habits

Mean people

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For life of me I do not understand mean people.  I know what bitchy is, and I know what angry is and I am fine with both those in limited quantities.  I mean that’s just part of human nature.  Who among us hasn’t had a bad day? But mean is something I will never comprehend.

I am getting a first hand lesson in the power of mean.  But I have also realized that I can take away that power of mean simply by stepping outside my feelings and observing as if I were a third party. Let me tell you what I have seen as that third party.

I have seen the depth of despair and confusion in the eyes of the mean person.  I have witness someone out of control, unable to stop themselves long enough to find the right words.  I have seen the face of hate.  In their state of meanness, which to me is void of all love, they scan their brains quickly taunting me to engage.  But I don’t.  I have learned to step outside of myself, and observe.  It’s a weird position, and quite new to me.  In the past I would definitely shoot back and lose no matter what.  No one ever wins in “mean.”

It’s shocking to me, because now I see it so clearly.  Before now I would engage and not be able to think straight.

I don’t want someone in my life that treats me poorly.  I don’t want someone in my life that holds anger and hostilities towards me.  For whatever reasons, unknown to me, I am the one that receives what ever sh*t they want to throw.   I have even received the silent treatment, which is hysterical to watch from afar, as if I care to talk to someone so mean.

Mean people don’t seem to know about love.  They just don’t.  They don’t know how to show it, give it, receive it or feel it.  They may have read about it but it’s just not in their nature.  Unless they chose to learn about it and change their core beliefs, they will continue to live on with the weight of bitterness, hate and anger baring down on their souls. I don’t even think they know they are missing out on anything.

You see it’s not about making points, or winning an argument, it’s all about what you want in your life.  A cold loveless existence just isn’t for me.  As I declutter I am purging my thoughts that someone else will ever change.

Instead I have changed.  I have changed by not taking in the hostility anymore. I find this approach both powerful and liberating.  Any sadness I held for what could have been is gone.   I have throw away all my “could-have-been(s).”

Cheers!

Here is a more in depth look at “How to Combat Emotional Warfare and Root Out the Manipulative, Abusive People in Your Life” (this article showed up in my email just now-weird)

Tip: Learn to protect yourself;  just walk away if someone is treating you unkindly.

Inspiration: “Anger and intolerance are the enemies of correct understanding.”- Mohandas K. Gandhi

One-day one -thing: Stop thinking about what could-have-been.

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Nature and My Nature

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The only thing I can count on is nature. I can count on it to do whatever the h%ll it wants when it wants, except for the bazillion things it does everyday that is expected and necessary for the world to continue.

I mean the sun rising is a good thing. Even if it is behind the clouds, it’s there. In the the spring, seedlings spout. In the winter, snow falls….I am sure you get my point.

I also would like to run the idea past you that weather is the expression of nature’s feelings and they are all required to make everything work. Just like we need to express our feelings. We can’t fake it. Even when we try many people can see right through a disingenuous nature.

Here’s my issue, maybe you can relate.

I expect too much out of everybody and everything. So a few years ago I decided I would drop all that. I would stop expecting anything. When I first started this it was great, nothing bothered me. Nothing. I expected nothing, which in turn created a shield. This shield was nothing more than me caring less, an “I could care less” attitude.

The truth is that I do care. And by transferring my expectations to a place that would protect me, (into the “I don’t care” category) I gave away pieces of myself. Face it, if you get disappointed or hurt because your “too high” expectations aren’t met, then get rid of those feelings (expectations) and lose the pain. This is a failed policy – do not attempt.

When you lower your expectations, you then are surrounded with less of the standards that got you through your entire life. If I expect nothing, I will get nothing, and that will be okay. Only it’s not okay. It’s just lowering yourself to where nothing matters, because if it mattered then you would have expectations.

birds of a feather.......

I say raise your expectations. Raise them first for yourself, then for those around you. Raise them as high as you want. The higher the better. The sky is the limit!

Those people and issues that disappoint you are going to disappoint you whether or not you care. By actually caring, you’ll be able to identify more clearly that which you want to keep in your life and that which you want to dis-card.

And since this blog is about de-cluttering this sounds like a perfect opportunity to recognize for once and for all – some people and some situations will never be a good fit for your life. Forget about them. Donate them to people who are similar birds. Move on and find a flock that is a better fit.

Phew- I feel better getting this out of my system. Cheers!!!!

Post script: This post stems from being told my entire life that I expect too much out of people. But that is only according to the low standards of the person who drilled that message into my head.

Tip: Try to learn something new everyday.

Inspiration: ” Set your expectations high; find men and women whose integrity and values you respect; get their agreement on a course of action; and give them your ultimate trust.” ~ John Akers

One-day one-thing: Write a letter to yourself.

Exactly what are you going to do?

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So another year’s over, and what have you done?

I’ve made excuses as to why I can’t get past my personal road blocks. That stops today. I know it’s cold as heck out there, and personally I am not a snow bird, but I have let the weather squelch my forward momentum, and for no good reason.

If I told you that everything inside this house was sorted and reduced to a minimum I would be only playing make believe. That would be easy to do, but it wouldn’t help me in any way. Oh I know I said I can’t sell anything in a garage sale in the snow, but what about all those pesky little things…like my belts.

Because little things don’t take up a lot of space they seem to be allowed to stick around. This is not good. They have to go.

No matter how large or how small your crap is, you have to get rid of it. Space displacement is not the determining factor when eliminating clutter and crap in your life. Think about it like a junk drawer. Who wants it? Who likes it? Every little space, drawer and/or container filled–I can’t even breathe when I think about it this way.

I read something recently, that said storage isn’t good. It only serves as vehicle to neatly hide your junk. It doesn’t solve any deeper issues, and it does not advance you to a goal of living better with less.

Advisory: Don’t go to Target, January is “store your stuff” month, containers galore on sale! All so you can make more room to buy more useless stuff, from guess who? -Target.

So for this week, and for the rest of these gloomy winter months, I will work on the little things in the little drawers and in the little containers. I actually wonder what I might find.

Cheers.

Tip: If there is something that needs to be fixed that you have been putting off – bite the bullet and fix it.

Inspiration: ” Now that it’s all over, what did you really do yesterday that’s worth mentioning?” ~Coleman Cox

One-day one-day: Old stationary-clear it out, when is the last time you actually wrote a letter?

The 1,2,3 of Words

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I had already set my New’s Resolution to stop swearing, then I realize it was more than that.

It is not only the about words but also about what is behind the words.  An anger or a rage lives there.  Who needs that?  We have all witness someone who gets angry.  It can make us uncomfortable,  it can frighten us and change the mood of an entire experience.

We can easily see what we don’t like about it in others, but many times when we do it, we feel perfectly justified.  We become entitled and self-righteous, “I’m just telling it like it is.”   (again, I am speaking for myself) 

What we are really doing is hurting those around us and ourselves, even if that is not our intention.

All words carry energy.   The old saying “stick and stones” isn’t true. In fact, it is plain false. Even when you are not swearing, but just talking negatively without fore thought or speaking with an “attitude.”- those words cause damage.  Each word is what you are as you speak.  That is what you are contributing to the world, to the greater good.

Is what you say good?

Words to Promote Positive Changes in the World by Jill Lawson- addresses the importance of words in her short and to the point article.  She breaks it down to three items.

1) Avoid idle chat, gossip and words that intend to hurt.

2) Speak your truth.

3) Be a good listener.

Also in The Four Agreements, one of the four agreements is:

Be Impeccable with your Word:  Speak with integrity. Say only what you mean. Avoid using the Word to speak against yourself or to gossip about others. Use the power of your Word in the direction of truth and love.

So I shall do my best, starting today, even though I said it was a New Year’s resolution.  This will take practice.  I know change is hard and change takes time, but I want to change.  So I have half the battle won already.  Cheers!

Inspiration:  “Whatever words we utter should be chosen with care for people will hear them and be influenced by them for good or ill. ” ~ Buddha

Schizophrenic Friday, Schizophrenic Saturday

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Days aren’t just days any longer. We have evolved to a point where certain days are used to market goods, or support movements, or promote whatever even pickles.

Today is Black Friday and  Support Small Business day is Saturday and  Buy Nothing day is both Friday and Saturday, depending on where you live.

For me all this doesn’t matter.  I think everyday should be support small business day, and every other day should be buy nothing day.  Black Friday is nothing more than a flashing red alert signalling to me to stay out of any shopping area.

We consume too much and produce too little. I am as guilty as the next person.  My first instinct is to buy.  I have to fight it.  Even though I know I want to save money right now, when I see something I find appealing I think:  Oh, I should get that, before it’s gone.

That’s one of many thoughts of a recovering shopaholic.   I also caught myself saying, “We should get that because the one you have will wear out eventually.”  I actually heard myself, took a step back and left without buying anything. I can’t believe that after all this time those thoughts still are at the forefront of my mind.

Maybe it is really some sort of addictive condition?  I never believed that I was certifiably a “shopaholic.”  Mind you you, I didn’t buy the things I saw the other day but, WOW, I wanted to.  And sitting here right now, I realized I didn’t even snap a photo of the thing I wanted to buy.

I will go back today and take a photo.  It was a mirrored covered box, which I certainly without a doubt do not need.   But I am drawn to mirrored items.  My favorite color is clear.  Water in all its forms fascinates me, and mirrors reflect like water.

Normally, I take pictures of things I like but either can’t buy,  or can’t keep, or look interesting but I don’t want.   Taking photos is  one of my many coping mechanisms and it’s very effective.

I need to remember to stay the course of de-cluttering and saving money and not buying “stuff.”  With the cold weather creepy in it’s so easy to forget about the garage and the storage unit.  Out of sight out of mind.

I don’t want more stuff.  I have too much stuff.  Less is more.

Cheers!

Tip: Put a rubber band on your wrist, snap it before you make a buying decisions. (ouch)

Inspiration:“Obstacles are those things you see when you take your eyes off the goal.”- Hannah More

One-day one thing: Sort make-up again.

Put Your Mind to Work.

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Less is more. More what? Mo’ better?

Seriously though; Less is easier, more peaceful,  more relaxing,  more real and it provides more freedom,  more or less.

When I look at our storage unit or the garage I can hardly breathe.  Instantaneously stress builds inside my body, this also happens when I only just think about it.  Imagine having all that stress and stuff in your home.  God, it’s no wonder I couldn’t think straight.  Always thinking about the mess, the stuff I needed to sort, or the stuff I would store safely to sort later.

Always later, but always in my mind somewhere.  “I’ll do a box a day.” or maybe this weekend “I’ll work on the basement.” Blah, blah, blah.  It never got done, and obviously I am still working on it.  I imagine there are deep seeded reasons for accumulating.  I can tell you I have a million reasons I could rattle off, but those aren’t true reasons, those are my “rationalizations.”

The bright side;  just realizing that you are rationalizing your situation is huge.  No matter what the problem, we are experts at convincing ourselves why it is, and why it can’t be changed.  Certified experts.

Where we fall down is when it comes to telling that expert ,”Hey expert, you don’t know sh*t.”  Take any issue right now, and ask yourself, am I clinging to this because it makes me feel better, or and I clinging to this because it’s easier than letting it go?

We all know there are things we can’t change, and things we can change.  That’s just life.  What you ALWAYS can change is the way you choose to think, or how you choose to react to  your individual predicament.  In other words, make your mind work for you instead of against you.

I will be testing my theory this Thanksgiving.  I know I am not alone.  Many people have family issues that tend to erupt during holidays.   It’s going to be a challenge.  But this time around I feel like I can handle it.   I almost feel invincible.  Like the old saying:” I’m rubber, you’re glue.  Everything you say bounces off me and sticks on you.” ( such a mature saying, but I love it )

It will only be a few awkward hours of my life. Bring it on. Cheers.

Tip: You don’t have to own other people words.

Inspiration: ” People may doubt what you say, but they will believe what you do. ” ~Lewis Cass

One-day one-thing: Take winter clothes box to donation center.

Take Me Away….I’m not going anywhere.

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Far far away, take me  please.  That’s what I need.  A break.

I don’t even care about my stuff.  Sometimes I wish it would all burn in a fire.

( I am pretty sour as I write this)

In the past when I felt like this, I used to fantasize about packing a light bag, taking a wad of cash and my American Express to the airport and just picking some random flight to someplace else.  I never did that. ( am I repeating myself ? )

Now, my life has responsibilities.  And I’m okay with that, but man, sometimes, I [you] just need a break.

Anyway, I have no choice I have to keep plugging along. We all do.

Source: “The Ruins of Detroit” by Yves Marchand and Romain Meffre published by Steidl, www.steidlville.com

(By the way, the house I saw today wasn’t the “one.”)

Next week, two of my three children are coming home for a short visit, so that will be nice. Thanksgiving day itself will be challenging.  After that I will be looking forward to a road trip to New York and a weekend in the city.  So this is all good stuff.  Then the holidays and closing the business books on yet another year.

It’s all going to fly by so so fast. Which is all the more reason to be grounded and prepared.  There are no do overs.

My mission is to make the best of these times.  Forget the challenges and enjoy.  Express gratitude.  Live in the moment.  These all require mindful actions.  In other words, I will have to work at this.

Here are 5 good tips to make it through the holidays without a meltdown:

1.) Watch what you drink:  During winter we tend to get dehydrated, so carry a water bottle with you even if it is snowing.  Moderation is key on alcohol intake, you’ll thank me in the morning.

2.) Become a duck but don’t quack: Let any little irritating comments roll off your back, don’t say a word or acknowledge the comment in anyway.

3.) Try something new. Celebrate some part of the holidays in a new way. This is fun for everyone, because it’s new and it brings people together.

4.) Reaching out to someone is a great way be in the spirit of the holidays and it helps lift any holiday depression.  Be inclusive.

5.) Expect nothing.  This one warrants repeating; expect nothing.

There are so many other things you can do rather than be a sour puss.  Google it if you find you need more advice.

Right now I’m drinking a Yuengling,wow since 1829,  and it’s helping my sour disposition disappear.  Simple pleasures are the best.  Cheers!

Tip: Do your exercise, especially when you feel down.  That’s when it is most important!

Inspiration: “My grandmother started walking five miles a day when she was sixty. She’s ninety-seven now, and we don’t know where the hell she is.”~ Ellen DeGeneres

One-day one-thing: Figure out something new to do for this holiday season.