In contemplating how to be my best over the last few weeks, I have had time to reflect upon life in general, the important stuff. My opinions have developed a few items that I feel make or break you. The best part…they are choices made with free will and have meaning within any religious preference.
- YOUR life…if you wake up and look around and dislike what you see, know that you created it. Be it directly or without courage to express meaningful communication, your life is yours. Own it. No one forced it upon you, you were blessed with it and you were given all the tools to enhance life or tear it down. A hammer can build a home or deconstruct one nail at a time. So be committed to family, be committed to love, be committed to communication, be committed to patience, and be committed to doing things together. Only that commitment truly unveils the blessings that have been provided in your life.
- Family is EVERYTHING…no matter where you are in life, always choose family. Family has a unique bond that is forever, regardless of the hurt, no matter the personal journey, or struggle, family forgives and journeys together…always choose family. The moment that you decide to remove yourself from the family circle for advice, commiseration, secrets, trials and tribulation, you have begun the deterioration of the family bond and manifested alternative connections with threads. Threads are easily cut. Always choose family…they will never let you down.
- Time for LOVE…time is a precious commodity. In today’s society we have many demands: work, school, chores, social activities, philanthropies. If you do not take time for love soon nothing else will have meaning. Your life would be lived for the purpose of others. You will be searching for your purpose and through your search; you may overlook everything that has been seated before you. Take time for meaningful conversation. Take time to truly listen. Take time for hugs and holding hands. Take time for love.
- Do things TOGETHER…memories are created through the act of living. Memories are remarkable when they are shared. Doing things together is more than just making big memories, but it is also demonstrating your commitment to the three things above: owning your life, choosing family, and taking time for love. Some people need that together time more than others. What may seem like a boring chore of picking out paint colors or curtain shopping, or sitting and watching a movie or walking around the block when there is a to-do list a mile long actually means the world to the person you say yes to. Recognizing what your love, your family, and your personal needs are is vitally important. If you can’t recognize needs and respect them, you will find yourself searching and back to item 3. With recognition comes easy communication; communication is key.
- Speak softly…patience is not easy. Ever. We are born impatient. We live impatiently. We must remind ourselves to be patience and practice it daily. Part of patience is found in our speech. We must speak to those we love softly with kindness. My grandpa said something to me when I was growing up that I will never forget, “Speak to those you love so you never have to say you are sorry.” Think about that. In that one teaching statement, my grandpa said, think before you speak, be kind to those you love, and never be so angry that your voice or actions require an apology. Speak softly, kindly, with patience, always.
- Happiness is a choice…the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence when you aren’t watering or fertilizing your own lawn. It takes work to be happy. But if you live the first 5 items consistently, happiness will seamlessly come together in a tapestry of love you can take ownership of and pride in what has been created before your very eyes. Be in awe of your possibilities. Be humbled by your rips, worn spots, and rejoice in the ugly patches that keep it all together. Be in love of the life you live…it was chosen for you.