, do the laundry, to do gardening and lay in the sun.  I was so impressed that I have reserved Monday ever since.

A DAY OFF: If you have a choice in the matter.  If you can afford to work four days instead of five, why not take Monday off from your employment.  Many take Friday off by choice viewing it as a vacation day.  Yet, Monday may be an even better day to take off instead of Friday because it may be more fulfilling.  Everyone else in household is back to work and school.  Do not view your day as a day to Care Less or be carefree.  By carefully considering how you will spend your time on this special day, your life can take a change for the better.

Monday at home could mean an extra hour of needed sleep, getting in a relaxing walk, a trip to the library or museum by yourself, meeting a friend for lunch, doing your bills, or yard work.  For balance in my life, getting chores done in the form of a quick clean makes a difference for the whole week.  I do not mean a slave day, more like a day of time blocks adhered to.  Having attention deficit, time blocks help me to focus without the temptation to multitask.  If I multitask then my mind is unaccountable and takes flight.  The day is gone.  This can still happen to me when I feel weak due to health problems. Yet, I strive to do as much as I can on Monday because for me it is a sanity keeper.

A time block for extra rest like sleeping in an extra hour, and an hour break in the middle of the day.  A block for phone calls, A block for laundry which during that time while washing and drying are going on I can clean the bathrooms and or phone calls.  A Block for quick clean which is 12 minutes per room.  (my quick clean is ten minutes to do a quick pick up, gather what does not belong in the room including trash and set at doorway, wipe surfaces quickly, then timer goes off and I quickly sweep or vacuum. Then on to next room and set timer for ten minutes).  (The Slob Sisters have a great book about this and The Fly Lady, for years I read and reread. They helped me so much.  It seems so hard for me to read anymore books yet I will never forget that their programs are fantastic).  Then I run and put doorway items away as fast as possible.  Time for a break when all done.  A block for yard work or errands.  The blocks can be minutes long or a couple of hours long.  Use the timer.  If the timer goes off before your done then one must determine if another day of a few minutes will make a difference or if a few minutes now will make a big difference.  This is not the day to get caught up in trying to get each room done as a perfectionist would.  Each week of this activity will make a few weeks worth of efforts a visible accomplishment.

I like Monday because if I get my Monday work done, the whole week is much smoother.

What I like to do on Mondays.  First, I sleep in as long as I need to, with chronic health problems a lack of sleep contributes to my flare-ups.  Secondly, I start the laundry  and make my phone calls.  I do a deeper clean up in the kitchen.  Monday happens to be my deeper clean kitchen day.  While wash is going I clean my bathrooms.   A quick pick-up and sweep-up through the house remedies the mess the weekends create. I wash towels every Monday, and if possible I may get a jump ahead by doing them on Sunday night.

Setting up my schedule for the week on Sunday night helps me to know what phone calls are vital for me to make.  Doing my phone calls by 11:00a.m. really takes the pressure off the rest of the day.  Over the week, I pay attention to whose anniversary, graduation, or achievement has come about that I can on Sunday nights or Monday write out these cards and send them.  My husband seems to enjoy running errands, and I like being home on Monday.  Emotionally, I really like being home on Monday because life seems so busy on the weekends, the downtime to get things done is precious.  I rarely accept an invitation to leave my house on a Monday.  Hanging my clothes out to dry is another thing I have done for decades and I like to do if the weather permits.  Cooking a good meal and doing a little meal prep to make the next couple dinners for the week easier is important.  Eating a little lighter during the day helps me to maintain my focus and lessen the burden on my internals.  A walk or isometric exercises refreshes me.

At 1:30 pm. on Monday is a PBS station sewing show called Sew it All.   I like to stop and enjoy this show and put my legs up.  It is only a half hour and because I enjoy sewing it is a treat to watch.  On Wednesday, Sew Easy comes on, I will tape it to watch later.  If sewing or painting or something else is your interest, give yourself  a 90 minutes time block to work on a project, and then that evening your free to get back to it if you can.

Filling my Monday with practical efficient activities sets up my week  for greater productivity and less stress.  Whether it is every Monday or only a once a month Monday, having this day to catch up on domestics, relaxing activities, yard work, gardening, and phone calls makes for a better start to the week.  It also is important to avoid time wasters on this day.  Unless the errands are vital for the week to go smooth try to keep most of the day to yourself at home.  Beware of Time Wasters such as gabbing on the phone, texting, internet cruising, or television watching.  This day is a day for yourself to reset and restore.  With an extra hour of rest, getting a home in order, car cleaned, laundry done, gardening, essential phone calls and bill paying your investing in a more peaceful life.  The week and month will go smoother.  The evening of Monday is a good time to be refreshed by going to bed early for an extra hour of rest before resuming regular activities on Tuesday.  Monday’s never get me … .

 

 

 

The Harvest in our Life.

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Alabama Cotton Harvest  photographer, Gina Rydin

The Harvest in our Life.  A farmer knows when to plant his fields.  His routine and schedule must be diligently adhered to if he is to recieve the bounty that is anticipated.  A farmer cannot be happenstance regarding his goal.  The planning, is exacting.  A farmer whom procastinates is a poor destitute farmer.  A farmer whom waits for the perfect day, or perfect conditions is a farmer whom will not reap as others in his community.

How is the Harvest in our life?  Can we reflect a farmer’s attitude with our habits, routines, short and long term goals?

 

The Last Quarter. We can make meaningful changes in our life.

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Chili with Cheddar Chive Scones          by Gina at fatfitanfab.com

October, is the start of our last quarter as we are near the end of another year. Sometimes we can feel time is running out, what can we do with the time left?

People can get so wrapped up in exterior activities whether extracurricular activities for their kids, holidays, politics, that just living life has lost it’s meaning.  Being overly committed and obligated can cause us to be well-spent emotionally, financially, and with our time.

Routines are a practice that may not always be honestly rewarding.  If it is our practice to watch television for three or four hours before bed so as to relax it is a choice.  Is there a more rewarding choice?  My husband bought a lathe for woodworking at a yard sale.  Brock, 23, after work has been coming home from work making beautiful cups and bowls.  He is enjoying it and it is rewarding.  Is there an activity whether creative or purposeful that would be beneficial to do a night or two each week?

I am naturally a clutter bug, yet, my floors are clean.  Piles, piles still occupy the perimeter of many spaces in our home.  How they get there, where they come from, I can never see it happening, yet, I am the culprit.  As I am practicing better habits, not adding to the problem, it still happens.  I have been working on an area outside my painting area or artist corner.  It seems my creative forces has emerged from the room and congested beyond the room.  Is there an excuse?  I have an empty cabinet in there, and drawers half full, and the books put up on top of the cabinet.  These are all holdups and blocks to my creativity.

In the evening I have been putting on good music and working in there a few minutes, turning it into a real artists retreat.  Privately, I am a bit turned off by the junky furniture.  It is all like new, it is just pressed board stuff you could get cheap.  I love good wood.  If it was made the same of walnut, or cherry, as you can see, I am a brat.

I feel so much appreciation for this area I have, when there have been times in my life where I did not have an artists den.  So, I want to occupy the space since my secret is out about the furniture which looks new.  I am ashamed of myself for such notions.  That represents life too, maybe we have notions that hold us up.

“If only I were thin I would” do this or wear that;  If only I had an exercize machine or a membership;  if only someone loved me I would do this; if only my home was like this I would invite people over; if only my mate would  buy me flowers or be more romantic.  “If Only”!!!.  We can be set back with thinking like this.

An exaggerated answer to the “If Onlies.”  My son says this is an oxymoron.  There is no plural to the concept of only.  He could be correct, but for purposes he may be slow to understand, he still says we have a ton of “if only” in our life.  It is plural no matter how you put it.  John says, “If only the dog didn’t stop to crap in the road I would not be late to work.”  As we debate on proper or improper use.  I would still like to make a long awaited for point.

If only I were thin I would wear more chic outfits.  When I was in my low 130’s I fretted because I was not in my low 120’s,  then prednisone gave me an extra 45lbs that compounded the problem, ashamed I wore thrift store duds.  I wouldn’t buy the close I really liked because I did not deserve it til I lost some weight.  Now, at 205 lbs and on antiobotics and other meds my weight is still going up despite my efforts.  I am buying and have been buying new garments that are tasteful and comfortable.  I feel better no longer stressing over this “If Only” business causes years to go by wasted.

If only, is a matter of procrastination.  It makes our excuse sound valid.  Invite friends to your home even though it is not perfect.  It they are your friend they will pitch in an help with no judgement or just have a good time.

Do not wait for a bouquet of flowers and romance.  Buy the flowers yourself, and buy a new tie or dress socks for your man, and give a card expressing appreciation for all his hardwork and love.  Gifts are gifts, not a matter of exchange.  Do not wait for romance, create it.  If they miss the point of our ovature at least they know we love them.  They likely need us to romance them more than we need them to.  Just remember, when our mate works long days, their minds may not be thinking about romance, their romance is their sacrifice going out working to put the roof over our head and food on the table.  It is a valid gift that is not appreciated often enough. It can be more stressful or even degrading then we realize for them at work.  Let them come home to a big smile, a warm hug, with respect and appreciation.  We may be the only thing that puts joy an motivation in our mates life.  Women whom work like this benefit the same as men do by the unexpected gifts, or words of appreciation.

So, instead of over extending ourselves needlessly, let us look at our life.. can we see what routines or habits can be modified so as to bring greater joy and accomplishment in our life.  By switching things up a couple nights a week.  Whether by inviting others over, doing extra cleaning, getting ahead on our taxes, going for early evening walk, doing a craft or hobby we enjoy.  We can examine our life by finding ways to destress, and declutter.

We have someone come in an clean once a week doing things that are hard for me.  It is a necessity. And it helps me to get more done.

How about a trip to the zoo before it gets too cold, or the museums, or the library.  Let us make use of this month to get a few things back on track.  We will have pride an joy instead of depression.

This is a very stressful quarter for many. Slow down, save your money, enjoy the great outdoors. End the year doing the things you promised yourself you would be doing when the year started.

When things are not going right …

When things are not going right, and your perplexed what can you do?  Resolving problems is not so easy when emotions are involved, and relationships are at stake.  How do you keep your feelings in check, while your overwhelmed and discouraged?  Finding the answer to problems is not always obvious.

Praying to our Great Creator is always a perfect start to addressing problems.  How we pray is another matter entirely, we can always be sure to Thank our creator for the good we have experienced in our life, then we can let him know we have limited understanding of our problem and thus have a challenge figuring out the best course to follow.  We can ask for wisdom and direction.

Next we should write down our problem and approach it like a business person.  Write out what options we have, at least three.  Then the possible outcomes for each option.  The pros and cons of each, and what happens if we do not make a decision.  We must not be overly pessimistic about the matter, assuming the worst outcome if we make a big decision.  It may work out better than we have guesstimated.  Of course, it could work out worst, and we must be prepared for it.

Being informed about the subject we are approaching is vital.  Yet, discussing it with an intimate friend is not always the best choice.  Their emotions might get the better of them, and you.

Always consider your own moral values when thinking about resolving a matter.  It is best not to second guess your principles or it could nag you forever, and bring the greatest grief.  I remember when I was at a special group meeting for children of alcoholics that a young woman there was in great distress.  She was involved with a married man, he told her the usual tales of his marital woes, and he had her hook, line, and sinker.  She did not know he was married, until after much interaction.  Guilt, she was a slave to, and she wanted to drink, and she wanted to die.  I just let her know how beautiful she was, and that she did not want to hurt another family, and that she is not the first he has fooled around with.  We talked about her freeing herself from this fleabag with no legitimate intentions.  This woman was breaking all her moral values and she was miserable for it.  Love should be a beautiful thing, and if you live with self respect and respect for the creator, you will be the happier for it.

The advise from another is easy to get, yet, they do not have to live your consequences.  Going to an older, mature, person whom has shown by their own life that they live with some principle can be very helpful when soliciting of advice.  Of course the decision is still always yours.  I like to go to   http://www.jw.org and type my problem in the search bar because the way they address issues is well rounded.  It is free, and over 115 years experience, it is great.

This week I have been overwhelmed, sad, and discouraged.  Sometimes I feel a little grouchy, sometimes I want to cry.  The thing that helps me greatest is sticking to my usual routine, and working on a few things I have been putting off.  I have been looking at these shelves in a corner for a few years that I have wanted to paint and put above some special doorways we have.  So, while feeling so blue about my father in hospice, (he is many states away and I cannot get there because of my hernia surgery and recovery), I am very sad.  This Thursday I get my stitches out and then I can get on the plane on Friday.  I hope he lasts til I get there.  I long to sit with him a bit.  I thought of my father as I painted these shelves.  Tomorrow my son will put them up over the doorway and I will be delighted to see it, and it is another thing done.  Although I cannot do regular things, I am doing little things to improve the overall look of our environment.

While going through things, it is vital to still do our laundry, and keep picking up and putting away.  Yet, we must make time to get our cars extra tidy, and do something special with our hair.  Watch a good movie you saw years ago you enjoyed.  Talk about good things with a friend on the phone.  Make something with some skills you have.  Go for a walk with a friend.  It is not always necessary to talk about a problem to resolve it.  Sometimes, we need to get our mind off our problems so we can come back to it with a whole new approach.

If you feel you never get a good outcome when dealing with problems, then maybe you do need to try a fresh approach to an old problem.  Do not respond the same old way, think of an assertive friend and how they might respond, try it.

For example, if you have a mate that likes to holler at you for long periods, think about their heart and health.  Think about your heart and health.  Think about the neighbors.  If you have children in the home, think of them.  New approach, no wining, complaining, threats or ultimatums.  Just say as if you are a good friend to them, the said mate, “I see how frustrated you get when you are expressing yourself, I am concerned about your health, and mine too.  I am also very interested in your feelings.  Your feelings are important to me, but I no longer can be audience to your anger.  It scares me about your health and mine too.  Let us strive to state the concern in thirty seconds or less and then let us see how quickly we can fix the problem.”  Then walk away, start sweeping the floor or something.  If you stand there looking, expecting him or her to agree, it looks like you want a fight.  So just move onto something else, ask them if you can get them a cup of water or something.  Gracious and kind is key to pleasant outcomes.

My first husband was a very violent person.  This really worked for a bit.  Eventually, I realized he had a personal problem and it was not me.  I did not deserve his anger and there was no way I could fix his problem, he was a bottomless pit.  My life has been greatly blessed without him, and I hope he is living respectfully and happily.

We live in a very problematic world.  It is impossible to live in complete peace and security at this point.  We are only in control of ourselves and how we react to a situation.  We can react differently than we usually do, and then we can possibly have a different outcome.  Respect for others, and respect for ourselves means we would never hurt another and we do not open ourselves up to be repeatedly hurt.

I only have a few days left before I leave, and I would like to come home to a more pleasant atmosphere than when I left.  Therefore, besides continuing with my regular routine, I am going to get a few more things done before I leave.  Some problems will have to just work themselves out.  It is great I can meditate on some good memories of my father and me.

Those annoying little things, just nag at me….

Those annoying little things, just nag at me.  Don’t you have things that nag at you?  What a relief it is to get a few of them handled.

Is it a phone call you need to make, or a letter you need to write?  Is it paperwork requesting more information from you?  Or is it spending time with family members you keep putting off?  The piece of trim that needs to be put up, or a leaky faucet.  It may be that your drawers are so stuffed that it is difficult for you to put your clothes away, yet, you seem to be wearing the same old things.

It not only causes us stress when we have visual reminders everywhere of all we need to get done.  It can cost us a great deal of money in some situations if we wait to long to follow thru on things.

A few years ago, our friends James and Olivia invited us to go to a beach house a customer had given them a weeks use for.  I brought along my favorite things, painting to do, knitting etc. and my favorite magazines.  I love to do paintings on trips.  That trip, I just do not remember what painting I did do, but my mind clearly remembers how wonderfully relaxing to be in an environment that was tastefully decorated, nothing needing to be fixed, and nothing needing done.  We were totally replenished.  The effects of that trip lasted a long time for me.

Our home is a real joy to be in, very interesting, eclectic.  Yet, the trim needs to be put up, the stairs need to be stained, and woodwork needs to be finished.  There really is not one room that is totally finished that could be considered a refuge.  I have a goal to make one room like that, and eventually the whole house.  Sometimes, it is not so joyful walking thru because my conscious nags at me, I need to do this, I do not like how that was done and I need to tear it out and get it done right, and I sure wish that painting was done.  It turns out that others feel that way in their homes, I need to clean out my garage so we can use it again, I would like to get the spare room cleaned out, etc.  Sometimes, it is just a matter of taking a drawer, emptying it on the bed, and discovering some favorite items in there that you can enjoy using again and donating the less important things.

When it comes to paperwork and phone calls that get put to the back of the mind.  That creates such mental clutter, no wonder people get so stressed.  It is important to take a bit of time on a Friday morning or a Monday morning and address these things.  It frees up the mind and may save you some money in the long run.

I have been put off with our insurance this last year because they did not properly reimburse me for something.  So, I thought I had handled it alright, and felt it was a lost cause.  Now, that I had to go again to this appointment I called the insurance and said I want to be sure what I am covered for to make sure I will get reimbursed this time.  I mentioned I was a little soured about them not reimbursing me last year.  They surprised me by saying, they needed one thing and they would go ahead and still reimburse me for that.  What a surprise and blessing.

Sometimes, we get a little grouchy because we are so hard pressed.  Making time to get these little annoying things out of the way can surely lighten our load.  Then we can be free to enjoy those we love and smile with them.  When did you last stop, look at your loved one, and smile?  Smiles, are a great way to say Hello, I accept you, I need you, your important to me…Oh, we will touch on that another time.