3 Day Quote Challenge – Day 2 

We’re half way through the week! And I’m here to share my quote for day 2…


I love these words because they are a reminder to me of how much personal growth I’ve achieved in the past year. It’s been said, until you learn how to have a healthy relationship with yourself, you’ll never be able to build healthy relationships with others. I’ve learned that you can’t rely on others to support you, or believe in you, or lead you in the direction you need to be going in life. You have to learn what’s best for you, what fulfills you in life, then act on it, whether other people are on the same page as you or not.Writing is a perfect example. You could spend hours pouring your heart out on paper, and you might very well be the only person that reads it or appreciates it. But that doesn’t mean it didn’t accomplish something. The more we focus on doing things simply because they’re good for us or they make us happy, rather than for instant gratification or attention, the more content we will be. 

Now the three bloggers I am nominating today are:

Ugly Forever Blog
Stories From My Diary
Loud Thoughts Voiced Out

The rules of the challenge are as follows:
1. Three quotes over three days
2. Thank the person who nominated you
3. Three nominees each day to complete the challenge
4. Inform the nominees

3 Day Quote Challenge

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Hello to all my readers! I was nominated by my blogging friend Angela at Never Forget, Never Regret to join in on the 3 Day Quote Challenge, which I’m more than happy to participate in (as you can see from the majority of my posts, I always try to include an inspirational/relevant quote). I know from personal experience there have been many times where I felt discouraged, unmotivated, uninspired, and then I came across a piece of wisdom that was exactly what I needed to hear. That being said, here’s my quote for day 1!

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The older I get, the more experience in life I gain, the more I recognize the value in consistently living my life with the “glass half full” outlook. I don’t always succeed, but when I do, my days are brighter, I’m more productive, and I know the impression I have on others (especially my children) is a favorable one. Just as negativity breeds negativity, optimism breeds optimism. It’s just a matter of us making a conscious decision each day as to which end of the spectrum we want to be on.

The three talented bloggers I would like to nominate to participate in the challenge are:

To Those Who Have Ears

Keekel

Millie Schmidt

The rules of the challenge are as follows:

1. Three quotes over three days

2. Thank the person who nominated you

3. Three nominees each day to complete the challenge

4. Inform the nominees

Hope you all are having a great week! See you tomorrow for day two of the challenge!

 

Thoughtful Thursday

My quote or “thought” for today comes from Allan Lokos, author of one of the most insightful books I’ve ever read: “Patience: The Art of Peaceful Living”.

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(From the book Pocket Peace: Effective Practices for Enlightened Living)

Being honest with ourselves and about ourselves is crucial in our quest to become the best version of “us” that we can be. It may not be easy to address our own faults, but the end result of self awareness, self restraint, and the practice of healthier habits (whether it’s our reaction to trying situations, our dealings with others, or even our dealings with ourselves), is a beautiful one. I truly believe in never becoming complacent with who we are. Rather, always striving to become a more well rounded, compassionate, contributing member of society.

I hope everyone is having a positive week!

Inspiration

I gave in this morning to a moment (or two) of self pity. Yes, I threw myself a little pity party and I was the only sad soul to attend. My reasons having been pretty inconsequential. Comprised of both situations that I had no control over entirely, as well as those I could ultimately control, just not in that very moment. I let it eat at me for a bit. But then, I did something that I’ve become progressively better at (proud moment…drum roll please); I stopped. I turned the anxious negativity off like a faucet and decided that wasn’t the way I was going to spend the rest of this perfectly good day.

Sometimes in order to redirect our thinking, we need a little perspective. As I sat behind the wheel of my car during my trip home from the morning school rounds, a story came to mind. A story I came across last year about a man whose life, whose struggles and subsequent accomplishments left a lasting impression on me. This man’s name is Michael Naranjo.

Michael is a famous Native American sculptor. The unique (and awe-inspiring) thing about this artist, beyond his abundance of talent, is that he is completely blind and has limited use of his right hand. He is known by some as “the artist who sees with his hands”.


This piece is called “Spirits Soaring”

In his early twenties, Michael received notice that his service was needed in the U.S. Army. Mind you, Michael had been raised on a Native American reservation in New Mexico. That assignment essentially meant he would be fighting to protect a country that had “historically treated his people poorly, without honor”. Talk about mixed feelings! However, just six weeks into his time served in Vietnam, this young soldier was hit by a grenade.

During one interview, when recalling his initial hospital stay after sustaining his injuries, he said “he kept reminding himself that he was alive and he was able to think. He felt that as long as his  mind was clear he would be okay.” That measure of optimism is something I just can’t fathom. To be able to turn what most would consider an incredibly grim situation into a positive. That mentality still holds true with the artist today. In a more recent interview with the Albuquerque Journal, Michael says of his career: “Sculpture is what I wanted to do. Somehow it lends itself to touch. So it worked out, even with one hand and no eyes. I’m fortunate that I’m doing what I always wanted to do.”

This story will always serve as inspiration to me and a reminder that our circumstances only affect us as much as we let them. The one valuable thing that we have total control over is our mindset. I hope that you can take the time to view some of this man’s works of art and that you may find some inspiration of your own today. Is there someone in particular whose story has touched you?

(Unless otherwise noted, quotes are from the book Patience: The Art of Peaceful Living by Allan Lokos)

 

Thoughtful Thursday

I’m not sure if Thoughtful Thursday is really a thing, but oh well, I’m going with it. Here is my thought (quote) for the day. I have always felt like this is one of the truest quotes I’ve ever read, not to mention one I can relate the most to….

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Despite the fact that lack of time can be quite a frustrating feeling, I suppose the beauty in it is that every day is a blessing and a day worth living, even if it’s not all we wanted it to be.

Happy Thursday friends. Make it a good one!

 

Clarity 

It’s Saturday morning in early September. A pretty perfect Saturday morning I might add. As I sit alone on the front porch, hair unbrushed, not a stitch of makeup on my face; I embrace the pureness of being me. Taking in my surroundings, I watch as the neighbors scurry about, busy with their weekend chores. I wince at the sun as it pokes through the overgrown trees in my yard and I feel the breeze against my bare arms. The foam from my second latte tingles against my top lip. I’d say I’m somewhat addicted to these things… one cup always leads to a second. The flavor is subtle, yet satisfying and the warmth brings a sort of indescribable comfort. I’m reminded of the first time I drank one of these particular lattes. Christmas day two years ago. Sitting on my mothers couch in a big warm polkadot robe. That was such a good day. Just the two of us, nowhere to be….pj’s, lattes, and movies.

Realistically, there are 100 different things I could or should be doing this morning… mopping floors, making beds, scrubbing toilets, sifting through that nagging pile of mail. But in this moment, I’ve chosen my mental well being over the to do list. In fact, the older I get the more I realize the value in allowing myself to be alone and uninterrupted in my thoughts. A concept that at one time seemed downright scary to me.

Truth is, I was anxious to crack open the book that arrived in a box on my doorstep yesterday. It’s a book that was recommended to me by a fellow blogger, one whose writing has become beyond inspirational to me. The book focuses on our ability to cope with life when things don’t go the way we planned and was written by an American Buddhist woman. Buddhist teachings are something that have increasingly gained my intrigue over the past few years. Sure enough, I finish the very first chapter (all of four and a half pages) and I realize it is exactly what I needed. Funny thing is, this happens to me more and more often lately. I read or hear something at the exact moment in time when I need to be inspired or put things into perspective. Maybe it’s because I’ve become more observant; maybe it’s because I’m searching harder with ears and eyes open wider than ever in my life. Either way, it’s a constant reminder to me of the value and power of words and the realization that we have so much to gain from others’ knowledge.

What I’m reading is about fear. How it’s inevitable in life and even the universe’s tiniest creatures experience it. How fear means that we are moving closer to the truth and when we run away from it we are doing ourselves a disservice by missing out on the present moment. She talks about our natural inclination to run from it, to escape. Her words resonate with me because I’ve been there so many times in the past few years, running without even realizing it. Coincidently, I was sitting at a party recently and as I looked around I noticed everyone was drinking and smoking heavily and my first thought was “what are they trying to escape from?” And in that moment it became clear to me yet again that not only did I not need an escape, I didn’t want one. Whether it’s fear, sadness, loss, joyfulness, peace, or any of the transient emotions we experience on a regular basis, they are all beautiful in their own right and worthy of being felt completely because they are an indication that we are not only alive, but that we are living.

Recently I learned a new term: Monachopsis. It means “The subtle but persistent feeling of being out of place.” That pretty accurately describes what I’ve felt in the past year. I believe it’s because of the aforementioned epiphany, the revelation that so many people around us are fearful of life and feeling and look for any means possible to escape. And that’s not a life that’s meant for me. I’m here to feel, and to feel deeply. To bask in the present moment whether it’s good or bad or just can’t be measured one way or another. Because the truth (albeit scary) is that I will never get that moment back and that moment, in the long run, will somehow shape me into the person I was meant to be all along.

So as I sit here, enjoying the simplicity and yet the profoundness of this moment of clarity in my mind, I feel at peace. Confident in the notion that whatever the rest of this year brings my way, I can face it head on and I will continue to evolve. Continue to grow and inspire and be inspired. Continue to feel, whatever that feeling may be, and to embrace it rather than escape from it. And maybe, just maybe, turn it into something beautiful.


“The future is completely open and we are writing it moment to moment.” ~ Pema Chodron