Fear of failure

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I never loved school – when I look back at my schooling, the one thing that always comes to mind was my fear of failure.  That was probably because we were constantly being taught that failure is a bad thing and we not only had to avoid it at all costs but also to always work harder.
As children we are often told by our parents and grandparents what we are not allowed to do or say or touch.  To avoid risk and potential failure or hurt and pain.
So we stick with those beliefs.

The negative reputation that failure gets follows you into your adulthood where you still feel that fear is a bad thing.
More often than not, you are not taught that failure might actually open up new doors for you.  You are not taught that failure is an opportunity to learn and grow as an individual.  You are not given the chance to discover what your strengths and weaknesses are and to really build on your strengths because you spend so much energy and time trying to fix the weaknesses.

If you could let the fear of failure go and bravely enter new places, discover new opportunities and take chances, you may just find something that you never even knew existed.
As uncomfortable as it is to fail, the fear of failing or avoidance of failure just holds you back.  It makes you want to stay in your comfort zone.
And you are worthy of doing so much more than just holding yourself back.
Jump in, try it, take a risk – great, great things might happen!

Big small blessings

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In a rough moment this week I was feeling very sorry for myself because my son was so sick… again.
So I was in the pharmacy… again and looking pathetically at a mother with her daughter picking out shampoo.  And I had a moment of jealousy (and anger) that they could be doing such a ‘normal’ thing when I spend so much time in doctor’s rooms and queuing for medication at the pharmacy.
Then I turned around and the woman behind me was with her really ill daughter who was recovering from heart surgery!
I very quickly shut up my pity party anthem that was playing in my head and wanted to cry at how lucky I am that although my son is ill, he doesn’t have a life threatening illness.
I got home feeling more peaceful and just wanted to hug the boy – except that he told me to give him space and let him concentrate on his very important game of Plants vs Zombies (I have no idea….)

It would do us all well to remember that our lives may be far from perfect but they are far more perfect than somebody else’s.
Be grateful for the blessings you have – even though they may seem small, they are huge to another person.

Fighting mediocrity

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mediocre
ˌmiːdɪˈəʊkə/
adjective

  1. of only average quality; not very good.

Mediocre is my worst word – I hate the idea of mediocrity.  I think it is because being mediocre shows no commitment.  It is neither good nor bad, just in the middle.
I truly believe that people who are the most stressed are the least mediocre people.  You get stressed because you are passionate about something and often people stand in your way.
They stand in your way because they are comfortable with their mediocrity and your passion, excitement and commitment are a serious threat to their comfort zone.  If you are not strong enough in your self belief, you will find it easy just to fall back and join the mediocre people.
Please don’t.
You are so amazing, interesting and unique.  You have so much to offer.  Don’t let anybody else destroy that!
Stop trying to fit in to please other people.
Start asserting your right to be an individual.
You are wonderful just as you are!great-spirits

Appreciating breathing

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I have been absolutely knocked down this week with bronchitis which made my asthma flair up as an added (no frills) bonus.
So I have to nebulise twice a day which means sitting still for 15 minutes, twice a day with a mask on my face doing deep breathing (and no talking).  Those of you who know me know that I never sit still – or if I do sit still, I’m usually doing something while I am sitting still.
Every time somebody tells me to breathe deeply and just be still and meditate for a few minutes, I reply to them that it is impossible for me to do that – I can’t sit still (or keep quiet but that’s another discussion for another day).
And now I am forced to do that – and I can’t even fold laundry while I’m doing it (yes, I tried!).

So now thanks to an illness, I am a convert to quietly sitting and breathing and I really think that once I don’t have rely on that horrible machine, I am going to carry on doing it anyway and call it meditation. I think it can be done and I would encourage everyone to just take a few minutes for silent breathing.

Life works in strange ways – sometimes you go through something bad or uncomfortable in order to learn something good.
I often preach that message but it is not until I actually experience it that I can really appreciate it.  I hate getting bronchitis but I cannot even start to tell you how much I appreciate a simple thing like being able to breathe when I get better.
And I never knew that I could meditate until I had to nebulise.  As horrible as these experiences are, they definitely leave us with a lesson.
The most responsible people who manage their finances well are often those who have been in debt.  Great relationships can come out of hurtful experiences.  Brilliant leaders are mostly people who have had to overcome a lot of obstacles.

Find grace in your own experiences and the lessons that you can gain from them.
You never know that you can do something until you are forced to and hopefully you will never have to look back from here.

Meeting a righteous person

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Jewish tradition states that at any one time in any generation there are 36 righteous people living on earth.
It’s a bit sad that it is only 36 but that is apparently how many there are.  The thing about these righteous people is that they are hidden – nobody knows who they are and even the righteous person doesn’t know that they are one of the 36.

Does it make a difference?
Maybe it does, because something that I learned while watching an episode of Transparent is that if we don’t know who these people are, we should treat everyone that we know and everyone that we meet as though they are one of these 36.
Okay so sometimes it is very clear who is not one of the 36 – or so we think – but it is not up to us to make that judgement.
It is up to us to be kind, gentle and caring to those around us.
Everyday you have the opportunity to make a difference in somebody else’s life or even in your own life if you can just shift your attitude to a more positive and hopeful one.

There is a great saying that it doesn’t matter if the glass is half full or half empty, the important thing is that it can be refilled.  Having a positive attitude towards people (even if you don’t really like them) can have a huge impact on them and on you.
You never know how that person is going to have an impact on you somewhere along the line.

So here is your mission:
– Be nice!
– Tell your nasty boss how much you like her shoes
– Tell your nagging mother that you appreciate that she cares
– Compliment your annoying colleague on their new hairstyle
– Ask the cashier how their day has been
– Smile at someone who frowns at you
– Challenge yourself to get somebody in the traffic to smile or wave back at you

You are going to be feel wonderful for doing these things and maybe, just maybe, you touched one of the 36…

Let them go

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This is something that you should never forget:

bad-people


If you have issues with people, the majority of the time it is because they have issues with themselves.
A person with a low self esteem can either work on building themselves up and improving their sense of self or they can bring others down to their level. Unfortunately, this is often the case and you are often on the receiving end of their sabotage.
This is not your issue.
As difficult as it is to do so, don’t allow it to become your issue. Don’t waste time hating someone who doesn’t deserve your time and energy.
Pick yourself up and don’t go back for more abuse. You are worth so much more than that!
Keep being the wonderful, beautiful and brave person that you are.

Thoughts on blessings

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This week has been a really horrible one on a lot of levels but for me one of the most horrific parts of the week was the news that 94 mentally ill patients have died in our province.  They died because they did not receive proper care.
It really opens up the conversation yet again about why there is such stigma and lack of education when it comes to mental health and illness.
My heart breaks for the families affected by this.

The lesson taken from this is how truly blessed anyone is to have access to healthcare.  Yes, it should be a right and not a blessing but unfortunately that is the way it is.
If you are not well but you have access to doctors and medication and therapists, you are lucky.
Take some time to appreciate that.
In a world where we are constantly comparing ourselves to other people, stop and look at how much you actually have.
Feeling sorry for yourself because you don’t have as much as the next person (seems to have) or you are not as healthy as somebody else is not going to help you at all.
You are so blessed to have what you have.
Don’t ever forget that!

Sitting in traffic and staying calm

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I’m sure there’s a lesson to be learned by sitting in traffic. It seems that I spend a frustrating amount of time sitting in my car and more often than not, I’m sitting in my car going nowhere.
After waiting in a queue for passports yesterday and being stuck in stand still traffic today I had time to think about those potential lessons.
This is what I think:
In today’s fast paced world, we could all use the time to slow down, be calm and let go of needing to always be in control.
Maybe that’s what queues and traffic are there for.
If there’s nowhere to go and nothing to do then we might as well use the time to practice being calm.
Learn to be patient. Be gracious in letting others go ahead in front of you even if you are in a hurry too.
Take the time to practice deep breathing.
Understand that as much as you always want to be in control (because it is much more comfortable to be in control) you are not actually always in charge.

I hope that you are going to spend more time this year just breathing.  I know that I am.

Thank you for being an inspiration

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Here’s to the brave ones:
The people that are brave enough to say no.
Who don’t stand for being treated badly or unfairly.
The people who do something about their problems rather than hiding away from them.
Those who are able to say “I am fine with being myself – don’t try to change me”

I hate the fact that I even have to use the word brave.  You shouldn’t have to be brave to be different.  You shouldn’t have to be brave to stand up for what you believe or to say how you are feeling.
Unfortunately, it has become difficult for people to say out loud how they really feel.  Because it is difficult to feel like you are different from everyone else.
The truth is that you are not different from everyone else – there are a lot of people going through hardships who also don’t want anyone to know or who see it as a sign of weakness to talk about their pain.
So what happens is you get a lot of people (apparently close to 40% of the population – although I think it is a higher number) who are all not feeling good and most of them put on a “mask”.  Then everybody thinks that everybody else is okay.

I am constantly inspired by the people who are prepared to drop the mask.  They are the people who say that they feel depressed, some that will admit that they are disappointed, those who say they are not sure if they were born in the right body, that they don’t want to follow the career that they were ‘meant’ to follow,  that maybe they married the wrong person…. The list is endless and there are people who speak up. They are the brave and inspiring ones.
I really hope that you are one of them.  Or that you plan to become one of them.
We need more people in the world like you!
Thank you for being an inspiration!

Asking for help – no, you are not a failure

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Happy new year!
May 2017 bring everything that you wish for yourself.

During my leisurely break, I was browsing online and I found this advice written by somebody called sassygaynicoo on what would be nice for a person to do for somebody who has depression:

Chances are their room is a disaster and they have -846 motivation to do anything about it.  Helping them tidy up will make them feel a little less overwhelmed.

Do their laundry.  Even small chores seem to pile up when a person is depressed and not having clean clothes won’t make them feel any better. Washing their bedding is also great.

Try to convince them to go for a short walk with you.  There is a good chance they will feel a lot better after.

If you can’t get them outside, at least open a window for fresh air and let some sunshine in.

Prepare them a healthy meal with some fresh fruit.  Many depressed people fall into bad eating patterns.

If they aren’t eating enough, make sure they are taking a multi-vitamin since not getting enough of a vitamin can cause depression.

Make them a warm, nice smelling bath.  Aromatherapy is a great way to treat depression and anxiety.

Write them a letter or card to read for when they’re feeling really bad.

Make them a recovery playlist with some of their favourite songs and anything uplifting.

Make them laugh.

Make them a cup of tea and sit with them.

Listen to them.

I’m sure that you wish that somebody would do any of these things for you.
Well, next time somebody asks what they can do for you (and I really hope they do), instead of saying “Don’t worry, I’m fine” ask them to do something for you from this list or anything that you think will help you.  “Bring me some cake” seems to work fine for me.

Make it your mission this year to be wonderfully you with no fear of being judged by anyone or being seen as needy and dependent.  You deserve care.  You really do.