Making Other Plans

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again… ”Life sometimes happens when we are busy making other plans”.

The original quote came from John Lennon, apparently. (There has been some speculation, and according to the Yale book of quotations, the origin is attributed to writer and cartoonist Allen Saunders.)

Whoever said it, whoever came up with it? There’s truth to it!

We all know that sometimes ‘life’ just happens. And let’s face it, in an ideal world it would happen the way we wanted it to… but we all know that at present our world is less than ideal. I have many moments (some good and some bad) where I find myself stopping to catch my breath, and thinking, ”Wait! What just happened?”

These days, it’s just too easy to ‘get busy and run out of time’. So many occurrences that dim the light of our passions.
Suddenly we notice that yet another week has passed us by, and in reflecting on it we suddenly become aware of the little things : there wasn’t a moment where I experienced a good old belly chuckle; that great thing happened on Tuesday, but I was so worried about the meeting on Wednesday that I didn’t actually take time to appreciate it; my days were so full of ‘being busy’ that I didn’t stop to breathe, and just be ‘me’. And the list goes on and on.

It’s a never ending ‘cycle of life’ for many of us, right?

In a world where bravery and strength only seems to be acknowledged when you’re doing it ‘out loud’, perhaps we should try and pause for a moment, and reflect inwardly, and try and remember that the bravery and strength that lies within our hearts is far more important than the ones that get ‘shouted about’.

There is power in holding joy in your heart
There is power in practicing restraint.
There is power in giving to others – not only in not expecting to get it back, but also in not needing to advertise it.
There is power in being kind – especially to those who ‘don’t deserve it’.

And the bravery and strength within your heart – if your heart is true and you allow these things to consume it (take time to reflect on THEM and educate yourself/absorb your heart and mind in THESE things) – will give you that power…

To ‘do’ life… when it happens…

To learn to live with grace, for yourself, and especially for others!

And to experience a joy that not many people can actually understand!

Please be good to yourselves this week – and to your hearts! Because you are worth it! ❤

Horton heard what?

It’s that day again! 😉

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Photo credit : skiptomylou.org

Today is Dr Seuss Day

”Theodor Seuss Geisel, commonly known by his pen name Dr. Seuss, was a writer, poet and cartoonist. Though best known as a children’s author (he released a whopping forty-six books for tykes), his career also saw him work as an illustrator for advertising campaigns and a political cartoonist during the Second World War. He was also a true perfectionist, known to discard 95% of his material before settling on a theme for a new book, sometimes spending up to a year writing a single story, and preferring payment upon completion, rather than in advance.

March 2nd is a celebration of his life and works, as it was on this day in 1904 that he entered the world. Having lived eighty-seven years and made an incredible impact on numerous generations, he died in 1991 at his home in La Jolla, California. His many bizarre, colourful and zany tales are still cherished by young and old alike, and, having been translated into more than twenty languages, are read all across the world every single day.” Extract taken from the link provided above.

I owned four of his books as a child (all the others I read came from the library), and I still have them!  I read them to my children when they were younger, and they’ve now been packed away for my grandchildren one day (although I think I will be waiting a very long time for that 😛 Not that I’m complaining 😉 )

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Photo credit : northernnatalcourier.co.za

And as I am reminiscing, and looking through all the quote images, I see a lot of the things that I have a tendency to say in them – perhaps he had a greater influence on me than I thought 😉

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Photo credit : earlymoments.com

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So here’s my ‘Dr Seuss inspired’ wish for you :

May you find the strength and wisdom for the mountains that you climb.

May you remember that no one can be a better ‘you’ than you.

May your heart not only be open to caring for others, but may you also find opportunities to be kind.

May you be filled with courage to stand out in the crowd – stick to your values and goals and pursue your dreams… no matter who says what!

AND ….

“And the Grinch, with his Grinch-feet ice cold in the snow,
stood puzzling and puzzling, how could it be so? It came without ribbons. It came without tags. It came without packages, boxes or bags. And he puzzled and puzzled ’till his puzzler was sore. Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn’t before. What if Christmas, he thought, doesn’t come from a store. What if Christmas, perhaps, means a little bit more.”

May you experience the goodness and greatness of love EVERY DAY that can’t be bought.

Old Rock Day

So amongst many other days being celebrated today all over the world (like the precious little boy who lives across from me who turns a whole eight years old today!!!) today is also Old Rock Day!

I was excited because I love listening to some good old Rock ‘n Roll…. BUT….

Wrong Rock!

They meant all things fossilised and stony! So I am guessing Geologists and amateur rock enthusiasts will be cracking the champagne this evening in celebration 😉 (Unless they live in South Africa, where alcohol is still banned as part of ‘disaster management protocol for Covid 😛 )

So here are some great rock ‘life’ quotes for you – minus the guitar 😉 (I got them from Pinterest)

And I really loved this one…. it made me laugh…. so let’s keep on going into our 2021 year and….

😉

‘Twas the season…

Christmas has come and gone. I didn’t do a ‘traditional Merry Christmas to all’ blog post.
And it will seem surreal, but I genuinely did think of all my regular readers on Christmas Day… strange, but very true. It’s how I roll 😉

Christmas Day is over… I know some who have already packed away their trees and decorations. And I am reminded of this, which I thought I would share…

Perhaps we can NOT put away all the things that truly count? Unless you’re filling a box with air that has had kisses blown into it to represent love, and are giving it away 😉

I trust you all had a wonderful Christmas – even though times are hard and circumstances were limiting.

Please remember to keep loving and giving, spreading kindness as you go.

And also remember you are cherished, and you matter!

What if…

I saw this meme on Facebook, and it made me smile. It reminded me of a happy time as a little girl, sitting with my dad, and being allowed to watch Star Trek….

And ever since the pandemic hit, it appears that a world that had already seemed to have gone insanely crazy in a bad way has just added a whole new level to its craziness. That old saying springs to mind… ”Just when you thought things couldn’t get worse”….

It got me to thinking though….

What if we add another different level of craziness? One that could quite possibly boggle many an educated brain? What if, despite everything that is happening around us, we …..

What if we smile at strangers? Or buy a stranger a cup of coffee? Or share our food with the tramp on the corner? Or pick some flowers for the old lady down the road? Or compliment someone randomly?

I know I have said these things before… but it’s really on my heart to say it again.

I shared this on my Facebook yesterday and it is so very true…..

Let’s work on being the change we want to see in this world, one small random act of kindness at a time 😉

Stay safe, fellow bloggers! And please don’t forget to smile 😉

Photo credits : Facebook and arisesociety.com

Touching on Success

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As with many things in life, success has different meanings in different situations.
By it’s definition, it is the accomplishment of an aim or purpose.

And although I know that I know this, sometimes I still forget some of the aspects related to the word ‘success’.

I was reading Ed Mylett’s book, and he was talking about when he first started out – the early days of his entrepreneurship. When he wasn’t a successful entrepreneur.

He speaks of how they had nothing. Bills hadn’t been paid, utilities had been shut off. He and his wife had to sneak down to the apartment complex’s swimming pool before others woke up to use the showers there, and then he’d don his business suit and ‘pretend’ to be a successful entrepreneur. He mentions that the showers were open ones, and so he would hold a towel for his wife to try and ‘protect her privacy’.

What struck me, as I read those words, was this :

Yes, he wasn’t yet a successful entrepreneur, BUT in my eyes (based on the story he told) he was pretty successful as a husband.

I don’t read Success magazine, but I liked what I found in Wikipedia…

~~According to the company, the magazine “focuses on people who take full responsibility for their own development and income,” and provides personal and professional development.~~ 

Because here’s the thing : we are fully responsible for our own personal and professional development, and the success thereof. While circumstances may play a part in delaying our ‘success’, I think that a lot of the time the fact that we just continue to persevere is successful in itself!

A couple of weeks ago, I was approached by a friend who was being poached by another company – according to her she was really happy in her current placement, but the other company was offering her a much better salary package. She asked me what she should do. I told her to speak to her boss, and see if he could perhaps counteroffer. Naturally, she was worried that the other company would still be offering her more – and what then? My reply was ‘to determine what it was she was chasing – if she’s happy where she is, and that is what she wants from life, then she should stay. If her aim was to make more money, then she should change jobs’.
I don’t know that this was the best advice (since then, her current company came in with a better offer and she is staying where she is) but I do know this :

Success is largely about perspective, and it’s personal. What it means to me may not necessarily be what it means to you. 
I found this article about 9 famous people who spoke of what success is – to them. There were some interesting things in there, so I thought I’d share it in case you wanted to do some further reading 😉

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Photo credit : quotefancy.com

I love the quote above. It’s something I often refer to, and is a reminder for me to ‘think big’.

But I find that I have to regularly argue with myself. (An article for reference because I am not crazy 😛 )

And I know I am not alone when I say that I am ‘my own worst enemy’ and that the main thing ‘standing in my way is ME’!

I have to argue with myself because I have not yet conquered all those limiting beliefs, and one of the biggest ones that I struggle with is the one that tells me I will never be successful.

do think it is all about perspective though – and it’s personal. Because what I want to be successful at? I think I am slowly but surely achieving. I doubt it’s going to make me famous though 😛

My definition of success is just that – it’s mine. It’s looking at my aims and purposes (goals) and celebrating when I achieve them.

I like to dance… so I think I am going to go with an optimistic view on this :

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Photo credit : me.me

For now I will just keep doing my best, work on believing in myself, continue learning and growing so that I can be a better version of me, and keep checking my list of what I want to achieve.

And I will celebrate each small success (my perception of it) along the way!

Feel free to reward yourself now, since you have successfully completed reading this blog post 😉

 

Know yourself – the never ending journey

Just to recap :
You’re worthy of love – especially your own.

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Photo credit : ronaibrummet.com

It’s their opinion. Possibly based on their own limiting beliefs. Possibly based on something you did – but they don’t know your why. 

At the end of the day, try not to make it your own opinion of yourself. Please try and allow yourself some grace – we all make mistakes. It’s what we do after we have made them that counts. Be kind TO YOU!

You can still love you.

And :
Slow progress is still progress!

Please try to not feel discouraged if your pace is slower than those around you.

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And as Tony Robbins has been heard to say :

You’re still way ahead of everyone who isn’t trying!

And today I am going to throw a third thing in the mix :

Get to know YOU!

I went to buy dog food and was chatting with the lady who runs the shop. I asked after her daughter and she was catching me up with regards to her, when she said to me, 
“You know, I am still struggling with that whole irrational fears thing. I even went and bought a book that someone recommended and said would definitely help me. But it hasn’t made any difference.”
I asked her if she likes reading. Her response was that she doesn’t like it at all, never reads – not even magazines. Can’t seem to focus for long enough and gets irritated.
Then I asked her if she likes movies and series and well, pretty much, watching stuff?
The reply was a huge yes! So I suggested to her that she search on YouTube for that author (because I know she has a channel, and have actually watched some of her videos) and find videos that relate to the book and watch those instead.
I have no idea if my suggestion was of any help. But I think you understand why I shared her story.

Aristotle said that to know yourself is the beginning of all wisdom. 

For me personally, this means that I need to pay attention to me – develop my skills of understanding ME! And what works for me NOW!

And it means acknowledging something that is just as important as loving myself and accepting that I may take more time than others : what works for other people just might not work for me. 

We need to be careful with that statement though – and that’s why knowing ourselves is so important. I am not the same person I was last year, last month, even last week. I am growing and changing – and with this comes an adjustment in my thinking, so to speak. What I mean is that there’s been a shift in what works for me as well. 

I’ll leave you with one last story, which is a little silly, but I am hoping it will help make my point :

When my children were younger, and pushing every button they could find on their ‘mommy machine’, I used to count to about 30…. and then give up. Because it didn’t work for me. I got irritated easily, didn’t manage stress as well as I should have, and had such low self-worth that it marred most aspects of my life. ”Count to Ten” was an attainable ‘dream way’ of coping.

I’ve worked hard on myself and over the years have developed really good stress management skills, am actually surprisingly patient, and have built up a mostly healthy self esteem. I’ve managed to supersede what I thought was unattainable. My kids are a lot older, but somehow they test me, (and boundaries) and push buttons, a lot more now! 
These days though, in probably 95% of the situations, I only need to count to 5! Suddenly it works for me!

Because I’m different now!

So if you haven’t tried something in a while, but you know you’ve grown, maybe try it again?

But please be kind to you. Other people’s stories and what works for them are just examples to perhaps give you some guidance. You are NOT them. Keep searching for what works for you, and don’t give up!

And remember,

As we grow, there are always new things to discover about ourselves. 😉

Be extraordinary!

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(And no, it isn’t spelled wrong 😉 In the UK it’s ‘plough’, in the US it’s ‘plow’. I’ll go with the US spelling today 😉 )

Before a farmer plants his crop, he plows the field to prepare the soil. This turns over the top layer of soil and brings fresh nutrients to the surface. Sometimes he adds fertiliser and plant food, to ensure growth and healthiness for his crop.
Then he plants the seeds, waits for growth and reaps his harvest.

I know that you know. But I’m just going to remind you anyway 😉

We all have plans, dreams and hopes. But we’re never going to see them to fruition if we don’t prepare and then take action. Thinking about them is good. Thinking about the ways we can prepare is good. Researching those ways is good.

But nothing is going to happen until we actually apply them, and get plowing! 

It’s not always easy, I know. But there are no rainbows without the rain. You have to start somewhere and at least try!

And remember :

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In the words of Jimmy Johnson :

”The difference between ordinary and extraordinary is that little extra!”

Unicorns and Sparkles

I received a picture message from my friend this morning. We don’t often get to connect because our lives are busy. In fact, even though we live in the same town, we actually only get to see each other once every four months or so, when our schedules are in harmony. Those are the greatest times, and always filled with moments that make for the best memories. We ‘do’ those times properly, and pretty much block book five hours or so for each other. When her husband hears we’re getting together, he pretty much sighs and tells her, ‘I’ll see you tomorrow – I’ll be asleep when you get home’. 😛 (He adores me, so that’s a plus for our together time 😉 )

Her message to me this morning was such a special one – and I consider it one that we all need to hear from time to time. I’ve delved a little more deeply into it for blogging purposes and added some ‘stuff’.

The message was simple : You’re important and you matter to me, and I hope you will always know and remember that. You can call on me at anytime. I will always be your ‘mental’ friend – there to help care for your mental health when you need me, and there to just act crazy with you when you need me to.

Sadly, the message didn’t just ‘come out of the blue’. It came in the wake of an acquaintance we both have in common who went missing day before yesterday. This young lady is a mother of two (aged 10 and 3) but prone to depression. Drugs and alcohol have not done in her any favours as mood stabilisers. And she’s one of those girls who refuses to ‘talk about it’, because she’s ‘too strong for that’.

*Side note* When it comes to mental health, seeking help and speaking out are the bravest and strongest things you actually can do!

She was found last night – no harm to her person. Had apparently done a runner ‘to think’. And is still refusing to talk with friends and family about what is going on inside her head. The perception of many is that by choice, she is very much alone, locked in to herself. Those of us who are more aware know that when you are in a place of mental instability, there really are no conscious choices. 😦

The whole situation sparked an outburst of messages around town; everyone reassuring one another that ‘you’re not alone, you are important’ etc.

And although I don’t actually know any of you, I wanted to ‘put something out there’ for ‘my’ blogosphere to read. Perhaps someone will come to mind who could really use a quick message of encouragement and reassurance from you?

You need to remember that you’re important. Somehow, some way, you will always be a part of someone’s life, and that makes you important. I like to think that I’m a lot of people’s reason to smile….but I may also be the reason some people drink. 😛 Who knows? I’m all over the place 😉

But I matter. YOU matter. Because there will always be someone who will value you, and fill up the empty spaces in their life with pieces of you. (I am not speaking romantically – this is about all other relationships)

(And in my humble opinion, this is a really good reason for us to always try and have a positive impact on those around us. Not always easy, because we all have those moments where our spirit is downcast, and our attitudes suffer a bit and can be referred to as bad…but definitely worth not giving up – continuing to try, even if we fail. )

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photo credit : quotefancy.com

It’s easy, in times of trouble, to question our existence. It’s important, in those moments, to remember that someone out there actually needs us. That we have something to offer. Perhaps not to the entire world, but that doesn’t make us any less important.
Because the thing is that even as an individual, your existence still impacts the world.

Max Lucado once said something that I really liked, and actually printed out for my wall – he said that we are valuable because we exist. Not because of what we do, or what we have done, but simply because we are.

Anonymous once said something too that resonates such truth :

Your value doesn’t decrease based on someone’s inability to see your worth.

And…..just for fun…..

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Source : Facebook

So keep shining, my friends! 🙂