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Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Formula for a Fresh Start

Part I

Forgiveness. You can say something like: "I forgive myself for the mistakes I've made."

Part II

Kindness. Know that you are lovable, even if you don't feel like it. Treat yourself the way you would treat a small child or friend. Don't beat yourself up for making a mistake. Mistakes are how we learn and grow.

Part III

Learn from your mistakes. No one is perfect, so don't be down on yourself for being human. When you goof up, make sure you take the lesson with you. (See how in the photo the "old stuff" nourishes and even protects the growth of the new?)

Part IV

Ask for help if you need help.

Part V

Keep growing and looking for the positive.

Ask yourself these questions:

What am I grateful for? If it's hard to come up with something, start with the basics, breathing, breakfast, friendship, swimming, ice cream... you get the idea.

Ask yourself each evening:
What was the best part of my day?
What do I look forward to tomorrow?

*Give yourself a hug,
give someone else a hug,
take a deep breath,
do a kindness for someone else
(get out of your self).*

You can do this! :-)

Aunt Laya

Thanks to xpistwv and for the wonderful photo.

Ouch! The Sting of Mean Words

Recently someone wrote something pretty mean about me on the internet. It wasn't personal, the guy doesn't even know me. It did sting at first when I read it. And then it took a while for the sting to disappear, but before long the sting did disappear. In it's place I found myself stronger and more confident!

When I was a student of martial arts, I spent some time working out one on one with a someone who was a black belt. He taught me that when you're sparring, don't even get mad if someone gets in a good hit. Anger gets you out of balance and you'll never fight well if you get emotionally out of balance with anger. I learned that if someone "gets you" it is an opportunity to see where you are "open." In a way, they are doing you a favor by showing you where you need to improve! He taught me to think of it as a game of tag. If you are tagged, that's where you can improve your moves or your game--or your life perspective!

Emotionally, I use this lesson the same way. When I felt the sting of hurtful words, I got to see where I had an opportunity to grow. Now I think about those same words and don't feel sad or bad at all. I see how the guy who wrote them revealed a puny part of himself and nothing more. How sad for him.

Some friends were talking to me yesterday about the Pixar animated movie "Ratatouille." They gave me a whole talk about how it's not really a kids' movie, but a deep film! (I'll need to watch it again from that perspective!) The point they made, a point well taken, was that even the the best review by a critic is still worth less than the actual act of being creative! Creative or Critical? How easy it is to be critical, what an investment to be creative.

So next time someone criticizes you, check your perspective. If it is someone you respect, you may have something to learn. If it is from someone who is simply blowing hot air, you can let it go. Know that you can rise above. And when you do rise, you'll be stronger and even more confident.

Keep shining!
Aunt Laya