It takes vigilance to be the guardian of thoughts, words, and deeds

How cognizant of what you say is directly related to the outcome you’ll get. If you continually speak of your life in terms that describe it as if you “never” feel good, things “never” turn out right, or “nothing” positive comes your way, you’ll more than likely end up being right.
It takes less energy to feel good than it does to feel bad. However, our biology, our parenting and our environment also have a part in our perceptions about how we engage in life. Negativity is like a big black hole with slippery sides. Once you fall in, it takes a lot of effort to crawl back up. There are also many people who become accommodated to the security of negativity. Our brains become habituated to our stories. One of my favorite metaphors for the above is “When you find yourself in a hole, stop digging!”
It takes vigilance to be the guardian of thoughts, words, and deeds; and you’re often at the mercy of years of conditioning that make you operate as if you’re on autopilot. The Buddhists say that “all suffering of mankind is produced by attachments to a previous condition of existence.” When you use language such as “if only,” “ I wish,” or “I can’t,” you’re dismissing the possibility of today in order to maintain the familiarity of the past or to assuage a fear of the future. You may think it’s easier to stay in an unhappy relationship or job or maintain habits that don’t serve you, but ultimately you’ll suffer the consequences.
Try to surround yourself with individuals who are supportive, but also can help you see solutions to your problems. A really good friendship allows for honesty, not the kind that is hurtful or self-serving, but one that offers straightforward, empathic advice from a loving place.
I don’t want everyone around me to agree with everything I do or say, and neither should you. We need to be called on our crazy stuff, otherwise, it will take on a life of its own and there won’t be room for anyone else. So many of us use familiar lines to keep ourselves stuck.
Here are some common statements that keep you limited, withered, and stuck in a black hole; they’re followed by my irreverent comebacks.

*I always get the slow line.” Well, I guess you’re destined to grow old in a line”

* It’s going to be a long day. “That’s interesting, I thought most days contained the same amount of time.”
* I only have two hands. “Wow, what an epiphany.”

* You never listen to me. “Why should I, you just keep saying the same thing over and over.” I’m only one person. “Really, I thought you were triplets.”

Keep in mind that if you say your negative thoughts out loud and increase their potential, you will also start to see some humor in your thought process.

Posted in Get a Life | Leave a comment

Life is not a Stress Rehearsal”

“ According to the Bloomberg Global Health Index a baby born in Italy can expect to live to be an octogenarian. When it comes to living a long life, Italy is the place to be. Even through they suffer from economic woes, and that 40% of their youngsters are out of jobs they rank first in being the healthiest in the world”. Ironically the United States comes in 34th with an obesity rate of 67.3 percent.
When I read the above I was honestly stunned. Part of me shouted, Yes, Yes, of course. My response is certainly predicated on the fact that I am Italian and have relatives that lived well into their nineties. I grew up watching many of them smoking, drinking wine, eating sausages, cheese, pasta and lots of expresso. They also ate a lot of vegetables and fruits. The Italians, like many other Europeans, smoke which should elicit a shorter life span but hasn’t in Italy. We have spent years eliminating smoking from our culture which I know is a much better choice, but it has not necessarily helped us to live longer.
Where the conundrum lies for me is the amount of effort that is put into trying to change health habits in America which don’t seem to be working. We continue to promote products that take the place of real food in lieu of food that replicates their taste through chemicals. A famous soda company recently unveiled a drink that has zero calories and no sugar. The replacement for the sugar is aspartame which has been shown to create health problems. The list of chemicals contained in some sodas and foods often feels analogous to what you might find on a paint can.
I think one of the most important issues that effect health and longevity is the fact that Italians are not workaholics. Their average workweek is 36 hours. They also take time to eat lunch, have four weeks vacation, and spend a lot of time with friends and family. We have become addicted to being available to our workplace 24/7. In order to break away from work, chores and our incredible attachment to gadgets, we try to fit in some down time when possible. Instead of making relaxation, fun, and connection to the important people in our lives, we try to find a space to give them somewhere in our crowded schedule.
We are also suffering from a great deal of stress which is the end product of feeling like we are on a runaway train. Our perpetual need to fill each day with multiple tasks and to keep trying to keep up with the constant flow of information is creating a culture riddled with anxiety. It’s time to start realizing that “ Life is not a Stress Rehearsal!”

Posted in Get a Life | 2 Comments