The many ways to contribute…They all connect us to each other

For most of us, the most powerful sense of meaning comes from doing something that makes us feel as if we’re making a contribution to the world. Making a contribution connects us to our community and our society as a whole, in a way that makes us feel better when we know that there’s something we’ve done to help someone else, particularly when that person is in need. There’s a reason that charity is an integral part of every world religion and most decent societies help other people  because it is very clearly, a vital component of life. There are so many ways to make a difference. Last week I was privileged to witness firsthand individuals who give their time and loving kindness to those who have served our country and have returned wounded. The facility for wounded warriors is staffed by extraordinary people who seem to have limitless energy and copious amounts of compassion. So often we get caught up in our own physical or mental pains that our world become incredibly insular. I have been struggling with joint pain that will necessitate two knee replacements. There are times when I rail against the universe as to “why me”? When I heard the stories of men and women, some of whom have suffered incredible trauma, it gave me new perspective on my own issues. My mother’s favorite quote was “ I cried when I had no shoes, till I saw the man with no feet”. Unfortunately, it is easy to forget how lucky we our since it is quite human to be involved with our own pain. One of the ways to sustain feeling fortunate about what life hands us is to find meaning and purpose. When we attach meaning to whatever we do or whatever fate befalls us, life seems to become more spiritual. Many of us become aggravated at the slightest inconveniences, taking time and energy to try to find whose fault it was or why we are always the one the proverbial bird finds to eliminate on. Perhaps taking a moment to stop your internal patter to think about one thing you appreciate about your life will help you reframe the situation. I leave you with one of my favorite quotes  by Barbara WInter“ When you are on the edge of all the light you know, and are about to step off into the darkness of the unknown, faith is knowing one of two things will happen: There will be something solid to stand on, or you will be taught to fly”.

Fatter and Fatter

How many times have you tried to lose weight and failed?
The average person who struggles with weight has been on many different programs and regained the weight in less than a year. Most of us are experts in finding excuses as to why we couldn’t maintain our losses. Pregnancies, children, relatives, spouses, jobs, menopause, age, you name it and it’s been used as away to fall off the diet wagon. Most of the time it’s because the diet we choose is not sustainable.

Goat milk for breakfast, yak eggs for lunch, and buffalo tartare are not very appetizing after a week or two. Of course, I’m being ridiculous, but if you check out most of the so-called plans configured to get you to lose the five pounds a week they promise, they’re usually predicated on boring regimens that end up driving you to eat five hot fudge sundaes at a sitting. The fact that the general population is getting fatter and fatter has created quite a conundrum for the medical community. Researchers in the field of weight loss are furtively seeking a solution.

Every week we are given the results of some study that speaks to the possibility of something that might be precipitating the increases in our waistlines. A virus has been implicated. I don’t know which one, but it certainly adds to my bag of excuses. I can recall a particular cold I got ten years ago that might be the culprit for some of my weight gain. Hanging out with people who are overweight seems to have some legs, albeit heavy ones. That could work for me, only my pals vary in size, so I guess I’ll have to have them weighed so I can spend more time with the heaviest one. I just won’t be able to tell her why.

Having a mate that likes to eat everything in sight is another problem, and so is how much stress you have. If you have a lot of stress and your partner overeat, you’ve won the “excuse” lotto. If the afore-mentioned doesn’t work for you, not to worry, the latest finding is that scientists have discovered “obesogens” found in plastic bottles, high fructose sugar, pizza boxes, vinyl flooring and shower curtains. So there you have it. If people are tired of your excuses, just tell them that you’ll soon be as slim as a knife because you’re not taking a shower anymore, eat pizza or walk on your kitchen floor.

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