A Spiritual Awakening

I thought this was on par 🙂

Twelve Symptoms of a Spiritual Awakening:

1. An increased tendency to let things happen rather than make them happen.
2. Frequent attacks of smiling.
3. Feelings of being connected with others and with nature.
4. Frequent overwhelming episodes of appreciation.
5. A tendency to think and act spontaneously rather than from fears based on past experiences.
6. A unmistakable ability to enjoy each and every moment.
7. A loss of ability to worry.
8. A loss of interest in conflict.
9. A loss of interest in interpreting the actions of others.
10. A loss of interest in judging others.
11. A loss of interest in judging self.
12. Gaining the ability to love without expecting anything in return.

-Anonymous

It Goes On

If it’s not something you’d want people to find out about, don’t do it. There’s a clear line that shouldn’t be crossed. We all know it’s there, but sometimes it’s easier to pretend it’s not, for whatever reason. The line, however invisible, is inarguably and unmistakably clear. If you want to risk the jump, suffer the consequences.

All too often it happens that we don’t know what we had until we’ve lost it. It also just so happens that we don’t know what we were missing until it arrived. The grass isn’t greener on the other side. Chances are, you’ll want to jump over the fence. “You may think the grass is greener on the other side, but if you took the time to water your own grass it would be just as green.”

Every single person has a purpose. It could be smiling at a passerby, or offering solace to a stranger. Find your purpose and follow the path it takes to get there. Stop thinking about what “could have been” and make it into a reality. Usually the biggest regrets are the ones where you could have tried but something held you back. No one is in charge of your happiness but you and when it comes to doing what you or getting what you want in life, don’t take “no” for an answer.

Don’t spend your life wishing it away. Be thankful for the here and now. Life really is a journey; it’s more about the ride than the destination. It’s easy to reach what you thought was your destination, and still want to seek more. So embrace the journey, however tumultuous, and keep “this too shall pass” on repeat in the back of your mind. But always remember: it WILL pass, good AND bad, so soak it all in and be thankful for the ride. After all, you only get one.

Sometimes the hardest things in life to get over or to accept are those things that we had no control over. So spend minimal time dwelling and trying to find a reason. Some things really DON’T have a reason… some things just can’t be explained away. Replace spending too much time on attempting to convince yourself of a justifiable reason with learning, growing, accepting, and loving. You’ll be a stronger person for it.

Say what needs to be said before it’s too late. Do what you want to do before opportunity passes you by. Time is a luxury that we’re not always afforded. Everything is always changing. Always. We usually just don’t see it coming. When change is anticipated, anxiety typically sets in. So roll with the punches, take the good with the bad, and always remember- “life goes on.”

A Success Story

Failing at something doesn’t make you a failure. Fall 6 times, rise 7. Failure would be the decision to sit down after that 6th fall. When someone tells you that you can’t do something, use that as motivation to prove them wrong. You can do anything you WANT to; don’t let the fear of failing keep you from trying.

No one is perfect. Society makes sure of that. So don’t even try. But always get up, dress up, show up, and do your absolute best. If you must strive for perfection, do it on your own terms, in your own standards. Don’t worry about what society says is perfect.

Always give 110% of yourself; people know when you’re not. That way, you’ll never have to make excuses for your failures. It’s much more respectable to know someone gave all they’ve got than knowing someone didn’t and opted to make an excuse after the fact.

Pick your battles wisely. Lover or fighter, you can’t go through life battleless. Fight systems, causes, or “things,” but never people. Maybe what a person stands for, but never people.

Treat people the way you want to be treated. Similarly, people will treat you how you let them treat you.

People can change. What a sad world we would live in if people really couldn’t change.

“Watch what people are cynical about, and one can discover what they lack.” The world is full of cynics who call themselves as idealists or realists. A lot of those people have just faced disappointment. Surround yourself with people who know your potential and push you to places you believed you could never go, even when–ESPECIALLY when– you doubt your own abilities.

I want to be a success story. I don’t care what society deems “successful.” I won’t drive the nicest car, I won’t have the “perfect” relationships, I won’t have the biggest bank account, and I won’t have the largest house. But I will fight for what I believe in, I will fight for what I love, and I will fight for what is right. I will love more than I thought I could, I will feel more than I thought was possible, and I will help as many people as I can along the way. How much more successful can a person (try to) be?

Who Sits in Your Front Row?

Invite your audience carefully. Not everyone is healthy enough to have front row seats in our lives. There are some people in your life that need to be loved from a distance. It’s amazing what you can accomplish when you let go of, or at least minimize, your time with draining, negative, incompatible, not-going-anywhere relationships/friendships. Observe the relationships around you… PAY ATTENTION!! Which ones lift and which ones lean? Which ones encourage and which ones discourage? Which ones are on a path of growth uphill and which ones are going downhill? When you leave certain people do you feel better or worse? Which ones always have drama or don’t really understand, know, or appreciate you? The more you seek quality, respect, growth, peace of mind, love, and truth around you, the easier it will become for you to decide who gets to sit in the front row and who should be moved to the balcony of your life. If you cannot change the people around you, change the people you’re around.

-Author Unknown

The Best is Yet to Come

Envy is a waste of your time; look around- you already have everything you need. Don’t compare your life to someone else’s. You probably wouldn’t walk a mile in their shoes if they’d let you. And hate? That’s an even bigger waste of time. Life is too short to spend hating anyone.

Regret. Regret is useless, too. You can’t change the circumstances of your past or the outcome they produced. “Make peace with your past so it won’t mess with your present.” Don’t dwell on the “could have, should have, would have”; it’ll eat you alive. You may not be able to change your past, but you can redirect your present for a more desirable future. Don’t settle.

Wherever you go, bring your own sunshine. Smile and wave at strangers and give a deserving person a compliment. You’ll probably never know what one small kind gesture can do for a person, but simple, random acts of kindness seldom go unnoticed. It always seems to work out that the ones who give the most, gain the most.

Things could always be worse. They really could. There are people not around anymore that would attest to that. However bad a situation is, it WILL change. Likewise, be cautious: however good a situation is, it will change. “If we all threw our problems in a pile and saw everyone else’s, we’d grab ours back.”

Apologizing for something you’ve done takes more courage than denying the truth. If you feel guilty about something you’ve done, you probably owe someone an apology. If you feel guilty, but don’t think you owe anyone an apology, you’re probably in denial. The upside to guilt is an acknowledgement of wrongdoing. Be weary of the ones who’ve done wrong and feel no guilt. They’re the “repeat offenders.”

Saying “I’m sorry” when you should is probably one of the most freeing expressions. And HOW you apologize to someone says more than the words “I’m sorry.” BUT if you do make the brave decision to apologize, “sorry” means “I won’t do it again.” So, if you apologize, don’t do it again.

“What other people think of you is none of your business.” Not everyone needs to like you. Not everyone will like you. That’s not your problem- it’s theirs. Don’t worry about what others are saying about you behind your back. Just keep doing the right things and eventually those people will find someone else to occupy their minds/time.

“The two most important days in your life are the day you were born… and the day you find out why.” Always remember to smile… the best is yet to come.

“Do It Anyway”

Borrowed from a Saint. Literally 🙂

People are often unreasonable, irrational and self-centered;
Forgive them anyway.

If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives;
Be kind anyway.

If you are successful, you will win some unfaithful friends and some genuine enemies;
Succeed anyway.

If you are honest and sincere, people may deceive you;
Be honest and sincere anyway.

What you spend years creating, others could destroy overnight; Create anyway.
If you find serenity and happiness, some may be jealous;
Be happy anyway.

The good you do today, will often be forgotten;
Do good anyway.

Give the best you have, and it may never be enough;
Give your best anyway.

In the final analysis, it is between you and God;
It was never between you and them anyway.

– Mother T

Sticks and Stones

Never let your experiences limit you. Don’t let them define you, either. The more you’ve been through, the more opportunity you’re given to help others.

A littered past can make for a clean future if you get rid of the trash. Wanting to change and changing are two entirely different concepts. And actions? They do speak louder than words.

Believe in the cliche, “fake it ’til you make it.” It works. Smile when you’re sad, laugh when you feel like crying, and pray the hardest when you hurt the most. “I know that, without all the suffering, the growth that I achieved would have been impossible.”

No matter how morally sound you think your foundation is, it’s still the foundation of a glass house. If you throw stones at others, what’s to stop them from throwing stones back at you?

Only say something about someone behind his/her back if you want him/her finding out. If that’s the case, just say it to his/her face. Be weary of those who talk to you about others behind their backs. It’s a likely indication they’d talk about you behind your back, too.

“You can tell more about a person by what he says about others than you can by what others say about him.” If you spend your time with people who only have negative things to say about other people, what does that say about you? Birds of a feather flock together. “Small minds discuss people; average minds discuss events; great minds discuss ideas.” Truth.

Don’t ever mistake someone’s kindness for weakness. Sometimes the nicest people have even mastered smiling at the people they dislike the most. Popular opinion holds these people to be fake, but really, they’re probably just accepting of most people. Who wants to start unnecessary drama, anyway? Also, keep your ears open to those people who mention how much they dislike drama… there’s a reason it’s on their brain.

If people worried less about what others were doing and more about themselves, a lot of things would work themselves out. Too often, people concern themselves with the actions of others. Love others, care about others, but don’t spend so much time talking about what they’re doing. If they need help, help them. If they need love (and we all need love), love them.

Being popular doesn’t make you well-liked, make-up doesn’t make you pretty, Gucci doesn’t make you fabulous, swearing doesn’t make you cool, and a Benz doesn’t make you rich. The most beautiful, happy, and rich people don’t always have “beauty” by society’s standards, the ideal life-situation(s) or picture-perfect lifestyle, or the biggest bank accounts.

A Work in Progress

People aren’t products of their pasts. Who you were a year ago or what you did yesterday doesn’t define the person you are this very second. “It’s not who you think you are that holds you back. It’s who you think you’re not.” If you keep your eyes open, you’ll see that those obstacles can become the passageways that lead to new beginnings and fresh starts. And remember- pain DOES nourish courage. “You can’t be brave if you’ve only had wonderful things happen to you.” Be thankful.

Don’t blame your past for your future… that’s a cop-out. How much easier is it to blame than accept? It’s not what happens to you that defines you; it’s how you handle the situation that does. The saying, “God never gives us more than we can handle” didn’t come to be because it’s untrue; you ARE stronger than the tasks that lie before you. Believe in yourself.

Difficulties and obstacles are put in our paths so that we can grow. The smart ones learn. Often times a person only truly finds himself/herself in the midst of adversity. Be thankful for those times- they’re blessings in disguise. Literally, “rock bottom become the solid foundation upon which I rebuilt my life.” Nothing could be more true. Rise above.

Life is too short to make every mistake on your own- learn from others. We’re human so we make mistakes. It’s unavoidable. But try to find the ones who actually learn from their mistakes. After all, bad company tends to corrupt good character. Overcome.

It’s always easier to fight for values, morals, and principles than it is to actually live up to them. Live and fight equally. Don’t compromise those values for someone else’s… they’re not the one(s) you have to answer to someday. Be courageous.

Sometimes it’s easier to accept the evil around you than it is to fight against it. That makes a person just as guilty as if he were actively participating in the evil. The world needs more tough-minded, kind-hearted, strong-willed people. Become one of those people. “Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only love can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.” Fight harder.

Forgiveness isn’t always reasonable; forgive quickly anyway. Love others, even when they don’t ask for it. Sometimes harsh words or silence scream “love me” the loudest. It helps your soul as much as theirs. Those people who just rub you the wrong way? Love those ones just a little bit harder. And always, always, always stand for the possibility of human redemption. Never forget: you were forgiven. Forgive always.

Pretty faces don’t always have the prettiest hearts. It’s better to have a beautiful soul than a beautiful face. Looks fade, but a soul shines forever. The most beautiful people have the kindest hearts. Be beautiful.

I’ve Learned.

I’ve learned that I can be a Christian and hold a temporary grudge. Just because I love mankind doesn’t mean that I have to like everyone at any given moment. I’ve learned that iron sharpens iron and you do become the company you choose to keep… so choose wisely. I’ve learned that it’s more admirable to be the woman who looks like she has it all together, but once you talk to her, you wonder how she hasn’t fallen apart. I’ve learned that, no matter how many dumb things I do or how much trouble I get myself into, my parents always have my back and think I’m a pretty cool kid. I’ve learned that the stereotypes I give to myself are the hardest ones to get over, but if I can get over those, I can see others for who they really are… and we’re probably a lot more alike than I previously would have thought. I’ve learned that forgiving people isn’t telling them what happened is OK; it’s telling yourself you’re ready to move on. Choosing to not let go of some memories only makes us puppets of the past. Likewise, I’ve learned that you shouldn’t ever judge someone by their past because they don’t live there anymore. I’ve learned that if you go digging for dirt, you WILL get your hands dirty. I’ve learned that anger breeds hate and forgiveness nurtures love. I’ve learned that we all have scars from our pasts, but if we can use our pain to help someone else instead of using it as an excuse to justify poor behavior and bad decisions, the world would slowly become a better place. And I’ve learned that if you choose to take that rocky road with someone, you’ll only become stronger because of it… and people may have opinions otherwise, but it’s only because they’ve never walked your walk or chosen your path- and that’s OK.