You’re Missing The Point….


Social-Media-Ruins-Minds


As human beings we have a unique ability to connect with each other in ways that can be more powerful than any other force. We’ve cured disease, fed the hungry, ended wars and accomplished the unimaginable. We hold the ability to connect with one another, to communicate and compromise. We should cherish each other and nurture our relationships. I always say that cab drivers are among my most favorite people. I have to say that I’ve never met a cab driver that has not completely intrigued me. Their job is to get human beings from one point to another and sometimes to talk to them in the process if they are lucky. Cab drivers know humanity in its most beautiful and ugly form and yet they almost always seem happy to see you. Sure, they have their bad days, after all they are human too, but mostly they just want to know your story. Maybe even more to the point, you want to tell your story. No matter who you are, when someone shows a genuine interest in you, that makes you feel good. You want to talk about the cutest ever thing your 2 year old did or how you’re worried you may lose your job. I think that is why Facebook has become so popular. It’s an opportunity every day for you to get up, get in your virtual cab and tell your story to all your cabby’s, who just happen to also be your friends and family in this case.

In some ways it’s a wonderful gift. We are able to keep up with friends and family near and far at just the click of a button. We get to share our stories every day right down to what we are eating for dinner that night. It’s truly feeding our basic need to be seen and heard, but maybe in the process we have turned into cannibals, using each other as prey. Somewhere along the line, we decided that because the cabby had put up the glass wall, in this case the internet, between us we could suddenly begin to judge him. We could suddenly start making giant signs on poster board and hanging them out the window of the cab with arrows pointing to him saying “I’m judging this person, and this is what I think of him”. To make matters worse, all of our friends who love and trust us are driving along the cab honking their horns and yelling “YES, JUDGE THAT PERSON I HAVE NEVER MET! JUDGE THAT SITUATIION I AM NOT A PART OF! I AM 100% BEHIND YOU BECAUSE YOU ARE MY FRIEND AND I AM ON BOARD NO MATTER WHAT I DO NOT KNOW ABOUT IT!” We would never do that in “real” life, but for some reason we feel it is OK to display this for all the world to see when we get to hide behind a screen. It’s not fair. It’s not right. It needs to stop.

I’m nowhere near perfect myself. I get frustrated and upset and I get pissed off and want to call people names. This is part of the gift and curse of emotions that we have been given. Learn to master your emotions and you will truly be enlightened. However, in the process of learning to control them, it doesn’t give you the right to let them control you. Before you decide it’s your right and emotional need to slander or stand on your Facebook soup box, you need only to ask yourself a few questions. 1.) Will this hurt someone? 2.) Is this helping someone? 3.) Am I merely looking for affirmation that I am right? I think the last one is the most important. Most of the time we are so caught up with being right, we forget to be loving. If you’re going to take a stand and attempt to rally people behind you. At least really them behind something that will project love, laughter and positive energy into the world. The point of Facebook was to get us connected, to each other, to the world, to ourselves. Don’t miss the point and use it to sabotage yourself or others. Step away from the computer, take a deep breath and move on. Be gentle with your cab driver, he is your ego. He is the one driving you to tell your story, to need to be heard, to need to be in control. Be gentle with your cab ego, ask him to slow down and take the long way home.

“Jumping to conclusions is like jumping in puddles, while it might be dramatically fun at the start, you just end up looking silly and dirty. Let’s leave that to the children.” – Tiffany Grace

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Accept The Fact You’re Already Dead


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You have already begun to die. At this moment you’re closer to death than you are to life. Each and every day you die a little more. Perhaps you should just accept the fact that you’re already dead. When sick patients receive the news that they are terminally ill with limited time to live, suddenly the world becomes their playground. Sometimes, they even have their wildest dreams granted. Do you think that is because they have accepted the fact that they are dying? I recently read somewhere that this reaction is a direct result of our ego taking a back seat for once in its life. Suddenly, keeping up with the Jones’ isn’t the priority. Driving the nicest car and wearing the latest fashions lose their luster and their meaning. Things like family and adventure, true soul searching take up the driver seat. Ironically, this is how we should be living the remainder of our lives on a daily basis.

This isn’t a new concept, right? I mean it’s been done before, psychologist have pondered this for years. I know, you’re sitting there saying to yourself “yea, but I have responsibilities and I can’t just abandon it all to live a care-free lifestyle”. So, I guess then you just accept the fact that you’re already dead?  Which means, that you are missing all the in between stuff. Just because you live life to the fullest, doesn’t mean you have to abandon “responsibility”. Everyone has a different version of happiness, I am simply suggesting that you find yours. Maybe happiness to you is being the CEO of a company or maybe it’s traveling the world with nothing you can call your own except your name. There is no right or wrong, but something must be done. If not, life becomes a series of “have to’s”. Obligations and responsibilities that we all have to do. Let me ask you this, if you’ve accepted the fact that you’re already dead and succumbed to life’s many demands, why have you chosen to create hell as your final resting place instead of heaven? Why have you chosen to be miserable instead of happy? This is a choice people. There are many people all around the world that have much less than we do that have grasped this reality and chosen to mold it into a heaven instead of a hell.

Any of you that have read my past posts or know me personally know that I am not an advocate for organized religion. I’m simply using the concepts of “heaven” and “hell” because they are easy for everyone to relate to. One of the reasons I have kept organized religion at bay in my life is because I strongly feel that guilt, repression and judgment are a huge part of most of those “houses of God”. I think that God, if he truly existed in the form that is being taught in our churches, would be appalled by the misinterpretation of “his word”. Anyway, that is another rant for another day. Today’s message, should you choose to take it for its grain of salt, is that you can choose your heaven and you can choose your hell here on earth. If you subscribe to the belief that everything is made up of the same energy then you’ll agree that really, they are all the same thing. You just have to decide which vibration you want to be a part of. Perhaps that’s why they call it a “higher” vibration or a “higher” IQ or a “higher” bank account. Really, we all just want to get high. You have the power to be at a higher vibration in life if you want to be. If everything feels like it’s falling apart and life has become too much, ask yourself why. I’d be willing to bet many of those reasons would relate to the expectations of society or others around you that you have put on yourself. We were not meant to carry the burdens of obligations to our religions or our peers or even our family. We were meant to create love and abundance for the world. If we all start focusing on that and stop focusing on guilt and the need to be outwardly “successful”, what do you think that world would look like? All those people you are trying so desperately to please, will start to reflect this back to you. You are your own worlds mirror.

So, consider this your notice of terminal illness. Because, honey, I hate to break it to you, but you’re not going to be the one that gets out alive. Take your dream trip, fall in love, follow all of your dreams. Put away the judgment of others and watch how fast others drop the judgments of you. More to the point, who cares? This is your life and you only get one shot in your current form. You can have all that you dream of, but you must first dare to dream. We were not put here in this form to live life just enough. We have been given the gift of free thought and each of us has the ability to use that tool to our advantage. Choose to believe that. Every limit that you have put on yourself, every insecurity and doubt is yours alone to own. Put your ego in the back seat and start steering your life based on how you want to feel and where you want to go. It’s a lifelong practice that will ebb and flow but you can start by taking the chances that you have the privilege to take.  If things start to look bleak, start appreciating those little things you take for granted. I mean, all the little things your take for granted! I love to travel and that is certainly a good way to remind all of us in the US how lucky and spoiled we are on a daily basis. You don’t have to feel bad about that, but I’d encourage you to be thankful for it!

We have not been programed mentally our entire lives to think this way. We have been programed to believe the we are not good enough and that what others think of us is very important. Therefore, our ego tends to take the driver’s seat more often than not. I always think of my ego as a whiney little boy barley able to touch to gas and the break. Peaking over the steering wheel, crashing into things, leaving me with bruises and scars. He’s up there saying “are were there yet? Why aren’t we there yet? Sallie got there yesterday and now we are behind”. Remember that your ego is your small child and they need to be disciplined. So, tell them “take a back seat kiddo, I’m taking back control”. You wouldn’t let your five year old drive you around all day would you? Then why are you allowing your ego to?

The only thing standing between you and your dreams is you.

Deep lessons Concealed


Whenever something negative happens to you, there is a deep lesson concealed within it – Echart Tolle 

I try not to focus on the negative aspects of my life. I try to take deep breaths mediate and send loving energy out to the world. I try to send loving energy to those that are not giving me the same respect. I’ve learned a few hard lessons over the past few months.

1.) When your mother told you to just “ignore it” when girls at school were being catty towards you and they would stop, she lied…. it didn’t work then. It still doesn’t work.

2.) You cannot jump into a friendship as an adult the same as you could as a child. You have to ease into the process and really get to know others true colors…. or you will find them out too late. 

3.) Some girls never grow out of catty, jealousy or revenge. You have to be the bigger person, even if you draw blood biting your tongue.

4.) Sometimes being the bigger person, get’s you into more hot water. While others are busy discussing you, and you’re refusing the discuss anything, I guess it’s human nature to listen to the one talking. Even if it’s ill intended. 

5.) Those that cannot make up their own minds, will allow others to make it up for them. Even with little or no evidence of the accusations. This is why our judicial system is so broken.

6.) If someone thinks something you’ve written, said or thought is about them…….they have a guilty conscience……………(A Good friend pointed this out to me the other day, wow so true!) 

7.) It’s OK To go on a totally negative rant on your otherwise ZEN blog when you’ve reached your wits end.

8.) It’s OK to decide someone isn’t a good fit in your life. You can still pick your friends even if you can’t pick their noses. Pick carefully or you might draw blood. 

9.)  I’ve always subscribed to quietly and gracefully exiting a relationship and I still will.

10.) When you’re getting married, you should be allowed to talk about it all the time. You should be able to complain about the 18 different dresses that were all wrong and every single annoying and ridiculous detail of it. Your friends should smile and nod and smile and nod until you have no more talking about wedding in you. You should be able to have little to nothing else to talk about until it’s all said and done.  It’s a right of passage as a good friend. We all have to do it and we should all secretly love it when we truly are a good friend. 

11.) Life is busy and complicated. All the time, it’s up to you to decide what is important to take up that time.

12.) At the end of the day you still have try not to focus on the negative aspects of your life. Try to take deep breaths mediate and send loving energy out to the world. Try to send loving energy to those that are not giving you the same respect. Learn a few hard lessons over the next couple of months.

Friends in a digital world….


My best friend and I would literally talk for 5 hours at a time when we moved away from each other. In fact, we still do! We’ve been friends since we were around 12 and sometimes I wonder if bonds like that are still possible. It seems that the older that you get and the more digital things become the weaker your bonds are to one another. Posting comments on photos and sharing inspirational quotes on Facebook seems to be the new friendship of our age. It’s totally acceptable to not even speak to your “friends” anymore. What with texting, facebook, twitter, youtube and even linkedin for professional friends, who needs talking?

I can’t help but feel like these new digital tools that were made to make it easier to interact with one another  have in fact made it that much harder to make meaningful relationships with each other. Have we all become so boring and socially awkward that we are incapable of having a phone conversation? Call me old school, but I think it’s imperative to have some kind of real life talking, seeing, feeling interaction with people. So much is taken out of context or miss-communicated in writing,  and yet we all take it as gold. Have you ever noticed your “tone” in your head as you read something? It’s actually quite a fun little game to play with yourself. As you’re reading your friends status updates, tweets or whatever listen to your inner voice and notice what kind of tone you’re using. You might think that something was quite catty when the person meant for it to be humorous. Your inner tone can really dictate the direction that you take something in writing. I’ve noticed this in my book club recently that some of the girls interpreted things totally different than I would have. It’s their inner tone shaping the way things were said by the characters, either because of their own experiences or maybe just their mood when they read it.

So, we basically form relationships with our own interpretations of someone else. We are not even giving them the chance to be authentic in an in person experience. On top of that, no one is really sharing anything real about their lives on social media. Your friend is not going to get on there and say “man I am so depressed, I cried all night and no one even knows what is going on”. Well, I guess they might, but you really wouldn’t get the full impact of what happened or how they were feeling. Your tone would take over and maybe you would think “what a baby, so annoying”. You wouldn’t hear the pain in their voice or see the desperation in their eyes. If you really stop to think about it, do you have any idea what is going on in your friends lives? Are you just basing your information on social media and your internal interpretation?

Social-Media-Ruins-Minds

Perhaps this is the new age of friendship. Maybe I am asking too much from people to build bonds with each other like that of my best friend and I.  Bonds that share deeply our feelings and experiences. Is it simply that she lived all of my life experiences with me since I was 12, or is it that we put a genuine effort into  our friendship in a way that most refuse to these days? Either way, I can’t help but feel sorry for society in general as we continue to pave the path of obsolete genuine interactions with one another. In the age of not enough time, we substitute real time and effort in our friendships with the occasional facebook interaction.

I hope that we have not become completely incapable of forming these bonds with one another.  I hope that our judgments of people based on our own interpretations of them through social media have not become our truth. I will try to check my tone at the door when facebooking, but I think that it’s a natural and very real auto pilot. I will try to separate my feelings from others perspectives, actions and situations and treat them just as that, theirs, as they really have nothing to do with me personally and all to do with that specific person and their own experiences, which are not for me to judge.  I will attempt to curb my own personal feelings towards someone else’ life. I will work towards forming friendships with people that are not limited to social media, texting and E-mail interactions and my interpretations of them based on that. People tend to “surprise the hell out of me” in the words of Vivian from Pretty Woman. If you take the time to truly get to know someone in all their faults and all their glory, I think they will surprise the hell out of you too.