Why is it that we are so fond of negativity or cynicism or pessimism? I have this horrible feeling that we can be more eager to pass on negative stories than positive ones. Yuk! Please tell me I’m wrong and it’s just me, but I honestly don’t think so.
My Big Dream
My wife and I were baseball nuts before our son was born. We went to 10-15 games per year. Then we have a son who LOVES baseball.
“There are those who are good at cultivating life.”
Some mornings I sit in bed and write. But only after my morning routine of breakfast, meditation, spiritual readings and praying. This is one of those mornings. The line above in bold came from my reading of the Tao Te Ching, a book I read daily for profound Chinese wisdom.
Do you remember coming into the living room and seeing your first bicycle unwrapped and sitting by the Christmas tree—obviously left by Santa? How about your first, second or third trip to Disneyland? Or your first puppy? Or when you discovered you were really good at something?
You were so excited you could burst. Excitement, anticipation, novelty… but mostly awe. You were so awestruck that you were almost speechless except for the giggles and cheery noises you uttered.
Pam and I are at our annual retreat planning 2015 and how it’s going to directly impact this blog.
I think I need to make one thing clear as the New Year begins.
I love life. I love living it with gusto and freedom, but also with a deep sense of purpose. Living with purpose requires effort. Yuck! Except…it’s actually fun. It’s really fun being a “difference-maker!” But you gotta be ready to do the work.
I think you have to be a searcher for more meaning in life to read this blog. You’ll have to be a fearless searcher to implement the ideas I will put forth because the kind of change I’ll be proposing takes work and stamina and belief. But the result is worth it. You’ll be a different person.
The organized have been shopping for a month (or more). The prepared for at least a couple of weeks. Most of us lived in denial until a week ago or so.
But it’s now over, thank goodness. Or is it? Crap! We gotta take down the tree and lights and a plethora of Christmas garbage… it was beautiful. Now it’s just another stinking thing to do.
And oh no. We have to exchange some of our gifts or if you are a “sale-aphile,” then you’re out doing serious shopping with even greater hordes than before Christmas. This is NOT the season to be jolly. It’s the hangover, and more shopping just becomes taking some of the “dog that bit you.”
Take my advice and SAY NO. Don’t do it! You have more important things to do. In fact, in my mind today begins the best week of next year. Let me explain.
You can change or stay the same; there are no rules to this thing. We can make the best or the worst of it. I hope you make the best of it.
And I hope you see things that startle you.
I hope you feel things you never felt before.
I hope you meet people with a different point of view.
Benjamin Button (Movie voice over; letter to his daughter)
Have you noticed how susceptible you are to things that bring you a sense of awe—like sunsets, Christmas lights, puppies, art, fabulous architecture, landscapes, and so on? Do you recall how much joy and excitement you get when you see it or feel it? How the marvel of it goes right to your core, almost making you a different kind of person for that moment?
Oohlala, the feeling is magical! And yet… have you also noticed that you very rarely actively seek out such life-engaging moments? You (and I) just kind of hang around the ordinariness of the ordinary and then get surprised or startled by something awesome somewhat accidentally?!
Well, I noticed. A couple of years ago…
OKAY. OKAY. I know what you’re thinking… who does this guy think he is to change the lyrics of our most beloved St John Lennon? But, really, I haven’t changed the words as much as I’ve merely tweaked them.
If John Lennon thought the 60’s and 70‘s had their troubles they were nothing compared to what we face today in our own worlds: work, family, friends, health, money, rent, cars, kids, moving, savings, addictions, death, and shoot… I haven’t even brought up soccer and little league for crying out loud.
Our lives are crazy busy, crazy chaotic, and even crazier stressful.
In this post I’m not writing about peace vs. war. I’m writing about peace vs. life! Every stinking day there seems to come a time when we simply want to scream, “Gimme an frickin break!”
I know it sounds crazy, but Italy nearly ruined my life!
I was supposed to go to Spain for a month. Anchor in Madrid with friends then see the country, visit museums, draw and paint, eat, relax and visit the Barcelonian route of the main character in the spectacular novel Shadow of the Wind, by Carlos Ruiz Zafon. I had been planning it in my mind for months.
Then, as it turns out, that year—2013—was a milestone birthday for my wife who decided that Italy was what she wanted for her birthday present. I should clarify, she didn’t want the entire country under the tree as a present; she just wanted to visit. Milestone Birthday. What’s a guy to do? He goes to Italy, that’s what he does. Spain can wait.
Charlie Hedges describes how you can Re-Design a Life Of Meaning.