freedom · gratitude

Looking Inside the Mind of an Optimist

“Never mention the worst. Drop it out of your consciousness. This practice will bring all of your powers to focus on the attainment of the best. It will bring the best to you”. ~ Norman Vincent Peale.

2011 is the first year in which I have actually gone out and purchased a Gratitude Diary and started to make use of it immediately.

You see, it’s all a part of my master plan. I have chosen my word for the year, for the theme which I have chosen to live by throughout all of this year.

My chosen word is “Freedom” and a main aspect of my theme that I am aiming to achieve is freedom from unwanted thoughts.

I love the word “Freedom”. It encompasses such a wide range of aspects, all relevant to the ultimate achievement of my goal to attain freedom.

Like all new habits, banishing unwanted thoughts from your mind takes time. I know that is true for me. The easiest thing to do, and the biggest mistake to make, is to allow your thoughts to wander off, unchecked, when you are wishing to form your new habit!

Reining in your thoughts could be likened to beginning a healthy eating plan, or a new exercise regime. Old habits have a happy knack of dying hard.

But anything worthwhile is worth sticking to and before long a whole new series of habits have taken the place of the old ones.

Another point I will be paying particular attention to is, as Norman Vincent Peale says in the above quote, “never mention the worst”.

If mention of the unwanted must be made, I have discovered through many years of practise that your statement can be turned around, from the negative to the positive.

It’s the old scenario of not saying that your glass is half empty, but rather your glass is half full!

Example : You could complain about not having any room in your cupboards, due to having too much unwanted “stuff” stashed away inside of them….OR….

You could tell the story of how much pleasure you will feel when you have discarded all of your unwanted possessions, leaving you with available space inside the cupboards.

It’s a subtle difference and it can change your whole mindset, by focussing on the positive scenario.

That’s where a Gratitude Diary can make a huge difference to your life, forcing your thoughts into a state of appreciation, hence forming a whole new habit, for you to easily live by.

I’m a firm believer that regardless of how dreadful any situation may appear to be, especially when it has just occurred and feelings are raw, there is always a reason for the event taking place.

Sometimes it may take a little bit of deeper delving into a situation, to discover the message the Universe is sending. Don’t give up ~ search hard enough and you will find your answers.

Stay optimistic, show appreciation and the best will find you. 🙂

Footnote : Today I can celebrate, as this is my one hundredth post here at Home Life Online; Everyday Inspirations.

Today, I am grateful for having come up with 100 ideas for topics to write about!   Jo.

friends · gratitude · happiness

People Come Into Your Life for a Reason, a Season or a Lifetime

Many months ago, an email arrived in my inbox, one which stood out from the standard “forwards” I regularly receive from my friends.

This email defined friendships; and the words were memorable.

Yesterday, as I contemplated the many topics that I could cover during the month of January, in keeping with the theme of “friends”, the NaBloPoMo theme for the month, I wondered if I still had a copy of the old email.

My wondering soon came to an end, however, when another copy of the same email arrived late last night, not surprisingly from a very dear friend who lives on the other side of the world from me! (That was a case of the Law of Attraction at its best!!)

The email defines the various friends who find us during the journey of our lives, dividing the friendships into three categories ~ those who are there for a Reason, a Season or a Lifetime.

When Someone is in Your Life for a Reason

When a friend appears in your life for a reason, they are there to meet a need you have at that time, such as to offer their guidance and support throughout the course of a difficulty you may be experiencing.

They seem to be sent by God, to assist you during a physical, emotional or spiritual difficulty.

Then, without warning, something happens to bring the friendship to an end.

They leave your life, perhaps due to an argument you have with them. The reason for them appearing in your life has been fulfilled, your prayers have been answered and it is time for them to move on.

When Someone is in Your Life for a Season

When a friend comes into your life for a season, it is your turn to help, enabling you to share, grow or learn.

This friend is likely to bring peace, happiness and laughter to your life, in huge doses!

Believe in the friendship, it is very real, but only for a season.

Lifetime Friendships

The purpose of lifetime friendships is to teach you lessons which will last a lifetime, lessons to be built upon for a solid emotional foundation.

It is your job to love this friend, accept these lessons and put what you have learned from them to use, in all of the other areas and relationships of your life.

Friendship is a Two-Way Street

As I read through the email, it occurred to me that friendship is most definitely a two-way street. Friends are not in your life to only satisfy your needs and to help you grow.

To be classified as a genuine friendship you also must share with your friend your love, support, encouragement and loyalty.

Only then will you fully appreciate and realise the full extent of genuine friendship, no matter whether the person is in your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime.

gratitude · happiness · inspiration · spiritual

Affirmations ~ “My Intentions for Feeling Good About Myself Today”

“Today I will direct my thoughts to dwell on the positive about me, and the good things I have done. I will withhold any self criticisms or negative self talk. I will not hold others opinions above my own.

Today I will refuse to participate in anything that takes away from my feeling good, or entertain thoughts of self doubt.

Today I will remember that as an ever loving, joyful soul, I am not my body, nor am I the things I have done, therefore I will not compare myself with others, or judge myself in any way.

Today I will not go against my inner voice of conscience nor put on a “woe-is-me” scene. I will cancel any unrealistic expectations of myself. I will willingly accept whatever is present.

Today I will do something good so that I have more good thoughts about myself tomorrow.

Today I will remember that I am enough, I am okay, alright just as I am, and I give myself permission to just be myself. I will make it okay to say “no”, even if it displeases others. I will forgive myself and forget what I have forgiven. I will always do the best I can in whatever circumstances I find myself in.

Today I will only see, think and hear good about myself. I will practise being patient, kind and gentle with myself. I will take every opportunity to laugh at myself, and refuse to take life too seriously. I will respect myself and treat myself with the V.I.P. status I am worthy of.

Today I choose to have positive and self supporting attitudes and to participate only in those expressions that add to my inner harmony and well being, and I especially prefer to be involved in those things that will have me feeling good and full of appreciation about myself at the end of this day….

And about all, it is my intention to be gentle and kindly towards myself…no matter what percentage of these goals I achieve.” ~ Author Unknown.

Australia · Mount Warning · spiritual

Can I Quote You on That?

The English language is quite amazing. Words, that being the use of words for different purposes, have always fascinated me.

My favourite subject at school, not surprisingly, was English. Where my exam results at high school were close to failure for mathematics, (who, I ask you, really needs to know Pythagoras, algebra, trigonometry or pi formulas?) my results for English were always at the top of the class.

Crosswords have always been a favourite also. Who knows what new words may be lurking around in crossword-land, waiting to be discovered?

And then, there are quotes. A  few cleverly strung together words can bring sunshine streaming into a dull day.  Better still; quotes themselves possess an amazingly accurate little knack of just popping up on the right day, at the right time.

A while ago my sister sent me a gift, a box of “Healing the Mind and Spirit” cards, by Brian Weiss. Our other sister had sent her the cards and she found them so accurate that she found some for me. The cards sit on my coffee table in my quiet room and I often refer to them.

This morning, the affirmation on my randomly chosen card from the deck was “I awaken each day to the beauty around me”. On the reverse side of the card, the message is “There is so much more to life than meets the eye. Love and beauty exist everywhere, at all levels. Open your spiritual eyes”.

By “coincidence”, this morning I drove my son to one of his friend’s houses so they could spend the day fishing in the river, just up the road from where he lives. Master twelve’s friend lives in a small village called Tumbulgum, situated on the Tweed River.

The aboriginal meaning of the word Tumbulgum is “meeting of the waters”, as it is the site where the Tweed River joins into the Rous River.

It is impossible for me to ever feel anything other than calm and happy when I take the ten minute drive to Tumbulgum. The Magic Mountain looks out over the river, as if guarding the waters.

It is a beautiful village…and yes, spiritual

Today, I have added a few words to my site, in the form of a quote from Abraham-Hicks. Have a look at the top of the column to the left; do you see it there, just above my subscription box? The quote will be updated daily.

It is my wish that the daily quotes from Abraham-Hicks will bring even more peace, happiness, love and beauty into your life, and open your spiritual eyes. 🙂

Australia · inspiration · knowledge · winter

The Week That Almost Never Was

Today is Friday, and as I pondered the events of the past week this morning, at first glance the week appeared to have been mostly uneventful.

Hmm…I’ve been busy all week ~ doing what?

Further scrutiny has revealed the evidence, the clues scattered around my desk ~ hand written notes of “points to remember”. The “Mystery of the Vanishing Week” has been solved.

Every day this week has been occupied with research on the internet and we all know how fast time can disappear, in an instant, when engrossed on the net!

This time spent deep in research has indeed been worthwhile as all the right people are appearing, just when I need them, to take me to the next level in my quest for knowledge.

In fact, my week could very well be summed up by the following Buddhist proverb:

“When the student is ready, the teacher will appear”.

This week’s events in my life are yet another example that when you know what you want in your life, have faith and it will come to you. 🙂

Further thought has also revealed to me other events, for which I am extremely grateful. The university course information, requested by my daughter, has arrived. A week ago she began questioning whether she would be capable of successfully completing her chosen course. The arrival of this information has given her a new spark of interest and I am expecting the right people will be appearing in her life, helping her to make decisions regarding the next steps for her, after finishing school in a few months time.

My gratitude is also directed firmly towards the weather! Mundane, perhaps to some, but not to me ~ oh, how I am relishing the cold air, bestowed by the Gods of the Chill this week on Australia!

This leads me into even more gratifying thoughts…during next week I will have both my youngest children on school holidays, so we will spend some time together, without the burden of being conscious of the time! No wake-up alarms to set, no lunches to be packed, no getting-to-the-bus-on-time, no homework and no “go to bed early, so you won’t miss the bus in the morning”.

For a change to the usual routine, we could visit a lighthouse. There are two lighthouses, located within less than an hour’s drive from home. While we are there, we can go walking along the beach. Winter on the beach is wonderful in my area, on a sunny day.

It is perfect weather also to take a drive towards the Magical Mountain, which I photographed and wrote about this week. All we will need is a clear day and the camera, and off we will go!

Next week is shaping up to be an enjoyable week, just as this week has been, in a different way. I would call this week “The New Knowledge Week”. It would be appropriate to call next week “Freedom from School” week or perhaps “Quietly Adventuring Week”.

Either way, I’ll keep you posted. 🙂

How has your week progressed? I’d love to hear about the gratifying events of your days.