Selfishness is the root of so many problems in our lives and in our world today. We want to have money; we want nice things; we want to be pampered; we want to have fun; we want to have power; we want to control everyone and everything around us. It is all about my needs and ME, ME, ME!!!
Some of us realize that we are selfish but many of us aren’t even aware of it because it has become a habit. We go through every day of our lives believing that we should have everything we want and if we do we will be happy. WRONG!! Being selfish will never make us happy except for a very short period of time. We might be happy when we get that new car, big house or promotion but when the initial excitement dies down, other problems in our lives bring back our unhappiness and discontentment.
Selfishness keeps you focused on yourself and stops you from focusing on others. If you want to be truly happy, you need to start focusing on other people and finding out what their needs are. Get your mind off yourself and look around for someone you can help. Become selfless instead of selfish.
Today think of some ways that you can help other people around you. Don’t go to bed until you can help at least 1 person every day. This can be a family member, a friend, a co-worker, a neighbour or even a stranger. Here are some ideas. Please add some of your own.
- cook a meal for a neighbour who is ill
- visit a sick friend
- babysit for a single mom or busy family (without getting paid)
- treat someone who is having financial difficulties to coffee or lunch
- shovel snow or cut grass for an elderly neighbour
- send a ‘thinking of you’ card to someone who needs some encouragement
- invite a hurting friend to a church service or small group meeting
- volunteer at a nursing home
- give a gift certificate to a co-worker who is struggling
- fill a Christmas gift basket for a needy family
- smile and say a friendly hello to everyone you meet
Did you know that everyone has a love language? A love language is the way that people speak and understand each other. As children we develop unique emotional patterns and we learn to love each other in a way that reflects how we were loved. When we build relationships, we tend to speak our own love language which can cause communication problems as we are not speaking the love language that the other person understands. We need to learn our own love language and that of other people around us so we can understand them better and show love in a meaningful way.
Last week I was very fortunate to see Gary a at a local church and hear him speak about his best-selling book, The 5 Love Languages. I have read several of his books and found them to be very informative and helpful. Learning these 5 love languages has helped save marriages all around the world.
The 5 love languages are:
1) Words of affirmation – these are verbal compliments, positive statements, words of appreciation
2) Quality time – this happens when you do something together and give your full attention to the other person with no distractions
3) Receiving gifts – gifts are visual symbols of love, tangible items that you receive
4) Acts of service – doing nice things for people, helping with the chores
5) Physical touch – hugs, kisses, holding hands a gentle touch
You can find out what your love language is by going to http://www.5lovelanguages.com and trying the test. We might have more than 1 love language and may have 2 that are close but there should be 1 primary love language that stands out the most. My biggest score was Acts of Service and my lowest score was Receiving Gifts. I feel very loved when someone does something nice for me like cooking a meal or doing the vacuuming. Yet when someone gives me a gift, it doesn’t give me the same warm, fuzzy feeling.
What is your love language?
When you ask people how they are doing today, the answer is often ‘busy’. Many people spend every waking hour involved in so many activities that they are exhausted by the end of the day. Between work, home, children, meetings, events, shopping and various other things, there is basically no time left for any down time. I spent most of my adult life being ‘busy’ all the time, thinking that the more I did, the more valuable I was. What was the result? Burnout, stress, frustration, unhappiness, depression! Everything we do has consequences and we have to make sure we are not wasting our precious time on unimportant things.
Keeping busy is good for our health but we have to make sure that we are busy doing things that will add value to our lives. When I was trying to be a ‘super-woman’ I did get a lot accomplished but the things I was doing didn’t account for much. Working long hours gave me more money to spend on stuff but it didn’t give me more time to spend with my children. Filling my time with meetings and other events helped me learn things but also gave me a lot of unnecessary stress. I missed a lot of the important things by keeping myself so ‘busy’.
I now fully know the importance of living at a slower pace and I try very hard to take the time and enjoy life – not just rush through every day. However, lately I’ve slipped back into being too ‘busy’. Thankfully it is only temporary and by the New Year my life should be slowing down again. My working hours have increased and we are also moving to a new house that needs renovations. Once we get everything fixed up and our stuff moved in, we will be able to take it easy again. I’m hoping that we will be all settled in by Christmas so we can enjoy the blessed season.
My posts will likely be a bit sporadic until my life gets back to normal (whatever that is) and I have some time to sit and think. So if you ask me how I am doing in the next few weeks, the answer will be ‘busy’!!
Having confidence is important if you want to be happy and successful in life. Having confidence means that you are:
C – COMFORTABLE with the way you look
O – OPEN-MINDED about learning new things
N – NAVIGATING through life with a positive perspective
F – FOSTERING goodwill
I – INFLUENCING others with your positive example
D – DEDICATED to helping others
E – ENCOURAGING others to make positive changes
N – NEVER willing to give up on yourself
C – CHOOSING to do the right thing
E – EXPECTING to reach your goals in life
Do you have confidence? No matter how difficult your life has been or what age you are, it is never too late to start building confidence. Do some research. Read some books. Join a support group. Get active! You CAN become confident. If you need some help, check out my website for more information and get started today!
We all collect lots of garbage in our lives and some of us keep dragging it with us. Watch this great video on how to get rid of the garbage in your life. I couldn’t have said it better myself!!
Being thankful is a choice. You can choose to be thankful for what you have or you can choose to be thankless for what you don’t have. Being thankful requires a positive attitude and provides a lot of benefits. Being thankless requires a negative attitude and has many disadvantages. Personally I have lived on both sides and I have determined that it is far better to have a positive attitude and choose to be thankful.
Research shows evidence that being thankful leads to positive physical, social and psychological results. In studies done, participants were divided into 2 groups:
- Group 1 was asked to think about what they could be thankful for and to spend a few minutes writing down their thoughts.
- Group 2 was asked to think about what they were not thankful for and to spend a few minutes writing down their thoughts.
Then the participants met weekly for the next 10 weeks to share their thoughts and continue with the written exercise. At the end of the study, participants were given some questions to answer. Here are the results:
- Group 1 experienced a more positive mood and felt a close connection to the other group members. They were motivated to stay active and felt better physically. They were inspired to help others and offer emotional support. In general they were happy and felt good about life.
- Group 2 experienced negative feelings and were not able to connect well with the other group members. They could not communicate without being critical and seemed unhappy about their lives. They indicated that they were not able to sleep well and they were not motivated to do anything to change their lives.
The results indicate that being thankful promotes healthy living. When we are thankful, we see things from a positive perspective and this helps build confidence.
Life will always throw curve balls at us and we all go through rough times. However, instead of worrying about what you don’t have or wishing your life could be different, find something to be thankful for. Sometimes it can be hard but if you look hard enough, there is always something. What can you choose to be thankful for today?
Parents have expectations about the future of their children. Many parents want their children to follow in their footsteps if they have a successful or prominent career. Other parents want their children to have a better life if they have struggled in a job they disliked or found difficult. Then there are parents who were not able to reach their goal and they try to get their child to fulfill their dreams. It is great to encourage our children to get a good education so they can pursue a promising career as long as we don’t try to force them into following our own expectations.
Are your children becoming what you want them to be or are they becoming what they want to be? Our children should not become a miniature version of ourselves unless it is something that they want to be. If you are a teacher and you have come from a long line of teachers in your family, you might try to convince your child to become a teacher. If you have been a factory worker and you don’t want your child to work in the same strenuous conditions, you might try to steer your child away from this trade. If you wanted to be a hockey player and were not able to achieve this goal, you might force your child to play hockey even though they are not interested.
We should try to guide our children in the direction they want to go. Sometimes when a child is small, they may show an interest in what their parents are doing and this is normal but it won’t likely last. We are all different and have unique abilities that may not always fit what we think. Parents should discuss ideas with their children and find out where their interests and strengths lie. Encourage your children to try new things and support them when they fail. Teach them how to learn from their mistakes and make better choices.
Children naturally want to please their parents and may work hard to achieve a goal, even if it isn’t their goal. Don’t let your child become frustrated and unhappy because they are following your expectations. Always consider their needs and interests.