Today’s selection is by Darren Kozelsky, a song I heard once called “Cool Grass”, a very calming song about coping with change and remembering to take a step back and just “lay down in the cool grass and let your mind fly”. Enjoy.
One of the best parts about Autumn is the crisp mornings when the sun begins to peak over top a mountain and flood the valley below with a huge rush of sunshine and warmth. The long shadows cast by trees, homes, and barns cut up the monotony of the mornings. All of this gives us an outstanding opportunity to don our favorite lightweight jackets and brew a mug of whatever coffee or tea we happen to reach for first this morning. Mornings such as this are great for simple reflection and relaxation, providing a great environment for introspection and calmness which is necessary for good mental health. The sad fact is, many people are too caught up in the hustle and bustle of every day life that this practice has all but fallen by the wayside.
Today my thoughts are simple, where I work the following signs are posted outside of every patient room:
I simply ask that we all do the same, not necessarily for a patient in a hospital but for ourselves, and on a regular basis for our own sanity.
“Each morning when I open my eyes I say to myself: I, not events, have the power to make me happy or unhappy today. I choose which it shall be. Yesterday is dead, tomorrow hasn’t arrived yet. I have just one day, today, and I’m going to be happy in it”
Make the most out of what you have, my friend, for we all have less time than we think. What I mean is not to enjoy your possessions, but to enjoy living and knowing the people that you have had the opportunity to know. So many people are so focused on their long term goals that they tend to forget that they are alive. I see them drudge through life because they’re after the proverbial light at the end of the tunnel. While I am not opposed to having goals and being ambitious, it should not get in the way of maximizing your life today, and just today. We should rise to the challenge of making each day great.
If the news makes you sad, turn it off. If music makes you happy, crank it up. If coffee or tea makes you happy, brew a pot. Smile at friends and strangers alike. Take the opportunities available to volunteer and give to make peoples lives just a little bit better, even if just for a moment. There is no set list for making the most out of your daily life. I could say exercise, eat right, and go outside, sure those all lead to long-term healthiness and happiness, but we should be doing them because we enjoy taking care of ourselves…right?
So my challenge to myself and my readers is to find the simple things that make you happy and embrace them, all the while blocking out all the negativity, and when people ask you how your day was, you can say that it was great without having to lie. Now I know that several of us deal with negativity all day and it is completely inevitable. What we need to do is remember why we chose that path of life. If you wake up and hate going to your job every day, take your off time to find a job that does make you happy, and find joy in the prospective adventure to come, and use that to make you happy today. I have always heard that we are hear to be happy and be useful, and if we are one or neither of those, we are just filler. But no worries, it is never too late to start. We can be happy by being useful, having the drive to do more, being compassionate, helpful, and skilled leads to happiness if we make it a labor of the heart.
Micky and the Motorcars “Never been out west”
“‘ I’ve never been out west’ She said,
it always seemed so far away.
Its just a direction I guess,
and I’m gettin too old for waiting around for someday”
Great song about fading dreams of adventure and feeling that time is passing us by without really living. Micky, the younger brother of Willy Braun of Reckless Kelly Fame, first came up on my radar at a show in Atlanta where his band opened for Cross Canadian Ragweed and I was instantly hooked with the fantastic song “Rock Springs to Cheyenne”. Please check out his music, I am confident you will not regret it.
“Without work, all life goes rotten. But when work is soulless, life stifles and dies.”
— Albert Camus
So, at the job that I recently held for a two month stint, I was surrounded by a bunch of people who constantly moaned about how painfully mind-numbing their current job was, and how they callers were horribly inept. I always thought to myself…”So why do you still work here?”, knowing that the answer is always because “There is nothing else.”
Well my friends, there is always something else, you just have to put on your Sunday best and go out and solicit yourself to these merchants who need someone to sell their product or do their service. This is not a passive effort, you need to sell yourself to the guy who has the money, and who is willing to give it to you to do the work.
You are skilled, we all have unique talents, the trouble is finding the right market to sell these skills and make yourself a more valuable target for that potential employer. First impressions are all they get, and sometimes all you are is a faint memory and words on a page. That one chance is all you have to make or break the sale, so it is in your best interest to really get out there and make yourself desirable in any way that you possibly can.
This often means
- Be clean shaven
- Polish your shoes
- Iron your clothes
- Tuck in your shirt, gentlemen, and not sloppily
- Take a pen and paper
- Shake hands firmly
- Be confident
- Look the employer in the eye
- Have a copy of your resume
- Know something about the company
- Pay attention to what they are saying
Ever tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better.-Samuekl Beckett
“Imagination will often carry us to worlds that never were. But without it we go nowhere. “
- Carl Sagan
I was talking to some coworkers and I realized that an astounding number of people nowadays do not want to have a hand in their children’s development. They plop them square in front of the mindless glowing box for endless hours of “educational entertainment” then stick them in a playpen with their bottle and play music so they go asleep, providing some much needed “free time” for mommy and daddy. This has been going on since there was television, and it really needs to stop. I understand that we live in a busy society in a struggling economy, but for goodness sake, raise your kids! Spend some time with them, or else you will see a sharp spike in the population of unimaginative, lazy teenagers and unhappy adults in the years to come.
If the creative instinct is not nourished than we lose it. I was reading by the time that I reached five years old. I have always had a passion for reading and using my imagination to visualize, problem solve, and even just to enjoy myself and get lost for a while. Imagination is the ability to think outside of the restrictions that are provided by authority or imposed upon us by personal restrictions. Without this we will struggle to progress or even develop our own thoughts. Reading us opens gives us the freedom to explore the imagination of other truly unique thinkers. Provides us a true window to that one persons creative mind and what it has the potential to create.
One way that I have found to cultivate and explore my own imagination is to realize its potential with a dream journal. I used to wake up and think about the crazy dreams that I had moments before I was blasted into reality by the blaring alarm produced by my alarm clock. The memory of that dream fleeted almost as quickly as the restful slumber that I had enjoyed just moments prior. I noticed that if i kept a notebook and a pen right by my bed then I could write the memory down just as quickly as possible before it disappeared from memory. Every excruciating detail that I could muster must be written down in its entirety lest it be forgotten. These journals allowed me to explore the memories with my conscious mind, my imagination was working overtime while I was asleep, and I had not realized it until I took the time to document it. Now once I could analyze and play these out in my waking mind, that left me free to take these dreams and further manipulate them.
Before I knew it, I was using my imagination again. Thinking, how would this be resolved if i could do anything? What would I do if i was in that situation? I can sit and speculate for hours, and it is fantastically freeing for me.