How Much More Can A Person Take Quotes

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To my babies, Merry Christmas. I'm sorry if these letters have caught you both by surprise. There is just so much more I have to say. I know you thought I was done giving advice, but I couldn't leave without reiterating a few things in writing. You may not relate to these things now, but someday you will. I wasn't able to be around forever, but I hope that my words can be. -Don't stop making basagna. Basagna is good. Wait until a day when there is no bad news, and bake a damn basagna. -Find a balance between head and heart. Hopefully you've found that Lake, and you can help Kel sort it out when he gets to that point. -Push your boundaries, that's what they're there for. -I'm stealing this snippet from your favorite band, Lake. "Always remember there is nothing worth sharing, like the love that let us share our name." -Don't take life too seriously. Punch it in the face when it needs a good hit. Laugh at it. -And Laugh a lot. Never go a day without laughing at least once. -Never judge others. You both know good and well how unexpected events can change who a person is. Always keep that in mind. You never know what someone else is experiencing within their own life. -Question everything. Your love, your religion, your passions. If you don't have questions, you'll never find answers. -Be accepting. Of everything. People's differences, their similarities, their choices, their personalities. Sometimes it takes a variety to make a good collection. The same goes for people. -Choose your battles, but don't choose very many. -Keep an open mind; it's the only way new things can get in. -And last but not least, not the tiniest bit least. Never regret. Thank you both for giving me the best years of my life. Especially the last one. Love, Mom
Colleen Hoover (Slammed (Slammed, #1))
That's what being shy feels like. Like my skin is too thin, the light too bright. Like the best place I could possibly be is in a tunnel far under the cool, dark earth. Someone asks me a question and I stare at them, empty-faced, my brain jammed up with how hard I'm trying to find something interesting to say. And in the end, all I can do is nod or shrug, because the light of their eyes looking at me, waiting for me, is just too much to take. And then it's over and there's one more person in the world who thinks I'm a complete and total waste of space. The worst thing is the stupid hopefulness. Every new party, every new bunch of people, and I start thinking that maybe this is my chance. That I'm going to be normal this time. A new leaf. A fresh start. But then I find myself at the party, thinking, Oh, yeah. This again. So I stand on the edge of things, crossing my fingers, praying nobody will try to look me in the eye. And the good thing is, they usually don't.
Carol Rifka Brunt (Tell the Wolves I'm Home)
You act young," he said, "because you are young. But you know things, Roza. Things people older than you don't even know. That day...." I knew instantly which day he referred to. The one up against the wall. "You were right, about how I fight to stay in control. No one else has ever figured that out- and it scared me. You scare me." "Why? Don't you want anyone to know?" He shrugged. "Whether they know that fact or not doesn't matter. What matters is that someone- that you- know me that well. When a person can see into your soul, it's hard. It forces you to be open. Vulnerable. It's much easier being with someone who's just more of a casual friend." "Like Tasha." "Tasha Ozera is an amazing woman. She's beautiful and she's brave. But she doesn't-" "She doesn't get you," I finished. He nodded. "I knew that. But I still wanted the relationship. I knew it would be easy and that she could take me away from you. I thought she could make me forget you." I'd thought the same thing about Mason. "But she couldn't." "Yes. And, so.....that's a problem.
Richelle Mead (Frostbite (Vampire Academy, #2))
All depression has its roots in self-pity, and all self-pity is rooted in people taking themselves too seriously.” At the time Switters had disputed her assertion. Even at seventeen, he was aware that depression could have chemical causes. “The key word here is roots,” Maestra had countered. “The roots of depression. For most people, self-awareness and self-pity blossom simultaneously in early adolescence. It's about that time that we start viewing the world as something other than a whoop-de-doo playground, we start to experience personally how threatening it can be, how cruel and unjust. At the very moment when we become, for the first time, both introspective and socially conscientious, we receive the bad news that the world, by and large, doesn't give a rat's ass. Even an old tomato like me can recall how painful, scary, and disillusioning that realization was. So, there's a tendency, then, to slip into rage and self-pity, which if indulged, can fester into bouts of depression.” “Yeah but Maestra—” “Don't interrupt. Now, unless someone stronger and wiser—a friend, a parent, a novelist, filmmaker, teacher, or musician—can josh us out of it, can elevate us and show us how petty and pompous and monumentally useless it is to take ourselves so seriously, then depression can become a habit, which, in tern, can produce a neurological imprint. Are you with me? Gradually, our brain chemistry becomes conditioned to react to negative stimuli in a particular, predictable way. One thing'll go wrong and it'll automatically switch on its blender and mix us that black cocktail, the ol’ doomsday daiquiri, and before we know it, we’re soused to the gills from the inside out. Once depression has become electrochemically integrated, it can be extremely difficult to philosophically or psychologically override it; by then it's playing by physical rules, a whole different ball game. That's why, Switters my dearest, every time you've shown signs of feeling sorry for yourself, I've played my blues records really loud or read to you from The Horse’s Mouth. And that’s why when you’ve exhibited the slightest tendency toward self-importance, I’ve reminded you that you and me— you and I: excuse me—may be every bit as important as the President or the pope or the biggest prime-time icon in Hollywood, but none of us is much more than a pimple on the ass-end of creation, so let’s not get carried away with ourselves. Preventive medicine, boy. It’s preventive medicine.” “But what about self-esteem?” “Heh! Self-esteem is for sissies. Accept that you’re a pimple and try to keep a lively sense of humor about it. That way lies grace—and maybe even glory.
Tom Robbins (Fierce Invalids Home from Hot Climates)
Closing The Cycle One always has to know when a stage comes to an end. If we insist on staying longer than the necessary time, we lose the happiness and the meaning of the other stages we have to go through. Closing cycles, shutting doors, ending chapters - whatever name we give it, what matters is to leave in the past the moments of life that have finished. Did you lose your job? Has a loving relationship come to an end? Did you leave your parents' house? Gone to live abroad? Has a long-lasting friendship ended all of a sudden? You can spend a long time wondering why this has happened. You can tell yourself you won't take another step until you find out why certain things that were so important and so solid in your life have turned into dust, just like that. But such an attitude will be awfully stressing for everyone involved: your parents, your husband or wife, your friends, your children, your sister, everyone will be finishing chapters, turning over new leaves, getting on with life, and they will all feel bad seeing you at a standstill. None of us can be in the present and the past at the same time, not even when we try to understand the things that happen to us. What has passed will not return: we cannot for ever be children, late adolescents, sons that feel guilt or rancor towards our parents, lovers who day and night relive an affair with someone who has gone away and has not the least intention of coming back. Things pass, and the best we can do is to let them really go away. That is why it is so important (however painful it may be!) to destroy souvenirs, move, give lots of things away to orphanages, sell or donate the books you have at home. Everything in this visible world is a manifestation of the invisible world, of what is going on in our hearts - and getting rid of certain memories also means making some room for other memories to take their place. Let things go. Release them. Detach yourself from them. Nobody plays this life with marked cards, so sometimes we win and sometimes we lose. Do not expect anything in return, do not expect your efforts to be appreciated, your genius to be discovered, your love to be understood. Stop turning on your emotional television to watch the same program over and over again, the one that shows how much you suffered from a certain loss: that is only poisoning you, nothing else. Nothing is more dangerous than not accepting love relationships that are broken off, work that is promised but there is no starting date, decisions that are always put off waiting for the "ideal moment." Before a new chapter is begun, the old one has to be finished: tell yourself that what has passed will never come back. Remember that there was a time when you could live without that thing or that person - nothing is irreplaceable, a habit is not a need. This may sound so obvious, it may even be difficult, but it is very important. Closing cycles. Not because of pride, incapacity or arrogance, but simply because that no longer fits your life. Shut the door, change the record, clean the house, shake off the dust. Stop being who you were, and change into who you are.
Paulo Coelho
Before I got here, I thought for a long time that the way out of the labyrinth was to pretend that it did not exist, to build a small, self-sufficient world in a back corner of, the endless maze and to pretend that I was not lost, but home. But that only led to a lonely life accompanied only by the last words of the looking for a Great Perhaps, for real friends, and a more-than minor life. And then i screwed up and the Colonel screwed up and Takumi screwed up and she slipped through our fingers. And there's no sugar-coating it: She deserved better friends. When she fucked up, all those years ago, just a little girl terrified. into paralysis, she collapsed into the enigma of herself. And I could have done that, but I saw where it led for her. So I still believe in the Great Perhaps, and I can believe in it spite of having lost her. Beacause I will forget her, yes. That which came together will fall apart imperceptibly slowly, and I will forget, but she will forgive my forgetting, just as I forgive her for forgetting me and the Colonel and everyone but herself and her mom in those last moments she spent as a person. I know that she forgives me for being dumb and sacred and doing the dumb and scared thing. I know she forgives me, just as her mother forgives her. And here's how I know: I thought at first she was just dead. Just darkness. Just a body being eaten by bugs. I thought about her a lot like that, as something's meal. What was her-green eyes, half a smirk, the soft curves of her legs-would soon be nothing, just the bones I never saw. I thought about the slow process of becoming bone and then fossil and then coal that will, in millions of years, be mined by humans of the future, and how they would their homes with her, and then she would be smoke billowing out of a smokestack, coating the atmosphere. I still think that, sometimes. I still think that, sometimes, think that maybe "the afterlife" is just something we made up to ease the pain of loss, to make our time in the labyrinth bearable. Maybe she was just a matter, and matter gets recycled. But ultimately I do not believe that she was only matter. The rest of her must be recycled, too. I believe now that we are greater than the sum of our parts. If you take Alaska's genetic code and you add her life experiences and the relationships she had with people, and then you take the size and shape of her body, you do not get her. There is something else entirety. There is a part of her knowable parts. And that parts has to go somewhere, because it cannot be destroyed. Although no one will ever accuse me of being much of a science student, One thing I learned from science classes is that energy is never created and never destroyed. And if Alaska took her own life, that is the hope I wish I could have given her. Forgetting her mother, failing her mother and her friends and herself -those are awful things, but she did not need to fold into herself and self-destruct. Those awful things are survivable because we are as indestructible as we believe ourselves to be. When adults say "Teenagers think they are invincible" with that sly, stupid smile on their faces, they don't know how right they are. We need never be hopeless, because we can never be irreparably broken. We think that we are invincible because we are. We cannot be born, and we cannot die. Like all energy, we can only change shapes and sizes manifestations. They forget that when they get old. They get scared of losing and failing. But that part of us greater than the sum of our parts cannot begin and cannot end, and so it cannot fail. So I know she forgives me, just as I forgive her. Thomas Eidson's last words were: "It's very beautiful over there." I don't know where there is, but I believe it's somewhere, and I hope it's beautiful.
John Green (Looking for Alaska)
Sometimes you’re 23 and standing in the kitchen of your house making breakfast and brewing coffee and listening to music that for some reason is really getting to your heart. You’re just standing there thinking about going to work and picking up your dry cleaning. And also more exciting things like books you’re reading and trips you plan on taking and relationships that are springing into existence. Or fading from your memory, which is far less exciting. And suddenly you just don’t feel at home in your skin or in your house and you just want home but “Mom’s” probably wouldn’t feel like home anymore either. There used to be the comfort of a number in your phone and ears that listened every day and arms that were never for anyone else. But just to calm you down when you started feeling trapped in a five-minute period where nostalgia is too much and thoughts of this person you are feel foreign. When you realize that you’ll never be this young again but this is the first time you’ve ever been this old. When you can’t remember how you got from sixteen to here and all the same feel like sixteen is just as much of a stranger to you now. The song is over. The coffee’s done. You’re going to breath in and out. You’re going to be fine in about five minutes.
Kalyn Roseanne Livernois (High Wire Darlings)
If, by the virtue of charity or the circumstance of desperation, you ever chance to spend a little time around a Substance-recovery halfway facility like Enfield MA’s state-funded Ennet House, you will acquire many exotic new facts… That certain persons simply will not like you no matter what you do. That sleeping can be a form of emotional escape and can with sustained effort be abused. That purposeful sleep-deprivation can also be an abusable escape. That you do not have to like a person in order to learn from him/her/it. That loneliness is not a function of solitude. That logical validity is not a guarantee of truth. That it takes effort to pay attention to any one stimulus for more than a few seconds. That boring activities become, perversely, much less boring if you concentrate intently on them. That if enough people in a silent room are drinking coffee it is possible to make out the sound of steam coming off the coffee. That sometimes human beings have to just sit in one place and, like, hurt. That you will become way less concerned with what other people think of you when you realize how seldom they do. That there is such a thing as raw, unalloyed, agendaless kindness. That it is possible to fall asleep during an anxiety attack. That concentrating intently on anything is very hard work. That 99% of compulsive thinkers’ thinking is about themselves; that 99% of this self-directed thinking consists of imagining and then getting ready for things that are going to happen to them; and then, weirdly, that if they stop to think about it, that 100% of the things they spend 99% of their time and energy imagining and trying to prepare for all the contingencies and consequences of are never good. In short that 99% of the head’s thinking activity consists of trying to scare the everliving shit out of itself. That it is possible to make rather tasty poached eggs in a microwave oven. That some people’s moms never taught them to cover up or turn away when they sneeze. That the people to be the most frightened of are the people who are the most frightened. That it takes great personal courage to let yourself appear weak. That no single, individual moment is in and of itself unendurable. That other people can often see things about you that you yourself cannot see, even if those people are stupid. That having a lot of money does not immunize people from suffering or fear. That trying to dance sober is a whole different kettle of fish. That different people have radically different ideas of basic personal hygiene. That, perversely, it is often more fun to want something than to have it. That if you do something nice for somebody in secret, anonymously, without letting the person you did it for know it was you or anybody else know what it was you did or in any way or form trying to get credit for it, it’s almost its own form of intoxicating buzz. That anonymous generosity, too, can be abused. That it is permissible to want. That everybody is identical in their unspoken belief that way deep down they are different from everyone else. That this isn’t necessarily perverse. That there might not be angels, but there are people who might as well be angels.
David Foster Wallace (Infinite Jest)
This is me knowing that I have to let you go. That no matter how much I love you or how hard we work at this or how badly we both want each other to be happy, we are never going to be the right partners for each other. This is my acceptance that the best things are never straightforward and that I want you to take whatever crooked, twisted path you need to take if it will lead you towards your dreams. This is me knowing that I have to do what’s right. That sometimes the best thing you can do for someone you love is to let them go – to do more, feel more, be more than the person they ever could ever have become by your side.
Heidi Priebe (This Is Me Letting You Go)
How come you’re in such a good mood? You couldn't have gotten much more sleep than I did last night. Are you a morning person?” I ask in mock horror.“A mornin’ person, well maybe, but let’s just say I got to experience the nicest parts of hell last night,” he says quietly,taking the shirt I offer him. As he rises out of thebed, I can’t help looking over his perfect abdomen and chest before he shrugs into his shirt.“I’m sorry, the nicest parts of hell? What does that mean?” I ask.“Red, yer not a guy, so there’s no point explainin’,
Amy A. Bartol (Inescapable (The Premonition, #1))
It’s taboo to admit that you’re lonely. You can make jokes about it, of course. You can tell people that you spend most of your time with Netflix or that you haven’t left the house today and you might not even go outside tomorrow. Ha ha, funny. But rarely do you ever tell people about the true depths of your loneliness, about how you feel more and more alienated from your friends each passing day and you’re not sure how to fix it. It seems like everyone is just better at living than you are. A part of you knew this was going to happen. Growing up, you just had this feeling that you wouldn’t transition well to adult life, that you’d fall right through the cracks. And look at you now. La di da, it’s happening. Your mother, your father, your grandparents: they all look at you like you’re some prized jewel and they tell you over and over again just how lucky you are to be young and have your whole life ahead of you. “Getting old ain’t for sissies,” your father tells you wearily. You wish they’d stop saying these things to you because all it does is fill you with guilt and panic. All it does is remind you of how much you’re not taking advantage of your youth. You want to kiss all kinds of different people, you want to wake up in a stranger’s bed maybe once or twice just to see if it feels good to feel nothing, you want to have a group of friends that feels like a tribe, a bonafide family. You want to go from one place to the next constantly and have your weekends feel like one long epic day. You want to dance to stupid music in your stupid room and have a nice job that doesn’t get in the way of living your life too much. You want to be less scared, less anxious, and more willing. Because if you’re closed off now, you can only imagine what you’ll be like later. Every day you vow to change some aspect of your life and every day you fail. At this point, you’re starting to question your own power as a human being. As of right now, your fears have you beat. They’re the ones that are holding your twenties hostage. Stop thinking that everyone is having more sex than you, that everyone has more friends than you, that everyone out is having more fun than you. Not because it’s not true (it might be!) but because that kind of thinking leaves you frozen. You’ve already spent enough time feeling like you’re stuck, like you’re watching your life fall through you like a fast dissolve and you’re unable to hold on to anything. I don’t know if you ever get better. I don’t know if a person can just wake up one day and decide to be an active participant in their life. I’d like to think so. I’d like to think that people get better each and every day but that’s not really true. People get worse and it’s their stories that end up getting forgotten because we can’t stand an unhappy ending. The sick have to get better. Our normalcy depends upon it. You have to value yourself. You have to want great things for your life. This sort of shit doesn’t happen overnight but it can and will happen if you want it. Do you want it bad enough? Does the fear of being filled with regret in your thirties trump your fear of living today? We shall see.
Ryan O'Connell
I think what's happened, Marlee, is that you've realized the world isn't an addition problem. We tell kids that sometimes. We pretend the world is straightforward, simple, easy. You do this, you get that. You're a good person and try your best, and nothing bad will happen. But the truth is, the world is much more like an algebraic equation. With variables and changes, complicated and messy. Sometimes there's more than one answer, and sometimes there is none. Sometimes we don't even know how to solve the problem. But usually, if we take things step by step, we can figure things out. You just have to remember to factor the equation, break it down into smaller parts.
Kristin Levine (The Lions of Little Rock)
I want to talk about creating your life. There’s a quote I love, from the poet Mary Oliver, that goes: Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life? I so clearly remember what it was like, being young and always in the grip of some big fat daydream. I wanted to be a writer always, but more than that, I wanted to have an extraordinary life. I’m sure I dreamed it a million different ways, and that plenty of them were ridiculous, but I think the daydreams were training for writing, and I also think they spurred me to pursue my dreams for real. Daydreaming, however awesome it is, is passive. It happens in your head. Learning to make dreams real is another matter, and I think it should be the work of your life. Everyone’s life, whatever their dream (unless their dream is to be an axe murderer or something.) It took me a while to finish a book. Too long. And you know, it doesn’t matter how good a writer you are unless you finish what you start! I think this is the hardest part for most people who want to write. I was in my mid-30s before I figured it out. The brain plays tricks. You can be convinced you’re following your dream, or that you’re going to start tomorrow, and years can pass like that. Years. The thing is, there will be pressure to adjust your expectations, always shrinking them, shrinking, shrinking, until they fit in your pocket like a folded slip of paper, and you know what happens to folded slips of paper in your pocket. They go through the wash and get ruined. Don’t ever put your dream in your pocket. If you have to put it somewhere, get one of those holsters for your belt, like my dad has for his phone, so you can whip it out at any moment. Hello there, dream. Also, don’t be realistic. The word “realistic” is poison. Who decides? And “backup plan” is code for, “Give up on your dreams,” and everyone I know who put any energy into a backup plan is now living that backup plan instead of their dream. Put all your energy into your dream. That’s the only way it will ever become real. The world at large has this attitude, “What makes you so special that you think you deserve an extraordinary life?” Personally, I think the passion for an extraordinary life, and the courage to pursue it, is what makes us special. And I don’t even think of it as an “extraordinary life” anymore so much as simple happiness. It’s rarer than it should be, and I believe it comes from creating a life that fits you perfectly, not taking what’s already there, but making your own from scratch. You can let life happen to you, or you can happen to life. It’s harder, but so much better.
Laini Taylor
In societies reduced to blur and glut, terror is the only meaningful act. There's too much everything, more things and messages and meanings that we can use in ten thousand lifetimes. Inertia-hysteria. Is history possible? Is anyone serious? Who do we take serious? Only the lethal believer, the person who kills and dies for faith. Everything else is absorbed. The artist is absorbed, the madman in the street is absorbed an processed and incorporated. Give him a dollar, put him in a TV commercial. Only the terrorists stand outside. The culture hasn't figured out how to assimilate him. It's confusing when they kill the innocent. But this is precisely the language of being noticed, the only language the West understands. The way they determine how we see them. The way they dominate the rush of endless streaming images.
Don DeLillo (Mao II)
This poem is very long So long, in fact, that your attention span May be stretched to its very limits But that’s okay It’s what’s so special about poetry See, poetry takes time We live in a time Call it our culture or society It doesn’t matter to me cause neither one rhymes A time where most people don’t want to listen Our throats wait like matchsticks waiting to catch fire Waiting until we can speak No patience to listen But this poem is long It’s so long, in fact, that during the time of this poem You could’ve done any number of other wonderful things You could’ve called your father Call your father You could be writing a postcard right now Write a postcard When was the last time you wrote a postcard? You could be outside You’re probably not too far away from a sunrise or a sunset Watch the sun rise Maybe you could’ve written your own poem A better poem You could have played a tune or sung a song You could have met your neighbor And memorized their name Memorize the name of your neighbor You could’ve drawn a picture (Or, at least, colored one in) You could’ve started a book Or finished a prayer You could’ve talked to God Pray When was the last time you prayed? Really prayed? This is a long poem So long, in fact, that you’ve already spent a minute with it When was the last time you hugged a friend for a minute? Or told them that you love them? Tell your friends you love them …no, I mean it, tell them Say, I love you Say, you make life worth living Because that, is what friends do Of all of the wonderful things that you could’ve done During this very, very long poem You could have connected Maybe you are connecting Maybe we’re connecting See, I believe that the only things that really matter In the grand scheme of life are God and people And if people are made in the image of God Then when you spend your time with people It’s never wasted And in this very long poem I’m trying to let a poem do what a poem does: Make things simpler We don’t need poems to make things more complicated We have each other for that We need poems to remind ourselves of the things that really matter To take time A long time To be alive for the sake of someone else for a single moment Or for many moments Cause we need each other To hold the hands of a broken person All you have to do is meet a person Shake their hand Look in their eyes They are you We are all broken together But these shattered pieces of our existence don’t have to be a mess We just have to care enough to hold our tongues sometimes To sit and listen to a very long poem A story of a life The joy of a friend and the grief of friend To hold and be held And be quiet So, pray Write a postcard Call your parents and forgive them and then thank them Turn off the TV Create art as best as you can Share as much as possible, especially money Tell someone about a very long poem you once heard And how afterward it brought you to them
Colleen Hoover (This Girl (Slammed, #3))
When we retire at night, we constructively review our day. Were we resentful, selfish, dishonest or afraid? Do we owe an apology? Have we kept something to ourselves which should be discussed with another person at once? Were we kind and loving toward all? What could we have done better? Were we thinking of ourselves most of the time? Or were we thinking of what we could do for others, of what we could pack into the stream of life? But we must be careful not to drift into worry, remorse or morbid reflection, for that would diminish our usefulness to others. After making our review we ask God’s forgiveness and inquire what corrective measures should be taken. On awakening let us think about the twenty-four hours ahead. We consider our plans for the day. Before we begin, we ask God to direct our thinking, especially asking that it be divorced from self-pity, dishonest or self-seeking motives. Under these conditions we can employ our mental faculties with assurance, for after all God gave us brains to use. Our thought-life will be placed on a much higher plane when our thinking is cleared of wrong motives. In thinking about our day we may face indecision. We may not be able to determine which course to take. Here we ask God for inspiration, an intuitive thought or a decision. We relax and take it easy. We don’t struggle. We are often surprised how the right answers come after we have tried this for a while. What used to be the hunch or the occasional inspiration gradually becomes a working part of the mind. Being still inexperienced and having just made conscious contact with God, it is not probable that we are going to be inspired at all times. We might pay for this presumption in all sorts of absurd actions and ideas. Nevertheless, we find that our thinking will, as time passes, be more and more on the plane of inspiration. We come to rely upon it. We usually conclude the period of meditation with a prayer that we be shown all through the day what our next step is to be, that we be given whatever we need to take care of such problems. We ask especially for freedom from self-will, and are careful to make no request for ourselves only. We may ask for ourselves, however, if others will be helped. We are careful never to pray for our own selfish ends. Many of us have wasted a lot of time doing that and it doesn’t work. You can easily see why.
Bill Wilson
When the web started, I used to get really grumpy with people because they put my poems up. They put my stories up. They put my stuff up on the web. I had this belief, which was completely erroneous, that if people put your stuff up on the web and you didn’t tell them to take it down, you would lose your copyright, which actually, is simply not true. And I also got very grumpy because I felt like they were pirating my stuff, that it was bad. And then I started to notice that two things seemed much more significant. One of which was… places where I was being pirated, particularly Russia where people were translating my stuff into Russian and spreading around into the world, I was selling more and more books. People were discovering me through being pirated. Then they were going out and buying the real books, and when a new book would come out in Russia, it would sell more and more copies. I thought this was fascinating, and I tried a few experiments. Some of them are quite hard, you know, persuading my publisher for example to take one of my books and put it out for free. We took “American Gods,” a book that was still selling and selling very well, and for a month they put it up completely free on their website. You could read it and you could download it. What happened was sales of my books, through independent bookstores, because that’s all we were measuring it through, went up the following month three hundred percent. I started to realize that actually, you’re not losing books. You’re not losing sales by having stuff out there. When I give a big talk now on these kinds of subjects and people say, “Well, what about the sales that I’m losing through having stuff copied, through having stuff floating out there?” I started asking audiences to just raise their hands for one question. Which is, I’d say, “Okay, do you have a favorite author?” They’d say, “Yes.” and I’d say, “Good. What I want is for everybody who discovered their favorite author by being lent a book, put up your hands.” And then, “Anybody who discovered your favorite author by walking into a bookstore and buying a book raise your hands.” And it’s probably about five, ten percent of the people who actually discovered an author who’s their favorite author, who is the person who they buy everything of. They buy the hardbacks and they treasure the fact that they got this author. Very few of them bought the book. They were lent it. They were given it. They did not pay for it, and that’s how they found their favorite author. And I thought, “You know, that’s really all this is. It’s people lending books. And you can’t look on that as a loss of sale. It’s not a lost sale, nobody who would have bought your book is not buying it because they can find it for free.” What you’re actually doing is advertising. You’re reaching more people, you’re raising awareness. Understanding that gave me a whole new idea of the shape of copyright and of what the web was doing. Because the biggest thing the web is doing is allowing people to hear things. Allowing people to read things. Allowing people to see things that they would never have otherwise seen. And I think, basically, that’s an incredibly good thing.
Neil Gaiman
You will not remember much from school. School is designed to teach you how to respond and listen to authority figures in the event of an emergency. Like if there's a bomb in a mall or a fire in an office. It can, apparently, take you more than a decade to learn this. These are not the best days of your life. They are still ahead of you. You will fall in love and have your heart broken in many different, new and interesting ways in college or university (if you go) and you will actually learn things, as at this point, people will believe you have a good chance of obeying authority and surviving, in the event of an emergency. If, in your chosen career path, there are award shows that give out more than ten awards in one night or you have to pay someone to actually take the award home to put on your mantlepiece, then those awards are more than likely designed to make young people in their 20's work very late, for free, for other people. Those people will do their best to convince you that they have value. They don't. Only the things you do have real, lasting value, not the things you get for the things you do. You will, at some point, realise that no trophy loves you as much as you love it, that it cannot pay your bills (even if it increases your salary slightly) and that it won't hold your hand tightly as you say your last words on your deathbed. Only people who love you can do that. If you make art to feel better, make sure it eventually makes you feel better. If it doesn't, stop making it. You will love someone differently, as time passes. If you always expect to feel the same kind of love you felt when you first met someone, you will always be looking for new people to love. Love doesn't fade. It just changes as it grows. It would be boring if it didn't. There is no truly "right" way of writing, painting, being or thinking, only things which have happened before. People who tell you differently are assholes, petrified of change, who should be violently ignored. No philosophy, mantra or piece of advice will hold true for every conceivable situation. "The early bird catches the worm" does not apply to minefields. Perfection only exists in poetry and movies, everyone fights occasionally and no sane person is ever completely sure of anything. Nothing is wrong with any of this. Wisdom does not come from age, wisdom comes from doing things. Be very, very careful of people who call themselves wise, artists, poets or gurus. If you eat well, exercise often and drink enough water, you have a good chance of living a long and happy life. The only time you can really be happy, is right now. There is no other moment that exists that is more important than this one. Do not sacrifice this moment in the hopes of a better one. It is easy to remember all these things when they are being said, it is much harder to remember them when you are stuck in traffic or lying in bed worrying about the next day. If you want to move people, simply tell them the truth. Today, it is rarer than it's ever been. (People will write things like this on posters (some of the words will be bigger than others) or speak them softly over music as art (pause for effect). The reason this happens is because as a society, we need to self-medicate against apathy and the slow, gradual death that can happen to anyone, should they confuse life with actually living.)
You make concessions when you're married a long time that you don't believe you'll ever make when you're beginning. You say to yourself when you're young, oh, I wouldn't tolerate this or that or the other thing, you say love is the most important thing in the world and there's only one kind of love and it makes you feel different than you feel the rest of the time, like you're all lit up. But time goes by and you've slept together a thousand nights and smelled like spit-up when babies are sick and seen your body droop and get soft. And some nights you say to yourself, it's not enough, I won't put up with another minute. And then the next morning you wake up and the kitchen smells like coffee and the children have their hair all brushed and the birds are eating out of the feeder and you look at your husband and he's not the person you used to think he was but he's your life. The house and the children and so much more of what you do is built around him and your life, too, your history. If you take him out it's like cutting his face out of all the pictures, there's a big hole and it's ugly. It would ruin everything. It's more than love, it's more important than love... It's hard. And it's hard to understand unless you're in it. And it's hard for you to understand now because of where you are and what you're feeling. But I wanted to say it...because I won't be able to say it when I need to, when it's one of those nights and you're locking the front door because of foolishness about romance, about how things are supposed to be. You can be hard, and you can be judgmental, and with those two things alone you can make a mess of your life the likes of which you won't believe. It's so much easier...the being happy. It's so much easier, to learn to love what you have instead of yearning always for what you're missing, or what you imagine you're missing. It's so much more peaceful.
Anna Quindlen (One True Thing)
Once you are in a relationship you start taking each other for granted—that’s what destroys all love affairs. The woman thinks she knows the man, the man thinks he knows the woman. Nobody knows either! It is impossible to know the other, the other remains a mystery. And to take the other for granted is insulting, disrespectful. To think that you know your wife is very, very ungrateful. How can you know the woman? How can you know the man? They are processes, they are not things. The woman that you knew yesterday is not there today. So much water has gone down the Ganges; she is somebody else, totally different. Relate again, start again, don’t take it for granted. And the man that you slept with last night, look at his face again in the morning. He is no more the same person, so much has changed. So much, incalculably much has changed. That is the difference between a thing and a person. The furniture in the room is the same, but the man and the woman, they are no more the same. Explore again, start again. That’s what I mean by relating. Relating means you are always starting, you are continuously trying to become acquainted. Again and again, you are introducing yourself to each other. You are trying to see the many facets of the other’s personality. You are trying to penetrate deeper and deeper into his realm of inner feelings, into the deep recesses of his being. You are trying to unravel a mystery that cannot be unraveled. That is the joy of love: the exploration of consciousness. And
Osho (Love, Freedom, Aloneness: The Koan of Relationships)
Only people who've been discriminated against can really know how much it hurts. Each person feels the pain in his own way, each has his own scars. So I think I'm as concerned about fairness and justice as anybody. But what disgusts me even more are people who have no imagination. The kind T. S. Eliot calls hollow men. People who fill up that lack of imagination with heartless bits of straw, not even aware of what they're doing. Callous people who throw a lot of empty words at you, trying to force you to do what you don't want to. Like that lovely pair we just met.” He sighs and twirls the long slender pencil in his hand. “Gays, lesbians, straights, feminists, fascist pigs, communists, Hare Krishnas-- none of them bother me. I don't care what banner they raise. But what I can't stand are hollow people. When I'm with them I just can't bear it, and wind up saying things I shouldn't. With those women--I should've just let it slide, or else called Miss Saeki and let her handle it. She would have given them a smile and smoothed things over. But I just can't do “do that. I say things I shouldn't, do things I shouldn't do. I can't control myself. That's one of my weak points. Do you know why that's a weak point of mine?” “'Cause if you take every single person who lacks much imagination seriously, there's no end to it,” I say.
Haruki Murakami (Kafka on the Shore)
On the first day of November last year, sacred to many religious calendars but especially the Celtic, I went for a walk among bare oaks and birch. Nothing much was going on. Scarlet sumac had passed and the bees were dead. The pond had slicked overnight into that shiny and deceptive glaze of delusion, first ice. It made me remember sakes and conjure a vision of myself skimming backward on one foot, the other extended; the arms become wings. Minnesota girls know that this is not a difficult maneuver if one's limber and practices even a little after school before the boys claim the rink for hockey. I think I can still do it - one thinks many foolish things when November's bright sun skips over the entrancing first freeze. A flock of sparrows reels through the air looking more like a flying net than seventy conscious birds, a black veil thrown on the wind. When one sparrow dodges, the whole net swerves, dips: one mind. Am I part of anything like that? Maybe not. The last few years of my life have been characterized by stripping away, one by one, loves and communities that sustain the soul. A young colleague, new to my English department, recently asked me who I hang around with at school. "Nobody," I had to say, feeling briefly ashamed. This solitude is one of the surprises of middle age, especially if one's youth has been rich in love and friendship and children. If you do your job right, children leave home; few communities can stand an individual's most pitiful, amateur truth telling. So the soul must stand in her own meager feathers and learn to fly - or simply take hopeful jumps into the wind. In the Christian calendar, November 1 is the Feast of All Saints, a day honoring not only those who are known and recognized as enlightened souls, but more especially the unknowns, saints who walk beside us unrecognized down the millennia. In Buddhism, we honor the bodhisattvas - saints - who refuse enlightenment and return willingly to the wheel of karma to help other beings. Similarly, in Judaism, anonymous holy men pray the world from its well-merited destruction. We never know who is walking beside us, who is our spiritual teacher. That one - who annoys you so - pretends for a day that he's the one, your personal Obi Wan Kenobi. The first of November is a splendid, subversive holiday. Imagine a hectic procession of revelers - the half-mad bag lady; a mumbling, scarred janitor whose ravaged face made the children turn away; the austere, unsmiling mother superior who seemed with great focus and clarity to do harm; a haunted music teacher, survivor of Auschwitz. I bring them before my mind's eye, these old firends of my soul, awakening to dance their day. Crazy saints; but who knows what was home in the heart? This is the feast of those who tried to take the path, so clumsily that no one knew or notice, the feast, indeed, of most of us. It's an ugly woods, I was saying to myself, padding along a trail where other walkers had broken ground before me. And then I found an extraordinary bouquet. Someone had bound an offering of dry seed pods, yew, lyme grass, red berries, and brown fern and laid it on the path: "nothing special," as Buddhists say, meaning "everything." Gathered to formality, each dry stalk proclaimed a slant, an attitude, infinite shades of neutral. All contemplative acts, silences, poems, honor the world this way. Brought together by the eye of love, a milkweed pod, a twig, allow us to see how things have been all along. A feast of being.
Mary Rose O'Reilley (The Barn at the End of the World: The Apprenticeship of a Quaker, Buddhist Shepherd)
Greta knows that for me there are no good parties. I’m okay with one or two people, but more than that and I turn into a naked mole rat. That’s what being shy feels like. Like my skin is too thin, the light too bright. Like the best place I could possibly be is in a tunnel far under the cool, dark earth. Someone asks me a question and I stare at them, empty-faced, my brain jammed up with how hard I’m trying to find something interesting to say. And in the end, all I can do is nod or shrug, because the light of their eyes looking at me, waiting for me, is just too much to take. And then it’s over and there’s one more person in the world who thinks I’m a complete and total waste of space.
Carol Rifka Brunt (Tell the Wolves I'm Home)
But there’s another way to look at it. Consider this: the pain doesn’t come from losing your soul mate, but from the disappointment that this guy wasn’t your soul mate. It’s sad, but it’s not catastrophic. And if you look at it this way—that in some regard, he failed to live up to your values and standards, so how could he have been your soul mate?—the pain is likely to be less severe. I don’t mean to minimize the amount it hurts. I’ve been there, believe me. But by grieving only for your disappointment and dashed expectations, you allow yourself to remain open to the next guy who comes along. It’s a much more manageable type of pain. We can now say more easily, “Although I’m hurt right now, this person wasn’t right for me. Now I can allow myself to find the right person.” This might sound like a small difference, but just allowing ourselves to take on this more correct understanding of what has happened can free us to move forward.
Matthew Hussey (Get the Guy: Learn Secrets of the Male Mind to Find the Man You Want and the Love You Deserve)
Her face screws up in disgust and she steps forward. "You're a fool, Miller Hart. He'll never let you walk away." He explodes. "I love her!" he roars, knocking every person back in the room. "I fucking love her!" Tears burst from my eyes and I fall into his side. He immediately grabs me and pulls me close. "I love her. I love everything she stands for and I love how much she loves me. It's more than you love me. It's more than any of you claim to love me! It's pure and light. It's made me feel. It's made me want more. If any fucker tries to take her away from me, I'll fucking kill them." Pulling up for a second, he gathers a long breath. "Slowly," he adds, shaking beside me, clinging to me tightly, like he's afraid someone will try right now. "I don't care what he says. I don't care what he thinks he can do to me. It'll be him sleeping with one eye open, Sophia, not me. So tell him. Fucking run to him and confirm what he already knows. I don't want to fuck for living anymore. Tell him I don't want to line his pockets anymore. You're not holding me to ransom. Miller Hart is out of the game. The Special One has quit!" He withdraws and takes a few moments to suck in another calming gulp of air, while everyone looks at him, shocked. Including me. "I love her. Go to him. Tell him I love her. Tell him I'm Olivia's now. And tell him if he even thinks about touching a hair on her precious head, it'll be the last thing he ever does.
Jodi Ellen Malpas (Unveiled (One Night, #3))
The only person that should wear your ring is the one person that would never… 1. Ask you to remain silent and look the other way while they hurt another. 2. Jeopardize your future by taking risks that could potentially ruin your finances or reputation. 3. Teach your children that hurting others is okay because God loves them more. God didn’t ask you to keep your family together at the expense of doing evil to others. 4. Uses religious guilt to control you, while they are doing unreligious things. 5. Doesn't believe their actions have long lasting repercussions that could affect other people negatively. 6. Reminds you of your faults, but justifies their own. 7. Uses the kids to manipulate you into believing you are nothing. As if to suggest, you couldn’t leave the relationship and establish a better Christian marriage with someone that doesn’t do these things. Thus, making you believe God hates all the divorced people and will abandon you by not bringing someone better to your life, after you decide to leave. As if! 8. They humiliate you online and in their inner circle. They let their friends, family and world know your transgressions. 9. They tell you no marriage is perfect and you are not trying, yet they are the one that has stirred up more drama through their insecurities. 10. They say they are sorry, but they don’t show proof through restoring what they have done. 11. They don’t make you a better person because you are miserable. They have only made you a victim or a bitter survivor because of their need for control over you. 12. Their version of success comes at the cost of stepping on others. 13. They make your marriage a public event, in order for you to prove your love online for them. 14. They lie, but their lies are often justified. 15. You constantly have to start over and over and over with them, as if a connection could be grown and love restored through a honeymoon phase, or constant parental supervision of one another’s down falls. 16. They tell you that they don’t care about anyone other than who they love. However, their actions don’t show they love you, rather their love has become bitter insecurity disguised in statements such as, “Look what I did for us. This is how much I care.” 17. They tell you who you can interact with and who you can’t. 18. They believe the outside world is to blame for their unhappiness. 19. They brought you to a point of improvement, but no longer have your respect. 20. They don't make you feel anything, but regret. You know in your heart you settled.
Shannon L. Alder
God will not be tolerated. He instructs us to worship and fear Him. In our world, where hundreds of things distract us from God, we have to intentionally and consistently remind ourselves of Him. Because we don’t often think about the reality of who God is, we quickly forget that He is worthy to be worshiped and loved. We are to fear Him. The answer to each of these questions is simply this: because He’s God. He has more of a right to ask us why so many people are starving. As much as we want God to explain himself to us, His creation, we are in no place to demand that He give an account to us. Can you worship a God who isn’t obligated to explain His actions to you? Could it be your arrogance that makes you think God owes you an explanation? If God is truly the greatest good on this earth, would He be loving us if He didn’t draw us toward what is best for us (even if that happens to be Himself)? Doesn’t His courting, luring, pushing, calling, and even “threatening” demonstrate His love? If He didn’t do all of that, wouldn’t we accuse Him of being unloving in the end, when all things are revealed? Has your relationship with God actually changed the way you live? Do you see evidence of God’s kingdom in your life? Or are you choking it out slowly by spending too much time, energy, money, and thought on the things of this world? Christians who did most for the present world were precisely those who thought most of the next. Jesus’ call to commitment is clear: He wants all or nothing. Our greatest fear as individuals and as a church should not be of failure but of succeeding at things in life that don’t really matter. If life is a river, then pursuing Christ requires swimming upstream. When we stop swimming, or actively following Him, we automatically begin to be swept downstream. How could we think for even a second that something on this puny little earth compares to the Creator and Sustainer and Savior of it all? True faith means holding nothing back; it bets everything on the hope of eternity. When you are truly in love, you go to great lengths to be with the one you love. You’ll drive for hours to be together, even if it’s only for a short while. You don’t mind staying up late to talk. Walking in the rain is romantic, not annoying. You’ll willingly spend a small fortune on the one you’re crazy about. When you are apart from each other, it’s painful, even miserable. He or she is all you think about; you jump at any chance to be together. There is nothing better than giving up everything and stepping into a passionate love relationship with God, the God of the universe who made galaxies, leaves, laughter, and me and you. Do you recognize the foolishness of seeking fulfillment outside of Him? Are you ready and willing to make yourself nothing? To take the very nature of a servant? To be obedient unto death? True love requires sacrifice. What are you doing right now that requires faith? God doesn’t call us to be comfortable. If one person “wastes” away his day by spending hours connecting with God, and the other person believes he is too busy or has better things to do than worship the Creator and Sustainer, who is the crazy one? Am I loving my neighbor and my God by living where I live, by driving what I drive, by talking how I talk?” If I stop pursuing Christ, I am letting our relationship deteriorate. The way we live out our days is the way we will live our lives. What will people say about your life in heaven? Will people speak of God’s work and glory through you? And even more important, how will you answer the King when He says, “What did you do with what I gave you?
Francis Chan (Crazy Love: Overwhelmed by a Relentless God)
And that’s the worst of it, the part no one ever tells you about.” “What part?” he said, his voice still clenched with grief. “How it never stops. How the pain of missing people never stops. When you burn your finger in a fire, it hurts, but it only hurts one way because you know what caused the pain and why the pain is there, and you know that it will settle, in a bit. But heart pain has facets, Silas. A thousand different sides, sharp and hard; most of them you don’t even know exist, even when you’re looking straight at them. When someone leaves, or dies, or doesn’t love you in return, well, you may think you know why your heart hurts. But wrapped in there are a hundred kinds of fear all tangled in a knot you can’t untie. Nobody wants to be alone. We all fear being left alone, being left behind. I know such things exist. But you must learn to see death as something more than loss, more than absence, more than silence. You must learn to make mourning into memory. For once a person takes leave of his life, that life becomes so much more a part of ours. In death, they come to be in our keeping. The dead find their rest within us. Thus, in remembrance, we are never alone. But people forget the power of memory. So we fear death in the deepest place of our very being, because we don’t know that memories make us immortal. We focus instead on being gone and the awful mystery behind absence. Love and death—and those two are very closely bound together—scare us because we can’t control them. We fear what we can’t control. That fear is really part of what makes us human, but mostly, we’re just afraid of the ends of stories we can’t foresee.
Ari Berk (Death Watch (The Undertaken, #1))
We have time for everything: to sleep, to run from one place to another, to regret having mistaken and to mistake again, to judge the others and to forgive ourselves we have time for reading and writing, for making corrections to our texts, to regret ever having written we have time to make plans and time not to respect them, we have time for ambitions and sicknesses, time to blame the destiny and the details, we have time to watch the clouds, advertisements or some ordinary accident, we have time to chase our wonders away and to postpone the answers, we have time to break a dream to pieces and then to reinvent it, we have time to make friends, to lose friends, we have time to receive lessons and forget them afterwards, we have time to receive gifts and not to understand them. We have time for them all. There is no time for just a bit of tenderness. When we are aware about to do this we die. I’ve learned that you cannot make someone love you; All you can do is to be a loved person. the rest … depends on the others. I’ve learned that as much as I care others might not care. I’ve learned that it takes years to earn trust and just a few seconds to lose it. I’ve learned that it does not matter WHAT you have in your life but WHO you have. I’ve learned that your charm is useful for about 15 minutes Afterwards, you should better know something. I’ve learned that no matter how you cut it, everything has two sides! I’ve learned that you should separate from your loved ones with warm words It might be the last time you see them! I’ve learned that you can still continue for a long time after saying you cannot continue anymore I’ve learned that heroes are those who do what they have to do, when they have to do it, regardless the consequences I’ve learned that there are people who love But do not know how to show it ! I’ve learned that when I am upset I have the RIGHT to be upset But not the right to be bad! I’ve learned that real friendship continues to exist despite the distance And this is true also for REAL LOVE !!! I’ve learned that if someone does not love you like you want them to It does not mean that they do not love you with all their heart. I’ve learned that no matter how good of a friend someone is for you that person will hurt you every now and then and that you have to forgive him. I’ve learned that it is not enough to be forgiven by others Sometimes you have to learn to forgive yourself. I’ve learned that no matter how much you suffer, The world will not stop for your pain. I’ve learned that the past and the circumstances might have an influence on your personality But that YOU are responsible for what you become !!! I’ve learned that if two people have an argument it does not mean that they do not love each other I’ve learned that sometimes you have to put on the first place the person, not the facts I’ve learned that two people can look at the same thing and can see something totally different I’ve learned that regardless the consequences those WHO ARE HONEST with themselves go further in life. I’ve learned that life can be changed in a few hours by people who do not even know you. I’ve learned that even when you think there is nothing more you can give when a friend calls you, you will find the strength to help him. I’ve learned that writing just like talking can ease the pains of the soul ! I’ve learned that those whom you love the most are taken away from you too soon … I’ve learned that it is too difficult to realise where to draw the line between being friendly, not hurting people and supporting your oppinions. I’ve learned to love to be loved.
Octavian Paler
When I went on my first antidepressant it had the side effect of making me fixated on suicide (which is sort of the opposite of what you want). It’s a rare side effect so I switched to something else that did work. Lots of concerned friends and family felt that the first medication’s failure was a clear sign that drugs were not the answer; if they were I would have been fixed. Clearly I wasn’t as sick as I said I was if the medication didn’t work for me. And that sort of makes sense, because when you have cancer the doctor gives you the best medicine and if it doesn’t shrink the tumor immediately then that’s a pretty clear sign you were just faking it for attention. I mean, cancer is a serious, often fatal disease we’ve spent billions of dollars studying and treating so obviously a patient would never have to try multiple drugs, surgeries, radiation, etc., to find what will work specifically for them. And once the cancer sufferer is in remission they’re set for life because once they’ve learned how to not have cancer they should be good. And if they let themselves get cancer again they can just do whatever they did last time. Once you find the right cancer medication you’re pretty much immune from that disease forever. And if you get it again it’s probably just a reaction to too much gluten or not praying correctly. Right? Well, no. But that same, completely ridiculous reasoning is what people with mental illness often hear … not just from well-meaning friends, or people who were able to fix their own issues without medication, or people who don’t understand that mental illness can be dangerous and even fatal if untreated … but also from someone much closer and more manipulative. We hear it from ourselves. We listen to the small voice in the back of our head that says, “This medication is taking money away from your family. This medication messes with your sex drive or your weight. This medication is for people with real problems. Not just people who feel sad. No one ever died from being sad.” Except that they do. And when we see celebrities who fall victim to depression’s lies we think to ourselves, “How in the world could they have killed themselves? They had everything.” But they didn’t. They didn’t have a cure for an illness that convinced them they were better off dead. Whenever I start to doubt if I’m worth the eternal trouble of medication and therapy, I remember those people who let the fog win. And I push myself to stay healthy. I remind myself that I’m not fighting against me … I’m fighting against a chemical imbalance … a tangible thing. I remind myself of the cunning untrustworthiness of the brain, both in the mentally ill and in the mentally stable. I remind myself that professional mountain climbers are often found naked and frozen to death, with their clothes folded neatly nearby because severe hypothermia can make a person feel confused and hot and convince you to do incredibly irrational things we’d never expect. Brains are like toddlers. They are wonderful and should be treasured, but that doesn’t mean you should trust them to take care of you in an avalanche or process serotonin effectively.
Jenny Lawson (Furiously Happy: A Funny Book About Horrible Things)
and if a rainy morning deprived them of other enjoyments, they were still resolute in meeting in defiance of wet and dirt, and shut themselves up, to read novels together. Yes, novels; for I will not adopt that ungenerous and impolitic custom so common with novel–writers, of degrading by their contemptuous censure the very performances, to the number of which they are themselves adding — joining with their greatest enemies in bestowing the harshest epithets on such works, and scarcely ever permitting them to be read by their own heroine, who, if she accidentally take up a novel, is sure to turn over its insipid pages with disgust. Alas! If the heroine of one novel be not patronized by the heroine of another, from whom can she expect protection and regard? I cannot approve of it. Let us leave it to the reviewers to abuse such effusions of fancy at their leisure, and over every new novel to talk in threadbare strains of the trash with which the press now groans. Let us not desert one another; we are an injured body. Although our productions have afforded more extensive and unaffected pleasure than those of any other literary corporation in the world, no species of composition has been so much decried. From pride, ignorance, or fashion, our foes are almost as many as our readers. And while the abilities of the nine–hundredth abridger of the History of England, or of the man who collects and publishes in a volume some dozen lines of Milton, Pope, and Prior, with a paper from the Spectator, and a chapter from Sterne, are eulogized by a thousand pens — there seems almost a general wish of decrying the capacity and undervaluing the labour of the novelist, and of slighting the performances which have only genius, wit, and taste to recommend them. “I am no novel–reader — I seldom look into novels — Do not imagine that I often read novels — It is really very well for a novel.” Such is the common cant. “And what are you reading, Miss — ?” “Oh! It is only a novel!” replies the young lady, while she lays down her book with affected indifference, or momentary shame. “It is only Cecilia, or Camilla, or Belinda”; or, in short, only some work in which the greatest powers of the mind are displayed, in which the most thorough knowledge of human nature, the happiest delineation of its varieties, the liveliest effusions of wit and humour, are conveyed to the world in the best–chosen language. Now, had the same young lady been engaged with a volume of the Spectator, instead of such a work, how proudly would she have produced the book, and told its name; though the chances must be against her being occupied by any part of that voluminous publication, of which either the matter or manner would not disgust a young person of taste: the substance of its papers so often consisting in the statement of improbable circumstances, unnatural characters, and topics of conversation which no longer concern anyone living; and their language, too, frequently so coarse as to give no very favourable idea of the age that could endure it.
Jane Austen (Northanger Abbey)
That was so-Gryffin always has so much pain. That you can take it away like that - it's almost like magic." Chase shrugged in the dark. "Kindness is a form of magic," he said. "So everyone should be capable of at least a little. Good night. See you in the morning." And he nodded to me and strode off. Kindness is a form of magic. Then magic had sprinkled itself across me many times, when I had not noticed its fey sparkle. I had been used to thinking of my life as bleak and full of darkness, but for the first time it occurred to me how often a stranger had stepped forward to offer me comfort and assistance, no matter how briefly. Ian Shelby. Sarah Parmer. Aylre the Safe-Keeper. The man who had stopped Carlon from beating me in the streets. Chase Beerin. They had been kind to me; most had, in different ways, been kind to Gryffin as well. Looked at that way, my life was a weave of brightness laid over a trembling black, a scrap of midnight velvet spangled with many jewels. I had another thought as I stood there, trying desperately to understand a completely altered view of my existence. Someday I might be the one to offer kindness to someone else in grim and dire circumstances. Someday I might be the one with wealth or knowledge or strength or power that could be used to alleviate another person's distress. Such a thought had literally never crossed my mind before. More than once I had been saved. Someday I might save someone else in return.
Sharon Shinn (The Dream-Maker's Magic (Safe-Keepers, #3))
Sometimes I believe I can't take any more. But I'm slowly healing. Slowly, so slowly. But every conversation is a stake into an open wound. Heartbreak ins't how it's portrayed. It's so much worse. It's devotion to a person who no longer wants you. It's obsession and depression. Somehow, some way, I think I'll be okay. I know I'll always love you. I'll always miss you. First loves don't go away. First heartbreaks linger even longer. But maybe one day I will be able to remember you and smile knowing what we had was something, even if it's gone.
Heather Demetrios (Dear Heartbreak)
Some things you carry around inside you as though they were part of your blood and bones, and when that happens, there’s nothing you can do to forget …But I had never been much of a believer. If anything, I believed that things got worse before they got better. I believed good people suffered... people who have faith were so lucky; you didn’t want to ruin it for them. You didn’t want to plant doubt where there was none. You had to treat suck individuals tenderly and hope that some of whatever they were feeling rubs off on you Those who love you will love you forever, without questions or boundaries or the constraints of time. Daily life is real, unchanging as a well-built house. But houses burn; they catch fire in the middle of the night. The night is like any other night of disaster, with every fact filtered through a veil of disbelief. The rational world has spun so completely out of its orbit, there is no way to chart or expect what might happen next At that point, they were both convinced that love was a figment of other people’s imaginations, an illusion fashioned out of smoke and air that really didn’t exist Fear, like heat, rises; it drifts up to the ceiling and when it falls down it pours out in a hot and horrible rain True love, after all, could bind a man where he didn’t belong. It could wrap him in cords that were all but impossible to break Fear is contagious. It doubles within minutes; it grows in places where there’s never been any doubt before The past stays with a man, sticking to his heels like glue, invisible and heartbreaking and unavoidable, threaded to the future, just as surely as day is sewn to night He looked at girls and saw only sweet little fuckboxes, there for him to use, no hearts involved, no souls, and, most assuredly no responsibilities. Welcome to the real world. Herein is the place where no one can tell you whether or not you’ve done the right thing. I could tell people anything I wanted to, and whatever I told them, that would be the truth as far as they were concerned. Whoever I said I was, well then, that’s who id be The truths by which she has lived her life have evaporated, leaving her empty of everything except the faint blue static of her own skepticism. She has never been a person to question herself; now she questions everything Something’s, are true no matter how hard you might try to bloc them out, and a lie is always a lie, no matter how prettily told You were nothing more than a speck of dust, good-looking dust, but dust all the same Some people needed saving She doesn’t want to waste precious time with something as prosaic as sleep. Every second is a second that belongs to her; one she understands could well be her last Why wait for anything when the world is so cockeyed and dangerous? Why sit and stare into the mirror, too fearful of what may come to pass to make a move? At last she knows how it feels to take a chance when everything in the world is at stake, breathless and heedless and desperate for more She’ll be imagining everything that’s out in front of them, road and cloud and sky, all the elements of a future, the sort you have to put together by hand, slowly and carefully until the world is yours once more
Alice Hoffman (Blue Diary)
Sometimes when a person is not being heard, it is appropriate to blame him or her. Perhaps he or she is speaking obscurely; perhaps he is claiming too much; perhaps she is speaking rather too personally. And one can, perhaps, charge Spielrein on all three counts. But, on balance, her inability to win recognition for her insight into repression was not her fault; it was Freud’s and Jung’s. Preoccupied with their own theories, and with each other, the two men simply did not pause even to take in the ideas of this junior colleague let alone to lend a helping hand in finding a more felicitous expression for her thought. More ominously still, both men privately justified their disregard by implicitly casting her once more into the role of patient, as though that role somehow precluded a person from having a voice or a vision of his or her own. It was and remains a damning comment on how psychoanalysis was evolving that so unfair a rhetorical maneuver, one so at odds with the essential genius of the new therapeutic method, came so easily to hand. In the great race between Freud and Jung to systematize psychoanalytic theory, to codify it once and for all, a simpler truth was lost sight of: Sometimes a person is not heard because she is not listened to.
John Kerr (A Most Dangerous Method: The Story of Jung, Freud & Sabina Spielrein)
The question that lingers is, how much was I a factor in my own survival, and how much was science, and how much miracle? I don't have the answer to that question. Other people look to me for the answer, I know. But if I could answer it, we would have the cure for cancer, and what's more, we would fathom the true meaning of our existences. I can deliver motivation, inspiration, hope, courage, and counsel, but I can't answer the unknowable. Personally, I don't need to try. I 'm content with simply being alive to enjoy the mystery. Good Joke: A man is caught in a flood, and as the water rises he climbs to the roof of his house and waits to be rescued. A guy in a motorboat comes by, and he says, "Hop in, I'll save you." "No thanks," the man on the rooftop says. "My Lord will save me." But the floodwaters keep rising. A few minutes later, a rescue plane flies overhead and the pilot drops a line. "No, thanks," the man on the rooftop says. "My Lord will save me." But the floodwaters rise ever higher, and finally, they overflow the roof and the man drowns. When he gets to heaven, he confronts God. "My Lord, why didn't you save me?" he implores. "You idiot," God says. "I sent a boat, I sent you a plane." I think in a way we are all just like the guy on the rooftop. Things take place, there is a confluence of events and circumstances, and we can't always know their purpose, or even if there is one. But we can take responsibility for ourselves and be brave.
Lance Armstrong (It's Not About The Bike: My Journey Back To Life)
Being infinite, the whole of reality is too much for the conscious human mind to grasp. The best any one of us can do is to take the biggest slice of Infinite Reality we can hold - intellectually, spiritually, and emotionally - and make that slice our personal sense of what is real. But no matter how broad it is, any human perception of reality can be no more than a tiny sliver of Infinite Reality. Civilization also has a limited perception of Infinite Reality. And with a haughty self-assurance, it imposes that perception on us until we think it is our own.
Gordon MacKenzie (Orbiting the Giant Hairball: A Corporate Fool's Guide to Surviving with Grace)
Even if you are not a religious person by nature or training—even if you are an out-and-out skeptic—prayer can help you much more than you believe, for it is a practical thing. What do I mean, practical? I mean that prayer fulfills these three very basic psychological needs which all people share, whether they believe in God or not: 1. Prayer helps us to put into words exactly what is troubling us. We saw in Chapter 4 that it is almost impossible to deal with a problem while it remains vague and nebulous. Praying, in a way, is very much like writing our problems down on paper. If we ask help for a problem—even from God—we must put it into words. 2. Prayer gives us a sense of sharing our burdens, of not being alone. Few of us are so strong that we can bear our heaviest burdens, our most agonizing troubles, all by ourselves. Sometimes our worries are of so ultimate a nature that we cannot discuss them even with our closest relatives or friends. Then prayer is the answer. Any psychiatrist will tell us that when we are pent-up and tense, and in an agony of spirit, it is therapeutically good to tell someone our troubles. When we can’t tell anyone else—we can always tell God. 3. Prayer puts into force an active principle of doing. It’s a first step toward action. I doubt if anyone can pray for some fulfillment, day after day, without benefiting from it—in other words, without taking some steps to bring it to pass. The world-famous scientist, Dr. Alexis Carrel, said: “Prayer is the most powerful form of energy one can generate.” So why not make use of it? Call it God or Allah or Spirit—why quarrel with definitions as long as the mysterious powers of nature take us in hand?
Dale Carnegie (How to Stop Worrying and Start Living)
Compassion is a wonderful thing. It's what one feels when one looks at a squashed caterpillar. An elevating experience. One can let oneself go and spread--you know, like taking a girdle off. You don't have to hold your stomach, your heart or your spirit up--when you feel compassion. All you have to do is look down. It's much easier. When you look up, you get a pain in the neck. Compassion is the greatest virtue. It justifies suffering. There's got to be suffering in the world, else how would we be virtuous and feel compassion?... Oh, it has an antithesis--but such a hard, demanding one... Admiration, Mrs. Jones, admiration. But that takes more than a girdle... So I say that anyone for whom we can't feel sorry is a vicious person. Like Howard Roark.
Ayn Rand (The Fountainhead)
Hypercritical, Shaming Parents Hypercritical and shaming parents send the same message to their children as perfectionistic parents do - that they are never good enough. Parents often deliberately shame their children into minding them without realizing the disruptive impact shame can have on a child's sense of self. Statements such as "You should be ashamed of yourself" or "Shame on you" are obvious examples. Yet these types of overtly shaming statements are actually easier for the child to defend against than are more subtle forms of shaming, such as contempt, humiliation, and public shaming. There are many ways that parents shame their children. These include belittling, blaming, contempt, humiliation, and disabling expectations. -BELITTLING. Comments such as "You're too old to want to be held" or "You're just a cry-baby" are horribly humiliating to a child. When a parent makes a negative comparison between his or her child and another, such as "Why can't you act like Jenny? See how she sits quietly while her mother is talking," it is not only humiliating but teaches a child to always compare himself or herself with peers and find himself or herself deficient by comparison. -BLAMING. When a child makes a mistake, such as breaking a vase while rough-housing, he or she needs to take responsibility. But many parents go way beyond teaching a lesson by blaming and berating the child: "You stupid idiot! Do you think money grows on trees? I don't have money to buy new vases!" The only thing this accomplishes is shaming the child to such an extent that he or she cannot find a way to walk away from the situation with his or her head held high. -CONTEMPT. Expressions of disgust or contempt communicate absolute rejection. The look of contempt (often a sneer or a raised upper lip), especially from someone who is significant to a child, can make him or her feel disgusting or offensive. When I was a child, my mother had an extremely negative attitude toward me. Much of the time she either looked at me with the kind of expectant expression that said, "What are you up to now?" or with a look of disapproval or disgust over what I had already done. These looks were extremely shaming to me, causing me to feel that there was something terribly wrong with me. -HUMILIATION. There are many ways a parent can humiliate a child, such as making him or her wear clothes that have become dirty. But as Gershen Kaufman stated in his book Shame: The Power of Caring, "There is no more humiliating experience than to have another person who is clearly the stronger and more powerful take advantage of that power and give us a beating." I can personally attest to this. In addition to shaming me with her contemptuous looks, my mother often punished me by hitting me with the branch of a tree, and she often did this outside, in front of the neighbors. The humiliation I felt was like a deep wound to my soul. -DISABLING EXPECTATIONS. Parents who have an inordinate need to have their child excel at a particular activity or skill are likely to behave in ways that pressure the child to do more and more. According to Kaufman, when a child becomes aware of the real possibility of failing to meet parental expectations, he or she often experiences a binding self-consciousness. This self-consciousness - the painful watching of oneself - is very disabling. When something is expected of us in this way, attaining the goal is made harder, if not impossible. Yet another way that parents induce shame in their children is by communicating to them that they are a disappointment to them. Such messages as "I can't believe you could do such a thing" or "I am deeply disappointed in you" accompanied by a disapproving tone of voice and facial expression can crush a child's spirit.
Beverly Engel (The Nice Girl Syndrome: Stop Being Manipulated and Abused -- And Start Standing Up for Yourself)
Greta knows that for me there are no good parties. I’m okay with one or two people, but more than that and I turn into a naked mole rat. That’s what being shy feels like. Like my skin is too thin, the light too bright. Like the best place I could possibly be is in a tunnel far under the cool, dark earth. Someone asks me a question and I stare at them, empty-faced, my brain jammed up with how hard I’m trying to find something interesting to say. And in the end, all I can do is nod or shrug, because the light of their eyes looking at me, waiting for me, is just too much to take. And then it’s over and there’s one more person in the world who thinks I’m a complete and total waste of time.
Carol Rifka Brunt (Tell the Wolves I'm Home)
What kind of party?” “The good kind.” “Yeah, right.” Greta knows that for me there are no good parties. I’m okay with one or two people, but more than that and I turn into a naked mole rat. That’s what being shy feels like. Like my skin is too thin, the light is too bright. Like the best place I could possibly be is in a tunnel far under the cool, dark earth. Someone asks me a question and I stare at them, empty-faced, my brain jammed up with how hard I’m trying to find something interesting to say. And in the end, all I can do is nod or shrug, because the light of their eyes looking at me, waiting for me, is just too much to take. And then it’s over and there’s one more person in the world who thinks I’m a complete and total waste of space. The worst thing is the stupid hopefulness. Every new party, every new bunch of people, and I start thinking that maybe this is my chance. That I’m going to be normal this time. A new leaf. A fresh start. But then I find myself at the party, thinking, Oh, yeah. This again. So I stand at the edge of things, crossing my fingers, praying nobody will try to look me in the eye. And the good thing is, they usually don’t.
Carol Rifka Brunt (Tell the Wolves I'm Home)
My concern with democracy is highly specific. It begins in observing the remarkable fact that, while democracy means a government accountable to the electorate, our rulers now make us accountable to them. Most Western governments hate me smoking, or eating the wrong kind of food, or hunting foxes, or drinking too much, and these are merely the surface disapprovals, the ones that provoke legislation or public campaigns. We also borrow too much money for our personal pleasures, and many of us are very bad parents. Ministers of state have been known to instruct us in elementary matters, such as the importance of reading stories to our children. Again, many of us have unsound views about people of other races, cultures, or religions, and the distribution of our friends does not always correspond, as governments think that it ought, to the cultural diversity of our society. We must face up to the grim fact that the rulers we elect are losing patience with us. No philosopher can contemplate this interesting situation without beginning to reflect on what it can mean. The gap between political realities and their public face is so great that the term “paradox” tends to crop up from sentence to sentence. Our rulers are theoretically “our” representatives, but they are busy turning us into the instruments of the projects they keep dreaming up. The business of governments, one might think, is to supply the framework of law within which we may pursue happiness on our own account. Instead, we are constantly being summoned to reform ourselves. Debt, intemperance, and incompetence in rearing our children are no doubt regrettable, but they are vices, and left alone, they will soon lead to the pain that corrects. Life is a better teacher of virtue than politicians, and most sensible governments in the past left moral faults to the churches. But democratic citizenship in the twenty-first century means receiving a stream of improving “messages” from politicians. Some may forgive these intrusions because they are so well intentioned. Who would defend prejudice, debt, or excessive drinking? The point, however, is that our rulers have no business telling us how to live. They are tiresome enough in their exercise of authority—they are intolerable when they mount the pulpit. Nor should we be in any doubt that nationalizing the moral life is the first step towards totalitarianism. We might perhaps be more tolerant of rulers turning preachers if they were moral giants. But what citizen looks at the government today thinking how wise and virtuous it is? Public respect for politicians has long been declining, even as the population at large has been seduced into demanding political solutions to social problems. To demand help from officials we rather despise argues for a notable lack of logic in the demos. The statesmen of eras past have been replaced by a set of barely competent social workers eager to take over the risks of our everyday life. The electorates of earlier times would have responded to politicians seeking to bribe us with such promises with derision. Today, the demos votes for them.
Kenneth Minogue (The Servile Mind: How Democracy Erodes the Moral Life)
I’ve been in your skin,” he taunted. “I know you inside and out. There’s nothing there. Do us all a favor and die so we can start working on another plan and quit thinking maybe you’ll grow the fuck up and be capable of something.” Okay, enough! “You don’t know me inside and out,” I snarled. “You may have gotten in my skin, but you have never gotten inside my heart. Go ahead, Barrons, make me slice and dice myself. Go ahead, play games with me. Push me around. Lie to me. Bully me. Be your usual constant jackass self. Stalk around all broody and pissy and secretive, but you’re wrong about me. There’s something inside me you’d better be afraid of. And you can’t touch my soul. You will never touch my soul!” I raised my hand, drew back the knife, and let it fly. It sliced through the air, straight for his head. He avoided it with preternatural grace, a mere whisper of a movement, precisely and only as much as was required to not get hit. The hilt vibrated in the wood of the ornate mantel next to his head. “So, fuck you, Jericho Barrons, and not the way you like it. Fuck you—as in, you can’t touch me. Nobody can.” I kicked the table at him. It crashed into his shins. I picked up a lamp from the end table. Flung it straight at his head. He ducked again. I grabbed a book. It thumped off his chest. He laughed, dark eyes glittering with exhilaration. I launched myself at him, slammed a fist into his face. I heard a satisfying crunch and felt something in his nose give. He didn’t try to hit me back or push me away. Merely wrapped his arms around me and crushed me tight to his body, trapping my arms against his chest. Then, when I thought he might just squeeze me to death, he dropped his head forward, into the hollow where my shoulder met my neck. “Do you miss fucking me, Ms. Lane?” he purred against my ear. Voice resonated in my skull, pressuring a reply. I was tall and strong and proud inside myself. Nobody owned me. I didn’t have to answer any questions I didn’t want to, ever again. “Wouldn’t you just love to know?” I purred back. “You want more of me, don’t you, Barrons? I got under your skin deep. I hope you got addicted to me. I was a wild one, wasn’t I? I bet you never had sex like that in your entire existence, huh, O Ancient One? I bet I rocked your perfectly disciplined little world. I hope wanting me hurts like hell!” His hands were suddenly cruelly tight on my waist. “There’s only one question that matters, Ms. Lane, and it’s the one you never get around to asking. People are capable of varying degrees of truth. The majority spend their entire lives fabricating an elaborate skein of lies, immersing themselves in the faith of bad faith, doing whatever it takes to feel safe. The person who truly lives has precious few moments of safety, learns to thrive in any kind of storm. It’s the truth you can stare down stone-cold that makes you what you are. Weak or strong. Live or die. Prove yourself. How much truth can you take, Ms. Lane?” Dreamfever
Karen Marie Moning
Did he say anything to you?” “Just that I was supposed to watch you while he was gone. A hunt can take several days.” “Really? I had no idea it would take that long.” I hestitated, “So…he doesn’t mind you staying here while he’s gone.” “Oh, he minds,” he chuckled, “but he wants to make sure you’re safe. At least he trusts me that much.” “Well, I think he’s mad at both of us right now.” Kishan looked at me curiously with a raised eyebrow. “How so?” “Um…let’s just say we had a misunderstanding.” Kishan’s face turned hard. “Don’t worry, Kelsey. I’m sure that whatever he’s upset about is foolish. He’s very argumentative.” I sighed and shook my head sadly. “No, it’s really all my fault. I’m difficult, a hindrance, and I’m a pain to have around sometimes. He’s probably used to being around sophisticated, more experienced women who are much more…more…well, more than I am.” Kishan quirked an eyebrow. “Ren hasn’t been around any women as far as I know. I must confess that I’m now exceedingly curious as to what your argument was about. Whether you tell me or not, I won’t tolerate any more derogatory comments about yourself. He’s lucky to have you, and he’d better realize it.” He grinned. “Of course, if you did have a falling out, you’re always welcome to stay with me.” “Thanks for the offer, but I don’t really want to live in the jungle.” He laughed. “For you, I would even consider a change of residence. You, my lovely, are a prize worth fighting for.” I laughed and punched him lightly on the arm. “You, sir, are a major flirt. Worth fighting for? I think you two have been tigers for too long. I’m no great beauty, especially when I’m stuck out here in the jungle. I haven’t even picked a college major yet. What have I ever done that would make someone want to fight over me?” Kishan apparently took my rhetorical questions seriously. He reflected for a moment, and then answered, “For one thing, I’ve never met a woman so dedicated to helping others. You put your own life at risk for a person you met only a few weeks ago. You are confident, feisty, intelligent, and full of empathy. I find you charming and, yes, beautiful.” The golden-eyed prince fingered a strand of my hair. I blushed at his assessment, sipped my water, and then said softly, “I don’t like him being angry with me.” Kishan shrugged and dropped his hand, looking slightly annoyed that I’d steered the conversation back to Ren. “Yes. I’ve been on the receiving side of his anger, and I’ve learned not to underestimate his ability to hold a grudge.
Colleen Houck (Tiger's Curse (The Tiger Saga, #1))
Sometimes all you need is a little bit of Sunshine. I have learnt that Life is not about the walk that we have taken but the company, the experiences we have gathered. I have learnt that in each and every unknown path of our journey we get to know more of our own selves. I have learnt that Forgiveness comes from Love and knowledge that everyone has a story that we cannot fathom. I have learnt that Darkness only comes to lead us to Light while moulding our grey shades in the best silhouette of our soul. I have learnt that all it takes is a little word of encouragement or a pat on a shoulder to let a person know how valued that person truly is. I have learnt that most special moments and bonds can come with a time frame and as long as we have them we need to live that to its fullness and then just let that be. I have learnt that making connections isn't difficult but the easiest way to connect to one's own self. I have learnt that silence has so much more clutched up than words could ever open. I have learnt that sunsets are as beautiful as sunrises, nights are as dreamy as morns. I have learnt that sometimes Life takes a complete different turn to what we plan or expect but when seen from a distance that turn actually looks just the one meant to take us to our destination, where our souls embrace every walk taken so far to know, to accept all that we are. I have learnt that in a world where we could be anything, I chose to be Love. I have learnt that sometimes Love is not what we wait for or what we expect others to shower us with but what we embody and shower others with for Love is the Dream of a Dreamer, the Melody of a Music, the Sunshine of a Sun. And sometimes all you need is a little bit of Sunshine.
Debatrayee Banerjee
We can take things as slowly as you want, but you know it’s too late now to change your mind, Pierce,” he said, in a warning tone. “Of course,” I said. I could see I had approached this all wrong. Where, when you actually needed one, was one of those annoying women’s magazines with advice on how to handle your man? Although that advice probably didn’t apply to death deities. “Because the Furies are after me. And I promised you that I wouldn’t try to escape. That isn’t what I was-“ “No,” he said, with an abrupt shake of his head. “The Furies have no part in this. It doesn’t matter anymore whether or not you try to escape.” He was pacing the length of the room. A muscle had begun to twitch wildly in the side of his jaw. “I thought you knew. I thought you understood. Haven’t you read Homer?” Not again. Mr. Smith was obsessed with this Homer person, too. “No, John,” I said, with forced patience. “I’m afraid we don’t have time to study the ancient Greek poets in school anymore because we have so much stuff to learn that happened since you died, such as the Civil War and the Holocaust and making files in Excel-“ “Well, considering what they had to say about the Fates,” John interrupted, impatiently, “Homer might possibly have been of more use to you.” “The Fates?” The Fates were something I dimly remembered having been mentioned in the section we’d studied on Greek mythology. They were busybodies who presided over everyone’s destiny. “What did Homer have to say about them?” John dragged a hand through his hair. For some reason, he wouldn’t meet my gaze. “The Fates decreed that anyone who ate or drank in the realm of the dead had to remain there for all eternity.” I stared at him. “Right,” I said. “Only if they are pomegranate seeds, like Persephone. The fruit of the dead.” He stopped pacing suddenly and lifted his gaze to mine. His eyes seemed to burn through to my soul. “Pomegranate seeds are what Persephone happened to eat while she was in the Underworld,” he said. “That’s why they call them the fruit of the dead. But the rule is any food or drink.” A strange feeling of numbness had begun to spread across my body. My mouth became too dry for me to speak. “However you feel about me, Pierce,” he went on, relentlessly, “you’re stuck here with me for the rest of eternity.
Meg Cabot (Underworld (Abandon, #2))
Most churches do not grow beyond the spiritual health of their leadership. Many churches have a pastor who is trying to lead people to a Savior he has yet to personally encounter. If spiritual gifting is no proof of authentic faith, then certainly a job title isn't either. You must have a clear sense of calling before you enter ministry. Being a called man is a lonely job, and many times you feel like God has abandoned you in your ministry. Ministry is more than hard. Ministry is impossible. And unless we have a fire inside our bones compelling us, we simply will not survive. Pastoral ministry is a calling, not a career. It is not a job you pursue. If you don’t think demons are real, try planting a church! You won’t get very far in advancing God’s kingdom without feeling resistance from the enemy. If I fail to spend two hours in prayer each morning, the devil gets the victory through the day. Once a month I get away for the day, once a quarter I try to get out for two days, and once a year I try to get away for a week. The purpose of these times is rest, relaxation, and solitude with God. A pastor must always be fearless before his critics and fearful before his God. Let us tremble at the thought of neglecting the sheep. Remember that when Christ judges us, he will judge us with a special degree of strictness. The only way you will endure in ministry is if you determine to do so through the prevailing power of the Holy Spirit. The unsexy reality of the pastorate is that it involves hard work—the heavy-lifting, curse-ridden, unyielding employment of your whole person for the sake of the church. Pastoral ministry requires dogged, unyielding determination, and determination can only come from one source—God himself. Passive staff members must be motivated. Erring elders and deacons must be confronted. Divisive church members must be rebuked. Nobody enjoys doing such things (if you do, you should be not be a pastor!), but they are necessary in order to have a healthy church over the long haul. If you allow passivity, laziness, and sin to fester, you will soon despise the church you pastor. From the beginning of sacred Scripture (Gen. 2:17) to the end (Rev. 21:8), the penalty for sin is death. Therefore, if we sin, we should die. But it is Jesus, the sinless one, who dies in our place for our sins. The good news of the gospel is that Jesus died to take to himself the penalty of our sin. The Bible is not Christ-centered because it is generally about Jesus. It is Christ-centered because the Bible’s primary purpose, from beginning to end, is to point us toward the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus for the salvation and sanctification of sinners. Christ-centered preaching goes much further than merely providing suggestions for how to live; it points us to the very source of life and wisdom and explains how and why we have access to him. Felt needs are set into the context of the gospel, so that the Christian message is not reduced to making us feel better about ourselves. If you do not know how sinful you are, you feel no need of salvation. Sin-exposing preaching helps people come face-to-face with their sin and their great need for a Savior. We can worship in heaven, and we can talk to God in heaven, and we can read our Bibles in heaven, but we can’t share the gospel with our lost friends in heaven. “Would your city weep if your church did not exist?” It was crystal-clear for me. Somehow, through fear or insecurity, I had let my dreams for our church shrink. I had stopped thinking about the limitless things God could do and had been distracted by my own limitations. I prayed right there that God would forgive me of my small-mindedness. I asked God to forgive my lack of faith that God could use a man like me to bring the message of the gospel through our missionary church to our lost city. I begged God to renew my heart and mind with a vision for our city that was more like Christ's.
Darrin Patrick (Church Planter: The Man, The Message, The Mission)
Things I've Learned in 18 Years of Life   1) True love is not something found, rather [sic] something encountered. You can’t go out and look for it. The person you marry and the person you love could easily be two different people. So have a beautiful life while waiting for God to bring along your once-in-a-lifetime love. Don't allow yourself to settle for anything less than them. Stop worrying about who you're going to marry because God's already on the front porch watching your grandchildren play.   2) God WILL give you more than you can handle, so you can learn to lean on him in times of need. He won't tempt you more than you can handle, though. So don't lose hope. Hope anchors the soul.   3) Remember who you are and where you came from. Remember that you are not from this earth. You are a child of heaven, you're invaluable, you are beautiful. Carry yourself that way.   4) Don't put your faith in humanity, humanity is inherently flawed. We are all imperfect people created and loved by a perfect God. Perfect. So put your faith in Him.   5) I fail daily, and that is why I succeed.   6) Time passes, and nothing and everything changes. Don't live life half asleep. Don't drag your soul through the days. Feel everything you do. Be there physically and mentally. Do things that make you feel this way as well.   7) Live for beauty. We all need beauty, get it where you can find it. Clothing, paintings, sculptures, music, tattoos, nature, literature, makeup. It's all art and it's what makes us human. Same as feeling the things we do. Stay human.   8) If someone makes you think, keep them. If someone makes you feel, keep them.   9) There is nothing the human brain cannot do. You can change anything about yourself that you want to. Fight for it. It's all a mental game.   10) God didn’t break our chains for us to be bound again. Alcohol, drugs, depression, addiction, toxic relationships, monotony and repetition, they bind us. Break those chains. Destroy your past and give yourself new life like God has given you.   11) This is your life. Your struggle, your happiness, your sorrow, and your success. You do not need to justify yourself to anyone. You owe no one an explanation for the choices that you make and the position you are in. In the same vein, respect yourself by not comparing your journey to anyone else's.   12) There is no wrong way to feel.   13) Knowledge is everywhere, keep your eyes open. Look at how diverse and wonderful this world is. Are you going to miss out on beautiful people, places, experiences, and ideas because you are close-minded? I sure hope not.   14) Selfless actions always benefit you more than the recipient.   15) There is really no room for regret in this life. Everything happens for a reason. If you can't find that reason, accept there is one and move on.   16) There is room, however, for guilt. Resolve everything when it first comes up. That's not only having integrity, but also taking care of your emotional well-being.   17) If the question is ‘Am I strong enough for this?’ The answer is always, ‘Yes, but not on your own.’   18) Mental health and sanity above all.   19) We love because He first loved us. The capacity to love is the ultimate gift, the ultimate passion, euphoria, and satisfaction. We have all of that because He first loved us. If you think about it in those terms, it is easy to love Him. Just by thinking of how much He loves us.   20) From destruction comes creation. Beauty will rise from the ashes.   21) Many things can cause depression. Such as knowing you aren't becoming the person you have the potential to become. Choose happiness and change. The sooner the better, and the easier.   22) Half of happiness is as simple as eating right and exercising. You are one big chemical reaction. So are your emotions. Give your body the right reactants to work with and you'll be satisfied with the products.
Scott Hildreth (Broken People)
We had better want the consequences of what we believe or disbelieve, because the consequences will come! . . . But how can a society set priorities if there are no basic standards? Are we to make our calculations using only the arithmetic of appetite? . . . The basic strands which have bound us together socially have begun to fray, and some of them have snapped. Even more pressure is then placed upon the remaining strands. The fact that the giving way is gradual will not prevent it from becoming total. . . . Given the tremendous asset that the family is, we must do all we can within constitutional constraints to protect it from predatory things like homosexuality and pornography. . . . Our whole republic rests upon the notion of “obedience to the unenforceable,” upon a tremendous emphasis on inner controls through self-discipline. . . . Different beliefs do make for different behaviors; what we think does affect our actions; concepts do have consequences. . . . Once society loses its capacity to declare that some things are wrong per se, then it finds itself forever building temporary defenses, revising rationales, drawing new lines—but forever falling back and losing its nerve. A society which permits anything will eventually lose everything! Take away a consciousness of eternity and see how differently time is spent. Take away an acknowledgement of divine design in the structure of life and then watch the mindless scurrying to redesign human systems to make life pain-free and pleasure-filled. Take away regard for the divinity in one’s neighbor, and watch the drop in our regard for his property. Take away basic moral standards and observe how quickly tolerance changes into permissiveness. Take away the sacred sense of belonging to a family or community, and observe how quickly citizens cease to care for big cities. Those of us who are business-oriented are quick to look for the bottom line in our endeavors. In the case of a value-free society, the bottom line is clear—the costs are prohibitive! A value-free society eventually imprisons its inhabitants. It also ends up doing indirectly what most of its inhabitants would never have agreed to do directly—at least initially. Can we turn such trends around? There is still a wealth of wisdom in the people of this good land, even though such wisdom is often mute and in search of leadership. People can often feel in their bones the wrongness of things, long before pollsters pick up such attitudes or before such attitudes are expressed in the ballot box. But it will take leadership and articulate assertion of basic values in all places and in personal behavior to back up such assertions. Even then, time and the tides are against us, so that courage will be a key ingredient. It will take the same kind of spunk the Spartans displayed at Thermopylae when they tenaciously held a small mountain pass against overwhelming numbers of Persians. The Persians could not dislodge the Spartans and sent emissaries forward to threaten what would happen if the Spartans did not surrender. The Spartans were told that if they did not give up, the Persians had so many archers in their army that they would darken the skies with their arrows. The Spartans said simply: “So much the better, we will fight in the shade!
Neal A. Maxwell
RICHARD, DUKE OF GLOUCESTER: Why then I do but dream on sovereignty, Like one that stands upon a promontory And spies a far-off shore where he would tread, Wishing his foot were equal with his eye, And chides the sea that sunders him from thence, Saying, he'll lade it dry to have his way: So do I wish the crown, being so far off, And so I chide the means that keeps me from it, And so, I say, I'll cut the causes off, Flattering me with impossibilities, My eye's too quick, my hear o'erweens too much, Unless my hand and strength could equal them. Well, say there is no kingdom then for Richard; What other pleasure can the world afford? I'll make my heaven in a lady's lap, And deck my body in gay ornaments, And witch sweet ladies with my words and looks. O miserable thought! and more unlikely Than to accomplish twenty golden crowns! Why, love forswore me in my mother's womb; And for I should not deal in her soft laws, She did corrupt frail nature with some bribe, To shrink mine arm up like a wither'd shrub, To make an envious mountain on my back, Where sits deformity to mock my body; To shape my legs of an unequal size, To disproportion me in every part, Like to a chaos, or an unlick'd bear-whelp That carries no impression like the dam. And am I then a man to be belov'd? O monstrous fault, to harbor such a thought! Then since this earth affords no joy to me But to command, to check, to o'erbear such As are of better person than myself, I'll make my heaven to dream upon the crown, And whiles I live, t' account this world but hell, Until my misshap'd trunk that bears this head Be round impaled with a glorious crown. And yet I know not how to get the crown, For many lives stand between me and home; And I - like one lost in a thorny wood, That rents the thorns, and is rent with the thorns, Seeking a way, and straying from the way, Not knowing how to find the open air, But toiling desperately to find it out - Torment myself to catch the English crown; And from that torment I will free myself, Or hew my way out with a bloody axe. Why, I can smile, and murther whiles I smile, And cry "Content" to that which grieves my heart, And wet my cheeks with artificial tears, And frame my face to all occasions. I'll drown more sailors than the mermaid shall, I'll slay more gazers than the basilisk, I'll play the orator as well as Nestor, Deceive more slily than Ulysses could, And like a Simon, take another Troy. I can add colors to the chameleon, Change shapes with Proteus for advantages, And set the murtherous Machevil to school. Can I do this, and cannot get a crown? Tut, were it farther off, I'll pluck it down.
William Shakespeare (King Henry VI, Part 3)
One of the best-known studies of availability suggests that awareness of your own biases can contribute to peace in marriages, and probably in other joint projects. In a famous study, spouses were asked, “How large was your personal contribution to keeping the place tidy, in percentages?” They also answered similar questions about “taking out the garbage,” “initiating social engagements,” etc. Would the self-estimated contributions add up to 100%, or more, or less? As expected, the self-assessed contributions added up to more than 100%. The explanation is a simple availability bias: both spouses remember their own individual efforts and contributions much more clearly than those of the other, and the difference in availability leads to a difference in judged frequency.
Daniel Kahneman (Thinking, Fast and Slow)
New Rule: Americans must realize what makes NFL football so great: socialism. That's right, the NFL takes money from the rich teams and gives it to the poorer one...just like President Obama wants to do with his secret army of ACORN volunteers. Green Bay, Wisconsin, has a population of one hundred thousand. Yet this sleepy little town on the banks of the Fuck-if-I-know River has just as much of a chance of making it to the Super Bowl as the New York Jets--who next year need to just shut the hell up and play. Now, me personally, I haven't watched a Super Bowl since 2004, when Janet Jackson's nipple popped out during halftime. and that split-second glimpse of an unrestrained black titty burned by eyes and offended me as a Christian. But I get it--who doesn't love the spectacle of juiced-up millionaires giving one another brain damage on a giant flatscreen TV with a picture so real it feels like Ben Roethlisberger is in your living room, grabbing your sister? It's no surprise that some one hundred million Americans will watch the Super Bowl--that's forty million more than go to church on Christmas--suck on that, Jesus! It's also eighty-five million more than watched the last game of the World Series, and in that is an economic lesson for America. Because football is built on an economic model of fairness and opportunity, and baseball is built on a model where the rich almost always win and the poor usually have no chance. The World Series is like The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills. You have to be a rich bitch just to play. The Super Bowl is like Tila Tequila. Anyone can get in. Or to put it another way, football is more like the Democratic philosophy. Democrats don't want to eliminate capitalism or competition, but they'd like it if some kids didn't have to go to a crummy school in a rotten neighborhood while others get to go to a great school and their dad gets them into Harvard. Because when that happens, "achieving the American dream" is easy for some and just a fantasy for others. That's why the NFL literally shares the wealth--TV is their biggest source of revenue, and they put all of it in a big commie pot and split it thirty-two ways. Because they don't want anyone to fall too far behind. That's why the team that wins the Super Bowl picks last in the next draft. Or what the Republicans would call "punishing success." Baseball, on the other hand, is exactly like the Republicans, and I don't just mean it's incredibly boring. I mean their economic theory is every man for himself. The small-market Pittsburgh Steelers go to the Super Bowl more than anybody--but the Pittsburgh Pirates? Levi Johnston has sperm that will not grow and live long enough to see the Pirates in a World Series. Their payroll is $40 million; the Yankees' is $206 million. The Pirates have about as much chance as getting in the playoffs as a poor black teenager from Newark has of becoming the CEO of Halliburton. So you kind of have to laugh--the same angry white males who hate Obama because he's "redistributing wealth" just love football, a sport that succeeds economically because it does just that. To them, the NFL is as American as hot dogs, Chevrolet, apple pie, and a second, giant helping of apple pie.
Bill Maher (The New New Rules: A Funny Look At How Everybody But Me Has Their Head Up Their Ass)
But now I speculate re the ants' invisible organ of aggregate thought... if, in a city park of broad reaches, winding paths, roadways, and lakes, you can imagine seeing on a warm and sunny Sunday afternoon the random and unpredictable movement of great numbers of human beings in the same way... if you watch one person, one couple, one family, a child, you can assure yourself of the integrity of the individual will and not be able to divine what the next moment will bring. But when the masses are celebrating a beautiful day in the park in a prescribed circulation of activities, the wider lens of thought reveals nothing errant, nothing inconstant or unnatural to the occasion. And if someone acts in a mutant un-park manner, alarms go off, the unpredictable element, a purse snatcher, a gun wielder, is isolated, surrounded, ejected, carried off as waste. So that while we are individually and privately dyssynchronous, moving in different ways, for different purposes, in different directions, we may at the same time comprise, however blindly, the pulsing communicating cells of an urban over-brain. The intent of this organ is to enjoy an afternoon in the park, as each of us street-grimy urbanites loves to do. In the backs of our minds when we gather for such days, do we know this? How much of our desire to use the park depends on the desires of others to do the same? How much of the idea of a park is in the genetic invitation on nice days to reflect our massive neuromorphology? There is no central control mechanism telling us when and how to use the park. That is up to us. But when we do, our behavior there is reflective, we can see more of who we are because of the open space accorded to us, and it is possible that it takes such open space to realize in simple form the ordinary identity we have as one multicellular culture of thought that is always there, even when, in the comparative blindness of our personal selfhood, we are flowing through the streets at night or riding under them, simultaneously, as synaptic impulses in the metropolitan brain. Is this a stretch? But think of the contingent human mind, how fast it snaps onto the given subject, how easily it is introduced to an idea, an image that it had not dreamt of thinking of a millisecond before... Think of how the first line of a story yokes the mind into a place, a time, in the time it takes to read it. How you can turn on the radio and suddenly be in the news, and hear it and know it as your own mind's possession in the moment's firing of a neuron. How when you hear a familiar song your mind adopts its attitudinal response to life before the end of the first bar. How the opening credits of a movie provide the parameters of your emotional life for its ensuing two hours... How all experience is instantaneous and instantaneously felt, in the nature of ordinary mind-filling revelation. The permeable mind, contingently disposed for invasion, can be totally overrun and occupied by all the characteristics of the world, by everything that is the case, and by the thoughts and propositions of all other minds considering everything that is the case... as instantly and involuntarily as the eye fills with the objects that pass into its line of vision.
E.L. Doctorow (City of God)
Cam reached for her left hand. Taking the signet ring between his fingers, he drew it off easily and gave it to her. “Here. Although I’d rather you left it on.” Amelia’s mouth fell open. She examined her hand, then the ring, and hesitantly pushed it back on the same finger. It slid over her knuckle and back again with ease. “How did you do that?” “I helped you to relax.” He ran a coaxing hand along her spine. “Put it back on, Amelia.” “I can’t. That would mean I’ve accepted your proposal, and I haven’t.” Stretching like a cat, Cam rolled her flat again, his weight partially supported on his elbows. Amelia drew in a quick breath as she felt him still firm within her. “You can’t lie with me twice and then refuse to marry me.” Cam lowered his head to kiss her ear. “I’ll be ruined.” He worked his way to the soft place behind her earlobe. “And I’ll feel so cheap.” Despite the seriousness of the matter, Amelia had to bite back a smile. “I’m doing you a great favor by refusing you. You’ll thank me for it someday.” “I’ll thank you right now if you’ll put the damned ring back on.” She shook her head. Cam pushed a bit farther inside her, making her gasp. “What about my personal endowments? Who’s going to take care of them?” “You can take care of them”— she squirmed to the side to set the ring on the bedside table—“ all by yourself.” Cam moved with her obligingly. “It’s much more satisfying when you’re involved.” As he reached to retrieve the ring, his body shifted higher in hers. She tensed in surprise. He felt harder inside her, thicker, his desire gaining new momentum. “Cam,” she protested, glancing at the closed door. She grabbed for his wrist, trying to keep his hand away from the ring. He grappled with her playfully, turning until they had completed a full revolution across the mattress and she was under him again. He was rampantly aroused now, teasing her with slow lunges. Twisting beneath him, Amelia pushed at his dark head as he began to kiss her breasts. “But … we just finished…” Cam lifted his head. “Roma,” he said, as if by way of explanation, and settled back over her.
Lisa Kleypas (Mine Till Midnight (The Hathaways, #1))
What does it feel like to be in love?” ‘…I take my time answering because I’m not sure how to answer. It’s more emotion than words, and I’ve never really thought about to describe it. I think of the fear and doubt and worry that come with all this feeling. The questioning and the opening up about every little thing until you feel like a frog on a dissection table, completely exposed. The caring too much, or maybe just enough, and the scariness that comes with that. The fact that there is one person on this earth who has the ability to hurt you more than any other because that’s how much you love them. The having to trust that they won’t and that maybe, just maybe, they mean what they say and that, at least for a while, they can be your floor.’ “When it’s with the right person, you feel invincible and seen and at home, no matter where you are in the world.
Jennifer Niven (Breathless)
I love her!” he roars, knocking every person back in the room. “I fucking love her!” Tears burst from my eyes, and I fall into his side. He immediately grabs me and pulls me close. “I love her. I love everything she stands for and I love how much she loves me. It’s more than you love me. It’s more than any of you claim to love me! It’s pure and light. It’s made me feel. It’s made me want more. If any fucker tries to take her away from me, I’ll fucking kill them.” Pulling up for a second, he gathers a long breath. “Slowly,” he adds, shaking beside me, clinging to me tightly, like he’s afraid someone will try right now. “I don’t care what he says. I don’t care what he thinks he can do to me. It’ll be him sleeping with one eye open, Sophia, not me. So tell him. Fucking run to him and confirm what he already knows. I don’t want to fuck for a living anymore. Tell him I don’t want to line his pockets anymore. You’re not holding me for ransom. Miller Hart is out of the game. The Special One has quit!” He withdraws and takes a few moments to suck in another calming gulp of air, while everyone looks at him, shocked. Including me. “I love her. Go to him. Tell him I love her. Tell him I’m Olivia’s now. And tell him if he even thinks about touching a hair on her precious head, it’ll be the last thing he ever does.
Jodi Ellen Malpas (Unveiled (One Night, #3))
While most people view physical violence as a more serious offense than psychological violence, both battered women and prisoners of war report that threat of physical violence is more psychologically debilitating than actual physical violence. Emotional abuse, such as the threat to maim or kill, is often perceived as a threat to physical survival. For these reasons, psychological violence may promote the development of the syndrome as much or more than physical violence. This makes sense. A person who threatens to shoot you may be the one knocking on your door, calling you on the phone, turning into your driveway, or waiting around the next corner. Every moment is filled with fear until you are finally shot. Once shot, you can relax because you now know where and how the shooting occurred, how seriously you were hurt, what you need to do to take care of the wound, etc.
Dee L.R. Graham (Loving to Survive: Sexual Terror, Men's Violence, and Women's Lives)
The concept of resilience is used in our field. But if you look carefully at the biology after a traumatic experience-all the way down to the way genes are expressed-trauma will change everyone in some way. And those changes will be there even if they don’t result in any apparent ‘real life’ problems for the person, even if the person demonstrates resilience. A child may continue to do just as well in school, for example, but it takes much more energy and effort. Or we may find that a child is able to return to his previous level of emotional functioning, but changes in his neuroendocrine system may make him more likely to develop diabetes. This is, in essence, what the ACE studies have demonstrated. Adversity impacts the developing child. Period. What that impact will be, when it may manifest, how it maybe ‘buffered’-we can’t always say. But developmental trauma will always influence our body and brain.
Bruce D. Perry (What Happened To You?: Conversations on Trauma, Resilience, and Healing)
The magic of Paul’s intelligence is that he has more patience than anyone I’ve ever met, and with it he simply wears problems down. To count a hundred million stars, he told me once, at the rate of one per second, sounds like a job that no one could possibly complete in a lifetime. In reality, it would only take three years. The key is focus, a willingness not to be distracted. And that is Paul’s gift: an intuition of just how much a person can do slowly.
Ian Caldwell (The Rule of Four)
The playing field isn't level, and the people at the top often don't notice that. Perspective matters—it matters. Because a multi-millionaire can say to himself, 'I give away money to the poor, and I've never shoved a poor person in line' (if rich people ever actually stand in lines)—'so I'm a good guy.' And therein lies the danger. The 'I'm a good guy' standard doesn't work. Sure, there are rich people who use their money for good causes that do nothing to advance their own financial interests. But when people with money use their money to get more money, they aren't evil, they're just acting rationally. And they're also acting rationally in the narrowest sense of that word when they use that money to buy favors from the government. But when they buy favors from the government, they are taking something that belongs to the rest of us. And when enough rich people or rich corporations buy enough favors, the whole economic and political system starts to tilt their way. And if the American people allow this to go on long enough, there will come a point when the rich and powerful will be using so much of their money to buy so much influence over our government, that it will unwind the whole premise of democracy. Instead of one person, one vote—giving each of us a say in how this country is run—we will become an oligarchy, a nation in which the powerful few make sure that the government runs in order to serve their interests.
Elizabeth Warren (This Fight Is Our Fight: The Battle to Save America's Middle Class)
One of my greatest concerns for the young women of the Church is that they will sell themselves short in dating and marriage by forgetting who they really are--daughters of a loving Heavenly Father. . . . Unfortunately, a young woman who lowers her standards far enough can always find temporary acceptance from immature and unworthy young men. . . . At their best, daughters of God are loving, caring, understanding, and sympathetic. This does not mean they are also gullible, unrealistic, or easily manipulated. If a young man does not measure up to the standards a young woman has set, he may promise her that he will change if she will marry him first. Wise daughters of God will insist that young men who seek their hand in marriage change before the wedding, not after. (I am referring here to the kind of change that will be part of the lifelong growth of every disciple.) He may argue that she doesn't really believe in repentance and forgiveness. But one of the hallmarks of repentance is forsaking sin. Especially when the sin involves addictive behaviors or a pattern of transgression, wise daughters of God insist on seeing a sustained effort to forsake sin over a long period of time as true evidence of repentance. They do not marry someone because they believe they can change him. Young women, please do not settle for someone unworthy of your gospel standards. On the other hand, young women should not refuse to settle down. There is no right age for young men or young women to marry, but there is a right attitude for them to have about marriage: "Thy will be done" . . . . The time to marry is when we are prepared to meet a suitable mate, not after we have done all the enjoyable things in life we hoped to do while we were single. . . . When I hear some young men and young women set plans in stone which do not include marriage until after age twenty-five or thirty or until a graduate degree has been obtained, I recall Jacob's warning, "Seek not to counsel the Lord, but to take counsel from his hand" (Jacob 4:10). . . . How we conduct ourselves in dating relationships is a good indication of how we will conduct ourselves in a marriage relationship. . . . Individuals considering marriage would be wise to conduct their own prayerful due diligence--long before they set their hearts on marriage. There is nothing wrong with making a T-square diagram and on either side of the vertical line listing the relative strengths and weaknesses of a potential mate. I sometimes wonder whether doing more homework when it comes to this critical decision would spare some Church members needless heartache. I fear too many fall in love with each other or even with the idea of marriage before doing the background research necessary to make a good decision. It is sad when a person who wants to be married never has the opportunity to marry. But it is much, much sadder to be married to the wrong person. If you do not believe me, talk with someone who has made that mistake. Think carefully about the person you are considering marrying, because marriage should last for time and for all eternity.
Robert D. Hales (Return: Four Phases of our Mortal Journey Home)
Fighting your inner demons, Fighting that inner war. Not knowing what's wrong or right. Asking yourself, "How much more?" How many more endless questions? How many more sleepless nights? How much more can I take, Of life and it's enternal fight? Trying to heal your pain. Somehow you can break the broken. People come but never stay. No one listens to what you've spoken. Love. Trust. Safety. Hope. It's gone and fled away. You have nothing left to your name, But the scars that always stay. Inferiorty. This is all you feel. No matter what you do, You're never good enough. And no one has a clue. No one knows, How you tear yourself apart. They don't know About your abused heart. They'll never understand The hate for yourself. They'll never see Your mental health. You want to believe. Believe you're worth something. Believe you're a good person. Believe you're worth loving. But the louder voice denies this. It tells you no one cares. That you're a terrible person. All you're doing is wasting air. Inner demons, inner war. I'm in the middle of it all. Pulling myself together, Knowing all I'll do is fall.
Celine Alesha Chadee
In every interview I’m asked what’s the most important quality a novelist has to have. It’s pretty obvious: talent. Now matter how much enthusiasm and effort you put into writing, if you totally lack literary talent you can forget about being a novelist. This is more of a prerequisite than a necessary quality. If you don’t have any fuel, even the best car won’t run.The problem with talent, though, is that in most cases the person involved can’t control its amount or quality. You might find the amount isn’t enough and you want to increase it, or you might try to be frugal and make it last longer, but in neither case do things work out that easily. Talent has a mind of its own and wells up when it wants to, and once it dries up, that’s it. Of course, certain poets and rock singers whose genius went out in a blaze of glory—people like Schubert and Mozart, whose dramatic early deaths turned them into legends—have a certain appeal, but for the vast majority of us this isn’t the model we follow. If I’m asked what the next most important quality is for a novelist, that’s easy too: focus—the ability to concentrate all your limited talents on whatever’s critical at the moment. Without that you can’t accomplish anything of value, while, if you can focus effectively, you’ll be able to compensate for an erratic talent or even a shortage of it. I generally concentrate on work for three or four hours every morning. I sit at my desk and focus totally on what I’m writing. I don’t see anything else, I don’t think about anything else. … After focus, the next most important thing for a novelist is, hands down, endurance. If you concentrate on writing three or four hours a day and feel tired after a week of this, you’re not going to be able to write a long work. What’s needed of the writer of fiction—at least one who hopes to write a novel—is the energy to focus every day for half a year, or a year, or two years. … Fortunately, these two disciplines—focus and endurance—are different from talent, since they can be acquired and sharpened through training. You’ll naturally learn both concentration and endurance when you sit down every day at your desk and train yourself to focus on one point. This is a lot like the training of muscles I wrote of a moment ago. You have to continually transmit the object of your focus to your entire body, and make sure it thoroughly assimilates the information necessary for you to write every single day and concentrate on the work at hand. And gradually you’ll expand the limits of what you’re able to do. Almost imperceptibly you’ll make the bar rise. This involves the same process as jogging every day to strengthen your muscles and develop a runner’s physique. Add a stimulus and keep it up. And repeat. Patience is a must in this process, but I guarantee results will come. In private correspondence the great mystery writer Raymond Chandler once confessed that even if he didn’t write anything, he made sure he sat down at his desk every single day and concentrated. I understand the purpose behind his doing this. This is the way Chandler gave himself the physical stamina a professional writer needs, quietly strengthening his willpower. This sort of daily training was indispensable to him. … Most of what I know about writing I’ve learned through running every day. These are practical, physical lessons. How much can I push myself? How much rest is appropriate—and how much is too much? How far can I take something and still keep it decent and consistent? When does it become narrow-minded and inflexible? How much should I be aware of the world outside, and how much should I focus on my inner world? To what extent should I be confident in my abilities, and when should I start doubting myself? I know that if I hadn’t become a long-distance runner when I became a novelist, my work would have been vastly different. How different? Hard to say. But something would definitely have been different.
Haruki Murakami (What I Talk About When I Talk About Running)
Mamaw also said that the best things in life die quickly, like the cherry blossom. Because something so beautiful can never last forever, shouldn’t last forever. It stays for a brief moment in time to remind us how precious life is, before fading away just as quickly as it came. She said that it teaches you more in its short life than anything that is forever by your side.” My throat began to close at the pain in her voice. She looked up at me. “Because nothing so perfect can last an eternity, can it? Like shooting stars. We see the usual stars above us every single night. Most people take them for granted, even forget they are there. But if a person sees a shooting star, they remember that moment forever, they even make a wish at its presence.” She took in a deep breath. “It shoots by so quickly that people savor the short time they have with it.” I felt a teardrop fall on our joined hands. I was confused, unsure why she was talking about such sad things. “Because something so completely perfect and special is destined to fade. Eventually, it has to blow away into the wind.” Poppy held up the cherry blossom that was still in her hand. “Like this flower.” She threw it into the air, just as a gust of wind came. The strong bluster carried the petals into the sky and away above the trees. It disappeared from our sight. “Poppy—” I went to speak, but she cut me off. “Maybe we’re like the cherry blossom, Rune. Like shooting stars. Maybe we loved too much too young and burned so bright that we had to fade out.” She pointed behind us, to the blossom grove. “Extreme beauty, quick death. We had this love long enough to teach us a lesson. To show us how capable of love we truly are.
Tillie Cole (A Thousand Boy Kisses)
Yet I also felt, for the first time, truly and sincerely pissed. It was enough already. Enough! I’d reached that point that comes in the life of most anxiety sufferers when, fed up by the constant waking torture, dejected and buckled but not yet crushed, they at last turn to their anxiety, to themselves, and say, “Listen here: Fuck you. Fuck you! I am sick and fucking tired of this bullshit. I refuse to let you win. I am not going to take it anymore. You are ruining my fucking life and you MUST FUCKING DIE!” Unfortunately, this approach rarely solves the problem. Anxiety doesn’t bend to absolutism. You have to take a subtler, more reasoned approach. But that doesn’t mean anger is totally unhelpful. Being pissed off is a strong cocktail for the will. It stiffens the spine. It strengthens resolve. It makes a person less willing to run away from the anxiety and more willing to walk into it, which you’re going to have to do, ultimately, if you don’t want to end up a complete agoraphobic. Anger breeds defiance, and defiance is inspiriting. It’s good to refuse to give in to anxiety. You just have to know how much you can take.
Daniel B. Smith (Monkey Mind: A Memoir of Anxiety)
…95 percent of political commentary, whether spoken or written, is now polluted by the very politics it’s supposed to be about. Meaning it’s become totally ideological and reductive: The writer/speaker has certain political convictions or affiliations, and proceeds to filter all reality and spin all assertion according to those convictions and loyalties. Everybody’s pissed off and exasperated and impervious to argument from any other side. Opposing viewpoints are not just incorrect but contemptible, corrupt, evil […] Political discourse is now a formulaic matter of preaching to one’s own choir and demonizing the opposition. Everything’s relentlessly black-and-whitened…. Since the truth is way, way more gray and complicated than any one ideology can capture, the whole thing seems to me not just stupid but stupefying… How can any of this possibly help me, the average citizen, deliberate about whom to choose to decide my country’s macroeconomic policy, or how even to conceive for myself what that policy’s outlines should be, or how to minimize the chances of North Korea nuking the DMZ and pulling us into a ghastly foreign war, or how to balance domestic security concerns with civil liberties? Questions like these are all massively complicated, and much of the complication is not sexy, and well over 90 percent of political commentary now simply abets the uncomplicatedly sexy delusion that one side is Right and Just and the other Wrong and Dangerous. Which is of course a pleasant delusion, in a way—as is the belief that every last person you’re in conflict with is an asshole—but it’s childish, and totally unconducive to hard thought, give and take, compromise, or the ability of grown-ups to function as any kind of community.
David Foster Wallace (David Foster Wallace: The Interview)
Sometimes I wonder how much of our suffering we allow or impose on ourselves simply in search of our worthiness to accept our own respect and appreciation. I’d written before some years ago that we often cause suffering in another so that we can then love them, as in, “You have suffered for me, so I can love you now.” The eventual shock of realizing the sacrifice made for you destroys the walls of self-righteousness and protection. The suffering sacrifice of another creates the willingness and capacity to do the same. Finally, love and respect (respect is part of the body of love) come from the recognition of something else already given up for them. Within the individual, you or me, a similar process takes place toward oneself. It is as if we know some- where that we are not worthy of our own love or respect until we have earned the right to it, and that is mainly through some kind of suffering. That suffering may be generic, as in a life lived in which tragedy after tragedy accumulate, or it may be specific, as in the constant sacrifice of other easier things for a being or vision. Or, perhaps more correctly, it is either consciously chosen or not.
Darrell Calkins (Re:)
To the enormous majority of persons who risk themselves in literature, not even the smallest measure of success can fall. They had better take to some other profession as quickly as may be, they are only making a sure thing of disappointment, only crowding the narrow gates of fortune and fame. Yet there are others to whom success, though easily within their reach, does not seem a thing to be grasped at. Of two such, the pathetic story may be read, in the Memoir of A Scotch Probationer, Mr. Thomas Davidson, who died young, an unplaced Minister of the United Presbyterian Church, in 1869. He died young, unaccepted by the world, unheard of, uncomplaining, soon after writing his latest song on the first grey hairs of the lady whom he loved. And she, Miss Alison Dunlop, died also, a year ago, leaving a little work newly published, Anent Old Edinburgh, in which is briefly told the story of her life. There can hardly be a true tale more brave and honourable, for those two were eminently qualified to shine, with a clear and modest radiance, in letters. Both had a touch of poetry, Mr. Davidson left a few genuine poems, both had humour, knowledge, patience, industry, and literary conscientiousness. No success came to them, they did not even seek it, though it was easily within the reach of their powers. Yet none can call them failures, leaving, as they did, the fragrance of honourable and uncomplaining lives, and such brief records of these as to delight, and console and encourage us all. They bequeath to us the spectacle of a real triumph far beyond the petty gains of money or of applause, the spectacle of lives made happy by literature, unvexed by notoriety, unfretted by envy. What we call success could never have yielded them so much, for the ways of authorship are dusty and stony, and the stones are only too handy for throwing at the few that, deservedly or undeservedly, make a name, and therewith about one-tenth of the wealth which is ungrudged to physicians, or barristers, or stock-brokers, or dentists, or electricians. If literature and occupation with letters were not its own reward, truly they who seem to succeed might envy those who fail. It is not wealth that they win, as fortunate men in other professions count wealth; it is not rank nor fashion that come to their call nor come to call on them. Their success is to be let dwell with their own fancies, or with the imaginations of others far greater than themselves; their success is this living in fantasy, a little remote from the hubbub and the contests of the world. At the best they will be vexed by curious eyes and idle tongues, at the best they will die not rich in this world’s goods, yet not unconsoled by the friendships which they win among men and women whose faces they will never see. They may well be content, and thrice content, with their lot, yet it is not a lot which should provoke envy, nor be coveted by ambition.
Andrew Lang (How to Fail in Literature: A Lecture)
It’s true that love can be hard on a person—the act of loving someone the way they need to be loved instead of how you want to love them, I mean. It takes a lot of effort to make someone else’s desires and troubles your own. You have to want it more than anything. And you have to want it whether they notice or not.” Her voice caught, and a tear was hastily wiped away. “Because that’s the nature of the thing: to care so much that it doesn’t matter if they ever reciprocate. If you really feel that way, you can’t hurt them. You just can’t. And when they hurt you, you forget it right away.
Kristina Meister (Cinderella Boy)
Here’s a simple definition of ideology: “A set of beliefs about the proper order of society and how it can be achieved.”8 And here’s the most basic of all ideological questions: Preserve the present order, or change it? At the French Assembly of 1789, the delegates who favored preservation sat on the right side of the chamber, while those who favored change sat on the left. The terms right and left have stood for conservatism and liberalism ever since. Political theorists since Marx had long assumed that people chose ideologies to further their self-interest. The rich and powerful want to preserve and conserve; the peasants and workers want to change things (or at least they would if their consciousness could be raised and they could see their self-interest properly, said the Marxists). But even though social class may once have been a good predictor of ideology, that link has been largely broken in modern times, when the rich go both ways (industrialists mostly right, tech billionaires mostly left) and so do the poor (rural poor mostly right, urban poor mostly left). And when political scientists looked into it, they found that self-interest does a remarkably poor job of predicting political attitudes.9 So for most of the late twentieth century, political scientists embraced blank-slate theories in which people soaked up the ideology of their parents or the TV programs they watched.10 Some political scientists even said that most people were so confused about political issues that they had no real ideology at all.11 But then came the studies of twins. In the 1980s, when scientists began analyzing large databases that allowed them to compare identical twins (who share all of their genes, plus, usually, their prenatal and childhood environments) to same-sex fraternal twins (who share half of their genes, plus their prenatal and childhood environments), they found that the identical twins were more similar on just about everything.12 And what’s more, identical twins reared in separate households (because of adoption) usually turn out to be very similar, whereas unrelated children reared together (because of adoption) rarely turn out similar to each other, or to their adoptive parents; they tend to be more similar to their genetic parents. Genes contribute, somehow, to just about every aspect of our personalities.13 We’re not just talking about IQ, mental illness, and basic personality traits such as shyness. We’re talking about the degree to which you like jazz, spicy foods, and abstract art; your likelihood of getting a divorce or dying in a car crash; your degree of religiosity, and your political orientation as an adult. Whether you end up on the right or the left of the political spectrum turns out to be just as heritable as most other traits: genetics explains between a third and a half of the variability among people on their political attitudes.14 Being raised in a liberal or conservative household accounts for much less. How can that be? How can there be a genetic basis for attitudes about nuclear power, progressive taxation, and foreign aid when these issues only emerged in the last century or two? And how can there be a genetic basis for ideology when people sometimes change their political parties as adults? To answer these questions it helps to return to the definition of innate that I gave in chapter 7. Innate does not mean unmalleable; it means organized in advance of experience. The genes guide the construction of the brain in the uterus, but that’s only the first draft, so to speak. The draft gets revised by childhood experiences. To understand the origins of ideology you have to take a developmental perspective, starting with the genes and ending with an adult voting for a particular candidate or joining a political protest. There are three major steps in the process. Step
Jonathan Haidt (The Righteous Mind: Why Good People are Divided by Politics and Religion)
Forgetting herself entirely, Pandora let her head loll back against Gabriel's shoulder. "What kind of glue does Ivo use?" she asked languidly. "Glue?" he echoed after a moment, his mouth close to her temple, grazing softly. "For his kites." "Ah." He paused while a wave retreated. "Joiner's glue, I believe." "That's not strong enough," Pandora said, relaxed and pensive. "He should use chrome glue." "Where would he find that?" One of his hands caressed her side gently. "A druggist can make it. One part acid chromate of lime to five parts gelatin." Amusement filtered through his voice. "Does your mind ever slow down, sweetheart?" "Not even for sleeping," she said. Gabriel steadied her against another wave. "How do you know so much about glue?" The agreeable trance began to fade as Pandora considered how to answer him. After her long hesitation, Gabriel tilted his head and gave her a questioning sideways glance. "The subject of glue is complicated, I gather." I'm going to have to tell him at some point, Pandora thought. It might as well be now. After taking a deep breath, she blurted out, "I design and construct board games. I've researched every possible kind of glue required for manufacturing them. Not just for the construction of the boxes, but the best kind to adhere lithographs to the boards and lids. I've registered a patent for the first game, and soon I intend to apply for two more." Gabriel absorbed the information in remarkably short order. "Have you considered selling the patents to a publisher?" "No, I want to make the games at my own factory. I have a production schedule. The first one will be out by Christmas. My brother-in-law, Mr. Winterborne, helped me to write a business plan. The market in board games is quite new, and he thinks my company will be successful." "I'm sure it will be. But a young woman in your position has no need of a livelihood." "I do if I want to be self-supporting." "Surely the safety of marriage is preferable to the burdens of being a business proprietor." Pandora turned to face him fully. "Not if 'safety' means being owned. As things stand now, I have the freedom to work and keep my earnings. But if I marry you, everything I have, including my company, would immediately become yours. You would have complete authority over me. Every shilling I made would go directly to you- it wouldn't even pass through my hands. I'd never be able to sign a contract, or hire employees, or buy property. In the eyes of the law, a husband and wife are one person, and that person is the husband. I can't bear the thought of it. It's why I never want to marry.
Lisa Kleypas (Devil in Spring (The Ravenels, #3))
Th-thurlow...?" His face,so very like her own, lit with pleasure. "Rycca,dear sister! I rejoice to find you well!" They hugged fiercely while Dragon looked on with as much contentment as he could have mustered had he personally arranged the reunion of the twins. "I don't understand," Rycca said when she could speak again.Her throat was very tight and tears gleamed in her eyes but she could not stop smiling. "Why are you here?" "I heard a wild rumor in Normandy, about you fleeing from the marriage arranged for you by the king himself," he said,with a chiding shake of his head. "Really,Rycca,what were you thinking? Dragon here an exemplary fellow.How could you have not wanted to marry him?" Over her brother's shoulder,Rycca sent the fine fellow in question a look that would have turned a lesser mann to ash. Dragon merely raised his eyebrows, the very image of wounded innocence. "It was a little more complicated than he may have explained to you." "Nonsense," Thurlow said with all the certainty of a very young man whose heart is nonetheless in the right place. "I love you dearly, sister,but we both know you can be a tad impulsive. Fortunately,I am assured Dragon will take excellent care of you." Rycca laughed then and reached out a hand to her husband,who took it with a grin.She she drew him to her,she said softly, "As I will care for him, brother.
Josie Litton (Come Back to Me (Viking & Saxon, #3))
We feel Divine Love entering us firstly through gentle, soft, humbling, kind and loving feelings, independent of any other person. This can be experienced as gently overwhelming as it increases, dependent on the depth of our desire for It. As we heal further, and more of our negative, repressed emotions and causal soul wounds are removed, the entering of Divine Love into our souls becomes stronger and stronger, bringing deep tears, powerful sensations and expansions in the heart and soul in immense gratitude, humility and feelings of great love and even more yearning for God. There may also be whole body tingling and sensations, crown chakra and heart explosions, feelings of being fully bathed in love and light, great feelings of humility, awe and wonder at the indescribable nature of God’s Love, and at how much He loves you. Receiving Divine Love can feel like being immersed in a bath of love all over, in every part of you, every cell. Deep peace, joy and waves of ecstasy, rapture and bliss arise and flow all over, and great humility washes over the soul. Immense love for God as the most wondrous, awe inspiring Soul that He Is is felt. A deepening into the essence of your pure soul occurs, along with the deep desire to give more of your soul to God. You feel deeply nurtured and embraced in God’s Arms. There is nothing better than resting and dropping into This. You feel the purity of His Love that is the most pleasurable feeling your soul will ever experience. Heat, pressure, inner and outer movements, pulsing, physical shifts and alignments can occur as you open and embody more Divine Love and the feeling of Blessedness this brings. This Blessedness also arises in felt feelings of forgiveness and mercy. Divine Love is Perfect in its trust and tenderness. We become more and more like a child; innocent, joyful, playful and beautiful as we were created to Be. This play is a pure and glorious sensation, wishing to share itself freely and touching all others. Receiving Divine Love can also become so powerful that we are brought to our knees in immense gratitude, rapture, pain and bliss, sometimes all at once. Receiving Divine Love in its fullness is overwhelming, and can even be physically painful in the heart as it inflows to such a degree that the heart actually stretches to accommodate It all. It is both rapturous and ecstatic, as the body may rock, sway and stretch as it receives more and more Divine Love.8 There is no better feeling in all universes than to receive this Greatest Love of all loves, the most pleasurable feelings a soul can experience as it has actually been designed this way, yet our physical bodies cannot take too much of it at one time! When I receive Divine Love in a rapturous way, it is blissful to the soul yet sometimes painful to the physical. Sometimes I have to stop praying as the body becomes too tired.
Padma Aon Prakasha (Dimensions of Love)
—You don’t like patriots? —I like the concept. It sounds good. To love the place where you’re from, nothing’s wrong with that, right? It’s all good. But is it love, really? Or is it pride? —I don’t understand. —Well, you can love something that’s flawed. It’s harder to be proud of it. Can you love something you’re not proud of? Much easier if you can do both. That’s where it gets messy because you need a reason. You have to have something to be proud of. Is it quality of life, education? How would you know? It has to be something much simpler. You, and people just like you. You start believing you’re better than everyone else. Other people, well, their culture is messed up, they have the wrong values, they’re not as good, not as smart, or they’re just plain evil. You can hate them or pretend you’re a good person and just be condescending. Everyone else is just as proud as you are for the exact same reasons, but they’re wrong, and you’re right. That’d be just fine—you can buy more tanks and go to war with the guy next door—but then you look around and you see those same people inside your country. More than that, they want the same rights, the same opportunities, as everyone else. Shit, they could be in charge! So you start taking things away from them, making sure they’ll stay where they belong, and let the real citizens make the decisions. You step on your own people, you keep them down, because you’re proud of your country, because you’re a patriot.
Sylvain Neuvel (Only Human (Themis Files, #3))
Only those who have lost as much as we have see the particularly nasty slice of smile on someone who thinks they’re winning when they say “Get over it.” This is the thing: If you have the option to not think about or even consider history, whether you learned it right or not, or whether it even deserves consideration, that’s how you know you’re on board the ship that serves hors d’oeuvres and fluffs your pillows, while others are out at sea, swimming or drowning, or clinging to little inflatable rafts that they have to take turns keeping inflated, people short of breath, who’ve never even heard of the words hors d’oeuvres or fluff. Then someone from up on the yacht says, “It’s too bad those people down there are lazy, and not as smart and able as we are up here, we who have built these strong, large, stylish boats ourselves, we who float the seven seas like kings.” And then someone else on board says something like, “But your father gave you this yacht, and these are his servants who brought the hors d’oeuvres.” At which point that person gets tossed overboard by a group of hired thugs who’d been hired by the father who owned the yacht, hired for the express purpose of removing any and all agitators on the yacht to keep them from making unnecessary waves, or even referencing the father or the yacht itself. Meanwhile, the man thrown overboard begs for his life, and the people on the small inflatable rafts can’t get to him soon enough, or they don’t even try, and the yacht’s speed and weight cause an undertow. Then in whispers, while the agitator gets sucked under the yacht, private agreements are made, precautions are measured out, and everyone quietly agrees to keep on quietly agreeing to the implied rule of law and to not think about what just happened. Soon, the father, who put these things in place, is only spoken of in the form of lore, stories told to children at night, under the stars, at which point there are suddenly several fathers, noble, wise forefathers. And the boat sails on unfettered. If you were fortunate enough to be born into a family whose ancestors directly benefited from genocide and/or slavery, maybe you think the more you don’t know, the more innocent you can stay, which is a good incentive to not find out, to not look too deep, to walk carefully around the sleeping tiger. Look no further than your last name. Follow it back and you might find your line paved with gold, or beset with traps.
Tommy Orange (There There)
If he noticed a female convict with a baby in her arms, he would approach, fondle the baby and snap his fingers at it to make it laugh. These things he did for many years, right up to his death; eventually he was famous all over Russia and all over Siberia, among the criminals, that is. One man who had been in Siberia told me that he himself had witnessed how the most hardened criminals remembered the general, and yet the general, when he visited the gangs of convicts, was rarely able to give more than twenty copecks to each man. It’s true that he wasn’t remembered with much affection, or even very seriously. Some ‘unfortunate wretch’, who had killed twelve people, or put six children to the knife solely for his own amusement (there were such men, it is said), would suddenly, apropos of nothing, perhaps only once in twenty years, sigh and say: ‘Well, and how’s the old general now, is he still alive?’ He would even, perhaps, smile as he said it – and that would be all. How can you know what seed had been cast into his soul for ever by this ‘old general’, whom he had not forgotten in twenty years? How can you know, Bakhmutov, what significance this communication between one personality and another may have in the fate of the personality that is communicated with?… I mean, we’re talking about the whole of a life, and a countless number of ramifications that are hidden from us. The very finest player of chess, the most acute of them, can only calculate a few moves ahead; one French player, who was able to calculate ten moves ahead, was described in the press as a miracle. But how many moves are here, and how much is there that is unknown to us? In sowing your seed, sowing your ‘charity’, your good deeds in whatever form, you give away a part of your personality and absorb part of another; a little more attention, and you are rewarded with knowledge, with the most unexpected discoveries. You will, at last, certainly view your deeds as a science; they will take over the whole of your life and may fill it. On the other hand, all your thoughts, all the seeds you have sown, which perhaps you have already forgotten, will take root and grow; the one who has received from you will give to another. And how can you know what part you will play in the future resolution of the fates of mankind? If this knowledge, and a whole lifetime of this work, exalts you, at last, to the point where you are able to sow a mighty seed, leave a mighty idea to the world as an inheritance, then…
Fyodor Dostoevsky (The Idiot)
There was one monk who never spoke up. His name was Vappa, and he seemed the most insecure about Gautama coming back to life. When he was taken aside and told that he would be enlightened, Vappa greeted the news with doubt. “If what you tell me is true, I would feel something, and I don’t,” he said. “When you dig a well, there is no sign of water until you reach it, only rocks and dirt to move out of the way. You have removed enough; soon the pure water will flow,” said Buddha. But instead of being reassured, Vappa threw himself on the ground, weeping and grasping Buddha’s feet. “It will never happen,” he moaned. “Don’t fill me with false hope.” “I’m not offering hope,” said Buddha. “Your karma brought you to me, along with the other four. I can see that you will soon be awake.” “Then why do I have so many impure thoughts?” asked Vappa, who was prickly and prone to outbursts of rage, so much so that the other monks were intimidated by him. “Don’t trust your thoughts,” said Buddha. “You can’t think yourself awake.” “I have stolen food when I was famished, and there were times when I stole away from my brothers and went to women,” said Vappa. “Don’t trust your actions. They belong to the body,” said Buddha. “Your body can’t wake you up.” Vappa remained miserable, his expression hardening the more Buddha spoke. “I should go away from here. You say there is no war between good and evil, but I feel it inside. I feel how good you are, and it only makes me feel worse.” Vappa’s anguish was so genuine that Buddha felt a twinge of temptation. He could reach out and take Vappa’s guilt from his shoulders with a touch of the hand. But making Vappa happy wasn’t the same as setting him free, and Buddha knew he couldn’t touch every person on earth. He said, “I can see that you are at war inside, Vappa. You must believe me when I say that you’ll never win.” Vappa hung his head lower. “I know that. So I must go?” “No, you misunderstand me,” Buddha said gently. “No one has ever won the war. Good opposes evil the way the summer sun opposes winter cold, the way light opposes darkness. They are built into the eternal scheme of Nature.” “But you won. You are good; I feel it,” said Vappa. “What you feel is the being I have inside, just as you have it,” said Buddha. “I did not conquer evil or embrace good. I detached myself from both.” “How?” “It wasn’t difficult. Once I admitted to myself that I would never become completely good or free from sin, something changed inside. I was no longer distracted by the war; my attention could go somewhere else. It went beyond my body, and I saw who I really am. I am not a warrior. I am not a prisoner of desire. Those things come and go. I asked myself: Who is watching the war? Who do I return to when pain is over, or when pleasure is over? Who is content simply to be? You too have felt the peace of simply being. Wake up to that, and you will join me in being free.” This lesson had an immense effect on Vappa, who made it his mission for the rest of his life to seek out the most miserable and hopeless people in society. He was convinced that Buddha had revealed a truth that every person could recognize: suffering is a fixed part of life. Fleeing from pain and running toward pleasure would never change that fact. Yet most people spent their whole lives avoiding pain and pursuing pleasure. To them, this was only natural, but in reality they were becoming deeply involved in a war they could never win.
Deepak Chopra (Buddha)
You mentioned how all marriages have Category 5 moments, and how you didn’t think your previous relationship would have made it through those moments. I think about that sometimes. About what could make one couple survive a Category 5 moment, but a different couple might not. I’ve thought about it enough to come up with a possible reason. Hurricanes aren’t a constant threat to coastal towns. There are more days with great weather and perfect beach days than there are hurricanes. Marriages are similar, in that there are a lot of great days with no arguments, when both people are filled with so much love for each other. But then you have the threatening-weather days. There might only be a few a year, but they can do enough damage that it takes years to repair. Some of the coastal towns will be prepared for the bad-weather days. They’ll save their best resources and most of their energy so that they’ll be stocked up and prepared for the aftermath. But some towns won’t be as prepared. They’ll put all their resources into the good weather days in hopes that the severe weather will never come. It’s the lazier choice and the choice with greater consequences. I think that’s the difference in the marriages that survive and the marriages that don’t. Some people think the focus in a marriage should be put on all the perfect days. They love as much and as hard as they can when everything is going right. But if a person gives all of themselves in the good times, hoping the bad times never come, there may not be enough resources or energy left to withstand those Category 5 moments. I know without a doubt that we’re going to have so many good moments. No matter what life throws at us, we’re going to make great memories together,
Colleen Hoover (All Your Perfects)
Does God get what God wants? That’s a good question. An interesting question. And it’s an important question that has given us much to discuss. But there’s a better question. One that we actually can answer. One that takes all of the speculation about the future, which no one has been to and returned with hard empirical evidence, and brings it back to one absolute we can depend on in the midst of all of this which turns out to be another question. It’s not, “Does God get what God wants?” but “Do we get what we want?” and the answer to that is a resounding, affirming, sure and certain yes. Yes, we get what we want, God is that loving. If we want isolation, despair, and the right to be our own god, God graciously grants us that option. If we insist on using our God-given power and strength to make the world in our own image, God allows us that freedom and we have that kind of license to do that. If we want nothing to do with light, love, hope, grace, and peace God respects that desire on our part and we are given a life free from any of those realities. The more we want nothing to do with what God is, the more distance and space is created. If we want nothing to do with love, we are given a reality free from love. If, however, we crave light, we’re drawn to truth, we’re desperate for grace, we’ve come to the end of our plots and schemes and we want someone else’s path, God gives us what we want. If we have this sense that we have wandered far from home and we want to return, God is there standing in the driveway arms open, ready to invite us in. If we thirst for Shalom and we long for the peace that transcends all understanding, God doesn’t just give, they are poured out on us lavishly, heaped until we are overwhelmed. It’s like a feast where the food and wine do not run out. These desires can start with the planting of an infinitesimally small seed in our heart, or a yearning for life to be better, or a gnawing sense that we are missing out, or an awareness that beyond the routine and grind of life there is something more, or the quiet hunch that this isn’t all there is. It often has it’s birth in the most unexpected ways, arising out of our need for something we know we do not have, for someone we know we are not. And to that, that impulse, craving, yearning, longing, desire God says, “Yes!”. Yes there is water for that thirst, food for that hunger, light for that darkness, relief for that burden. If we want hell, if we want heaven then they are ours. that’s how love works, it can’t be forced, manipulated, or coerced. It always leaves room for the other to decide. God says, “yes”, we can have what we want because love wins.
Rob Bell (Love Wins: A Book About Heaven, Hell, and the Fate of Every Person Who Ever Lived)
Suppose he really is in love. What about her? She never has anything good to say about him.” “Yet she blushes whenever he enters a room. And she stares at him a good deal. Or hadn’t you noticed that, either?” “As a matter of fact, I have.” Gazing up at him, she softened her tone. “But I do not want her hurt, Isaac. I must be sure she is desired for herself and not her fortune. Her siblings had a chance of not gaining their inheritance unless the others married, so I always knew that their mates loved them, but she…” She shook her head. “I had to find a way to remove her fortune from the equation.” “I still say you’re taking a big risk.” He glanced beyond her to where Celia was talking to the duke. “Do yo really think she’d be better off with Lyons?” But she doesn’t love him…If you’d just give her a chance- “I do not know,” Hetty said with a sigh. “I do not know anything anymore.” “Then you shouldn’t meddle. Because there’s another outcome you haven’t considered. If you try to manipulate matters to your satisfaction, she may balk entirely. Then you’ll find yourself in the sticky position of having to choose between disinheriting them all or backing down on your ultimatum. Personally, I think you should have given up that nonsense long ago, but I know only too well how stubborn you can be when you’ve got the bit between your teeth.” “Oh?” she said archly. “Have I been stubborn with you?” He gazed down at her. “You haven’t agreed to marry me yet.” Her heart flipped over in her chest. It was not the first time he had mentioned marriage, but she had refused to take him seriously. Until now. It was clear he would not be put off any longer. He looked solemnly in earnest. “Isaac…” “Are you worried that I am a fortune hunter?” “Do not be absurd.” “Because I’ve already told you that I’ll sign any marriage settlement you have your solicitor draw up. I don’t want your brewery or your vast fortune. I know it’s going to your grandchildren. I only want you.” The tender words made her sigh like a foolish girl. “I realize that. But why not merely continue as we have been?” His voice lowered. “Because I want to make you mine in every way.” A sweet shiver swept along her spine. “We do not need to marry for that.” “So all you want from me is an affair?” “No! But-“ “I want more than that. I want to go to sleep with you in my arms and wake with you in my bed. I want the right to be with you whenever I please, night or day.” His tone deepened. “I love you, Hetty. And when a man loves a woman, he wants to spend his life with her.” “But at our age, people will say-“ “Our age is an argument for marriage. We might not have much time left. Why not live it to the fullest, together, while we’re still in good health? Who cares about what people say? Life is too short to let other people dictate one’s choices.” She leaned heavily on his arm as they reached the steps leading up to the dais at the front of the ballroom. He did have a point. She had been balking at marrying him because she was sure people would think her a silly old fool. But then, she had always been out of step with everyone else. Why should this be any different? “I shall think about it,” she murmured as they headed to the center of the dais, where the family was gathering. “I suppose I’ll have to settle for that. For now.” He cast her a heated glance. “But later this evening, once we have the chance to be alone, I shall try more effective methods to persuade you. Because I’m not giving up on this. I can be as stubborn as you, my dear.” She bit back a smile. Thank God for that.
Sabrina Jeffries (A Lady Never Surrenders (Hellions of Halstead Hall, #5))
I think that we ought to be listening to our children a lot more often. Our children are living in the "here and now" and they know what to do about it. We can teach our children about where we have come from, but they can teach us about where we are all at, right now. Parents tend to come at their children with an arrogance merely due to the fact that they've been alive longer, but this is exactly where the disconnect takes place, this is exactly how you are going to not be able to connect with your children at the heart level. Being alive longer doesn't make you better at living. Read that again. I have many times turned to my son for guidance on LIVING in the here and now, and have become a vastly better person for it, as a result. We are not the only leaders here; we may be carrying a torch but our kids are carrying flashlights, and sometimes, flashlights are going to work so much better.
C. JoyBell C.
You have something to say to me, Cassidy, say it. Or shut the fuck up.” “All right,” Jules said. “I will.” He took a deep breath. Exhaled. “Okay, see, I, well, I love you. Very, very much, and . . .” Where to go from here . . .? Except, his plain-spoken words earned him not just a glance but Max’s sudden full and complete attention. Which was a little alarming. But it was the genuine concern in Max’s eyes that truly caught Jules off-guard. Max actually thought . . . Jules laughed his surprise. “Oh! No, not like that. I meant it, you know, in a totally platonic, non-gay way.” Jules saw comprehension and relief on Max’s face. The man was tired if he was letting such basic emotions show. “Sorry.” Max even smiled. “I just . . .” He let out a burst of air. “I mean, talk about making things even more complicated . . .” It was amazing. Max hadn’t recoiled in horror at the idea. His concern had been for Jules, about potentially hurting his tender feelings. And even now, he wasn’t trying to turn it all into a bad joke. And he claimed they weren’t friends. Jules felt his throat tighten. “You can’t know,” he told his friend quietly, “how much I appreciate your acceptance and respect.” “My father was born in India,” Max told him, “in 1930. His mother was white—American. His father was not just Indian, but lower caste. The intolerance he experienced both there and later, even in America, made him a . . . very bitter, very hard, very, very unhappy man.” He glanced at Jules again. “I know personality plays into it, and maybe you’re just stronger than he was, but . . . People get knocked down all the time. They can either stay there, wallow in it, or . . . Do what you’ve done—what you do. So yeah. I respect you more than you know.” Holy shit. Weeping was probably a bad idea, so Jules grabbed onto the alternative. He made a joke. “I wasn’t aware that you even had a father. I mean, rumors going around the office have you arriving via flying saucer—” “I would prefer not to listen to aimless chatter all night long,” Max interrupted him. “So if you’ve made your point . . .?” Ouch. “Okay,” Jules said. “I’m so not going to wallow in that. Because I do have a point. See, I said what I said because I thought I’d take the talk-to-an-eight-year-old approach with you. You know, tell you how much I love you and how great you are in part one of the speech—” “Speech.” Max echoed. “Because part two is heavily loaded with the silent-but-implied ‘you are such a freaking idiot.’” “Ah, Christ,” Max muttered. “So, I love you,” Jules said again, “in a totally buddy-movie way, and I just want to say that I also really love working for you, and I hope to God you’ll come back so I can work for you again. See, I love the fact that you’re my leader not because you were appointed by some suit, but because you earned very square inch of that gorgeous corner office. I love you because you’re not just smart, you’re open-minded—you’re willing to talk to people who have a different point of view, and when they speak, you’re willing to listen. Like right now, for instance. You’re listening, right?” “No.” “Liar.” Jules kept going. “You know, the fact that so many people would sell their grandmother to become a part of your team is not an accident. Sir, you’re beyond special—and your little speech to me before just clinched it. You scare us to death because we’re afraid we won’t be able to live up to your high standards. But your back is strong, you always somehow manage to carry us with you even when we falter. “Some people don’t see that; they don’t really get you—all they know is they would charge into hell without hesitation if you gave the order to go. But see, what I know is that you’d be right there, out in front—they’d have to run to keep up with you. You never flinch. You never hesitate. You never rest.
Suzanne Brockmann (Breaking Point (Troubleshooters, #9))
SPIEGEL: You have a lot of respect for the Dalai Lama, you even rewrote some Buddhist writings for him. Are you a religious person? Cleese: I certainly don't think much of organized religion. I am not committed to anything except the vague feeling that there is something more going on than the materialist reductionist people think. I think you can reduce suffering a little bit, like the Buddhists say, that is one of the few things I take seriously. But the idea that you can run this planet in a rational and kind way -- I think it's not possible. There will always be these sociopaths at the top -- selfish people, power-seekers who want to spend their whole lives seeking it. Robin Skynner, the psychiatrist that I wrote two books with, said to me that you could begin to enjoy life when you realized how bad the planet is, how hopeless everything is. I reached that point these last two or three years when I saw that our existence here is absolutely hopeless. I see the rich people have got a stranglehold on us. If somebody had said that to me when I was 20, I would have regarded him as a left-wing loony. SPIEGEL: You may not have been a left-wing loony, but you were happy to attack and ridicule the church. The "Life of Brian," the story of a young man in Judea who isn't Jesus Christ, but is nevertheless followed like a savior and crucified afterwards, was regarded as blasphemy when it was released in 1979. Cleese: Well there was a small number of people in country towns, all very conservative, who got upset and said, "You can't show the film." So people hired a coach and drove 15 miles to the next town and went to see the film there. But a lot of Christians said, "We got it, we know that the joke is not about religion, but about the way people follow religion." If Jesus saw the Spanish Inquisition I think he would have said, "What are you doing there?" SPIEGEL: These days Muslims and Islam are risky subjects. Do you think they are good issues for satire? Cleese: For sure. In 1982, Graham Chapman and I wrote a number of scenes for "The Meaning of Life" movie which had an ayatollah in them. This ayatollah was raging against all the evil inventions of the West, you know, like toilet paper. These scenes were never included in the film, although I thought they were much better than many other scenes that were included. And that's why I didn't do any more Python films: I didn't want to be outvoted any longer. But I wouldn't have made fun of the prophet. SPIEGEL: Why not? Cleese: How could you? How could you make fun of Jesus or Saint Francis of Assisi? They were wonderful human beings. People are only funny when they behave inappropriately, when they've been taken over by some egotistical emotion which they can't control and they become less human. SPIEGEL: Is there a difference between making fun of our side, so to speak, the Western, Christian side, and Islam? Cleese: There shouldn't be a difference. [SPIEGEL Interview with John Cleese: 'Satire Makes People Think' - 2015]
John Cleese
Treating Abuse Today 3(4) pp. 26-33 Freyd: The term "multiple personality" itself assumes that there is "single personality" and there is evidence that no one ever displays a single personality. TAT: The issue here is the extent of dissociation and amnesia and the extent to which these fragmentary aspects of personality can take executive control and control function. Sure, you and I have different parts to our mind, there's no doubt about that, but I don't lose time to mine they can't come out in the middle of a lecture and start acting 7 years old. I'm very much in the camp that says that we all are multi-minds, but the difference between you and me and a multiple is pretty tangible. Freyd: Those are clearly interesting questions, but that area and the clinical aspects of dissociation and multiple personalities is beyond anything the Foundation is actively... TAT: That's a real problem. Let me tell you why that's a problem. Many of the people that have been alleged to have "false memory syndrome" have diagnosed dissociative disorders. It seems to me the fact that you don't talk about dissociative disorders is a little dishonest, since many people whose lives have been impacted by this movement are MPD or have a dissociative disorder. To say, "Well, we ONLY know about repression but not about dissociation or multiple personalities" seems irresponsible. Freyd: Be that as it may, some of the scientific issues with memory are clear. So if we can just stick with some things for a moment; one is that memories are reconstructed and reinterpreted no matter how long ago or recent. TAT: You weigh the recollected testimony of an alleged perpetrator more than the alleged victim's. You're saying, basically, if the parents deny it, that's another notch for disbelief. Freyd: If it's denied, certainly one would want to check things. It would have to be one of many factors that are weighed -- and that's the problem with these issues -- they are not black and white, they're very complicated issues.
David L. Calof
One of Socrates' greatest and most enduring legacies, one for which he ultimately gave his life, was to fundamentally transform the meaning of 'Know yourself' by turning it inward. In other words, when Socrates advised his fellow Athenians --- the aristocrats, more often than not --- to examine their lives, to 'know themselves,' he was exhorting them to give far less time and attention to external circumstances like social status and wealth and to give much more time and attention to the things that matter most: internal goals, like wisdom, truth, and ethical character. As Socrates himself expressed the point in defense of his teachings: 'I will not cease from philosophy...and from exhorting you, and declaring the truth to every one of you I meet..."are you not embarassed by caring for money ...and fame and reputation, and not caring or taking thought for wisdom and truth and for your soul, and how to make it as good as possible?' I go about doing nothing else but urging you, young and old alike, not to care for your bodies or for money sooner than, or as much as, for you soul, and how to make it as good as you can.
Russell Gough (Character Is Destiny: The Value of Personal Ethics in Everyday Life)
From another corner of neuroscience, we’re learning about a neurotransmitter called dopamine. Though there are more than fifty neurotransmitters (that we know of), scientists studying substance problems have given dopamine much of their attention. The brain’s reward system and pleasure centers—the areas most impacted by substance use and compulsive behaviors—have a high concentration of dopamine. Some brains have more of it than others, and some people have a capacity to enjoy a range of experiences more than others, owing to a combination of genetics and environment. The thing about dopamine is that it makes us feel really good. We tend to want more of it. It is naturally generated through ordinary, pleasurable activities like eating and sex, and it is the brain’s way of rewarding us—or nature’s way of rewarding the brain—for activities necessary to our survival, individually or as a species. It is the “mechanism by which ‘instinct’ is manifest.” Our brains arrange for dopamine levels to rise in anticipation and spike during a pleasurable activity to make sure we do it again. It helps focus our attention on all the cues that contributed to our exposure to whatever felt good (these eventually become triggers to use, as we explain later). Drugs and alcohol (and certain behaviors) turn on a gushing fire hose of dopamine in the brain, and we feel good, even euphoric. Dopamine produced by these artificial means, however, throws our pleasure and reward systems out of whack immediately. Flooding the brain repeatedly with dopamine has long-term effects and creates what’s known as tolerance—when we lose our ability to produce or absorb our own dopamine and need more and more of it artificially just to feel okay. Specifically, the brain compensates for the flood of dopamine by decreasing its own production of it or by desensitizing itself to the neurotransmitter by reducing the number of dopamine receptors, or both. The brain is just trying to keep a balance. The problem with the brain’s reduction in natural dopamine production is that when you take the substance or behavior out of the picture, there’s not enough dopamine in the brain to make you feel good. Without enough dopamine, there is no interest or pleasure. Then not only does the brain lose the pleasure associated with using, it might not be able to enjoy a sunset or a back rub, either. A lowered level of dopamine, combined with people’s longing for the rush of dopamine they got from using substances, contributes to “craving” states. Cravings are a physiological process associated with the brain’s struggle to regain its normal dopamine balance, and they can influence a decision to keep using a substance even when a person is experiencing negative consequences that matter to him and a strong desire to change. Depending on the length of time and quantities a person has been using, these craving states can be quite uncomfortable and compelling. The dopamine system can and does recover, starting as soon as we stop flooding it. But it takes time, and in the time between shutting off the artificial supply of dopamine and the brain’s rebuilding its natural resources, people tend to feel worse (before they feel better). On a deep, instinctual level, their brains are telling them that by stopping using, something is missing; something is wrong. This is a huge factor in relapse, despite good intentions and effort to change. Knowing this can help you and your loved one make it across this gap in brain reward systems.
Jeffrey Foote (Beyond Addiction: How Science and Kindness Help People Change)
To speak of a communication failure implies a breakdown of some sort. Yet this does not accurately portray what occurs. In truth, communication difficulties arise not from breakdown but from the characteristics of the system itself. Despite promising beginnings in our intimate relationships, we tend over time to evolve a system of communication that suppresses rather than reveals information. Life is complicated, and confirming or disconfirming the well-being of a relationship takes effort. Once we are comfortably coupled, the intense, energy-consuming monitoring of courtship days is replaced by a simpler, more efficient method. Unable to witness our partners’ every activity or verify every nuance of meaning, we evolve a communication system based on trust. We gradually cease our attentive probing, relying instead on familiar cues and signals to stand as testament to the strength of the bond: the words “I love you,” holidays with the family, good sex, special times with shared friends, the routine exchange, “How was your day?” We take these signals as representative of the relationship and turn our monitoring energies elsewhere. ... Not only do the initiator’s negative signals tend to become incorporated into the existing routine, but, paradoxically, the initiator actively contributes to the impression that life goes on as usual. Even as they express their unhappiness, initiators work at emphasizing and maintaining the routine aspects of life with the other person, simultaneously giving signals that all is well. Unwilling to leave the relationship yet, they need to privately explore and evaluate the situation. The initiator thus contrives an appearance of participation,7 creating a protective cover that allows them to “return” if their alternative resources do not work out. Our ability to do this—to perform a role we are no longer enthusiastically committed to—is one of our acquired talents. In all our encounters, we present ourselves to others in much the same way as actors do, tailoring our performance to the role we are assigned in a particular setting.8 Thus, communication is always distorted. We only give up fragments of what really occurs within us during that specific moment of communication.9 Such fragments are always selected and arranged so that there is seldom a faithful presentation of our inner reality. It is transformed, reduced, redirected, recomposed.10 Once we get the role perfected, we are able to play it whether we are in the mood to go on stage or not, simply by reproducing the signals. What is true of all our encounters is, of course, true of intimate relationships. The nature of the intimate bond is especially hard to confirm or disconfirm.11 The signals produced by each partner, while acting out the partner role, tend to be interpreted by the other as the relationship.12 Because the costs of constantly checking out what the other person is feeling and doing are high, each partner is in a position to be duped and misled by the other.13 Thus, the initiator is able to keep up appearances that all is well by falsifying, tailoring, and manipulating signals to that effect. The normal routine can be used to attest to the presence of something that is not there. For example, initiators can continue the habit of saying, “I love you,” though the passion is gone. They can say, “I love you” and cover the fact that they feel disappointment or anger, or that they feel nothing at all. Or, they can say, “I love you” and mean, “I like you,” or, “We have been through a lot together,” or even “Today was a good day.
Diane Vaughan (Uncoupling: Turning Points in Intimate Relationships)
Here are my 12 Rules for Living: I go to bed and get up at the same time seven days per week (8 p.m. and 4 a.m., respectively). I stick to my diet, avoid caffeine after 1 p.m., and avoid alcohol within three hours of bedtime. I write for at least sixty minutes first thing every morning. I do not check email before noon and I do not talk on the phone unless it is a scheduled interview or conference call. I act polite and courteous, and I do not swear. I create a to-do list at the start & end of every workday and update my daily gratitude & achievement journal. I do not engage in confrontations with anyone, in-person or online. This is a waste of time and energy. If I have caused harm, I apologize and fix the situation. And then I take a deep breath, relax, breathe out, and re-focus my efforts back on my work and goals. I am guided by these two phrases: “Nothing matters.” – I can only work towards my big goals and my vision of helping others, while the opinions of others do not matter. “It will all be over soon.” – Everything, both good and bad, comes to an end. I must enjoy the good while it lasts, and persevere through the bad until I have beaten it. Everything that happens to me—good and bad—is my personal responsibility. I blame no one but myself. These are the choices I’ve made—this is the life I’m living. I accept the consequences of my actions. I will help ten million men and women transform their lives. I will not be the person I don’t want to be. I will not be petty, jealous, or envious, or give in to any other of those lazy emotions. I will not gossip or speak badly of others, no matter who I am with or what environment I am in. I will not be negative when it is easier to be positive. I will not hurt others when it is possible to help. I will know the temptations, situations and environments in life that I must avoid, and I will, in fact, avoid them, even if it means loosening relationships with others who “live” in those environments. It’s my life and that matters more than what other people think of me. “I will always keep the child within me alive.” – Frank McKinney. I will make time to laugh and play every day. “I will write with honesty and feeling.” – Ted Nicholas. The opinion of others does not matter. What matters is the number of people that I can help by sharing advice and encouragement in my writing. My 12 Rules have made me much happier
Craig Ballantyne (The Perfect Day Formula: How to Own the Day and Control Your Life)
to be open and straightforward about their needs for attention in a social setting. It is equally rare for members of a group in American culture to honestly and openly express needs that might be in conflict with that individual’s needs. This value of not just honestly but also openly fully revealing the true feelings and needs present in the group is vital for it’s members to feel emotional safe. It is also vital to keeping the group energy up and for giving the feedback that allows it’s members to know themselves, where they stand in relation to others and for spiritual/psychological growth. Usually group members will simply not object to an individual’s request to take the floor—but then act out in a passive-aggressive manner, by making noise or jokes, or looking at their watches. Sometimes they will take the even more violent and insidious action of going brain-dead while pasting a jack-o’-lantern smile on their faces. Often when someone asks to read something or play a song in a social setting, the response is a polite, lifeless “That would be nice.” In this case, N.I.C.E. means “No Integrity or Congruence Expressed” or “Not Into Communicating Emotion.” So while the sharer is exposing his or her vulnerable creation, others are talking, whispering to each other, or sitting looking like they are waiting for the dental assistant to tell them to come on back. No wonder it’s so scary to ask for people’s attention. In “nice” cultures, you are probably not going to get a straight, open answer. People let themselves be oppressed by someone’s request—and then blame that someone for not being psychic enough to know that “Yes” meant “No.” When were we ever taught to negotiate our needs in relation to a group of people? In a classroom? Never! The teacher is expected to take all the responsibility for controlling who gets heard, about what, and for how long. There is no real opportunity to learn how to nonviolently negotiate for the floor. The only way I was able to pirate away a little of the group’s attention in the school I attended was through adolescent antics like making myself fart to get a few giggles, or asking the teacher questions like, “Why do they call them hemorrhoids and not asteroids?” or “If a number two pencil is so popular, why is it still number two,” or “What is another word for thesaurus?” Some educational psychologists say that western culture schools are designed to socialize children into what is really a caste system disguised as a democracy. And in once sense it is probably good preparation for the lack of true democratic dynamics in our culture’s daily living. I can remember several bosses in my past reminding me “This is not a democracy, this is a job.” I remember many experiences in social groups, church groups, and volunteer organizations in which the person with the loudest voice, most shaming language, or outstanding skills for guilting others, controlled the direction of the group. Other times the pain and chaos of the group discussion becomes so great that people start begging for a tyrant to take charge. Many times people become so frustrated, confused and anxious that they would prefer the order that oppression brings to the struggle that goes on in groups without “democracy skills.” I have much different experiences in groups I work with in Europe and in certain intentional communities such as the Lost Valley Educational Center in Eugene, Oregon, where the majority of people have learned “democracy skills.” I can not remember one job, school, church group, volunteer organization or town meeting in mainstream America where “democracy skills” were taught or practiced.
Kelly Bryson (Don't Be Nice, Be Real)
One of the best-known studies of availability suggests that awareness of your own biases can contribute to peace in marriages, and probably in other joint projects. In a famous study, spouses were asked, “How large was your personal contribution to keeping the place tidy, in percentages?” They also answered similar questions about “taking out the garbage,” “initiating social engagements,” etc. Would the self-estimated contributions add up to 100%, or more, or less? As expected, the self-assessed contributions added up to more than 100%. The explanation is a simple availability bias: both spouses remember their own individual efforts and contributions much more clearly than those of the other, and the difference in availability leads to a difference in judged frequency. The bias is not necessarily self-serving: spouses also overestimated their contribution to causing quarrels, although to a smaller contribution to causing quarrels, although to a smaller extent than their contributions to more desirable outcomes. The same bias contributes to the common observation that many members of a collaborative team feel they have done more than their share and also feel that the others are not adequately grateful for their individual contributions
Daniel Kahneman
[…] if sophistication is the ability to put a smile on one's existential desperation, then the fear of a glossy sheen is actually the fear that surface equals depth. *** […] we wake up, we do something—anything—we go to sleep, and we repeat it about 22,000 more times, and then we die. *** Part of our new boredom is that our brain doesn't have any downtime. Even the smallest amount of time not being engaged creates a spooky sensatino that maybe you're on the wrong track. Reboot your computer and sit there waiting for it to do its thing, and within seventeen seconds you experience a small existential implosion when you remember that fifteen years ago life was nothing but this kind of moment. Gosh, mabe I'll read a book. Or go for a walk. Sorry. Probably not going to happen. Hey, is that the new trailer for Ex Machina? *** In the 1990s there was that expression, "Get a life!" You used to say it to people who were overly fixating on some sort of minutia or detail or thought thread, and by saying, "Get a life," you were trying to snap them out of their obsession and get them to join the rest of us who are still out in the world, taking walks and contemplating trees and birds. The expression made sense at the time, but it's been years since I've heard anyone use it anywhere. What did it mean then, "getting a life"? Did we all get one? Or maybe we've all not got lives anymore, and calling attention to one person without a life would put the spotlight on all of humanity and our now full-time pursuit of minutia, details and tangential idea threads. *** I don't buy lottery tickets because they spook me. If you buy a one-in-fifty-million chance to win a cash jackpoint, you're simultaneously tempting fate and adding all sorts of other bonus probabilities to your plance of existence: car crashes, random shootings, being struck by a meteorite. Why open a door that didn't need opening? *** I read something last week and it made sense to me: people want other people to do well in life but not too well. I've never won a raffle or prize or lottery draw, and I can't help but wonder how it must feel. One moment you're just plain old you, and then whaam, you're a winner and now everyone hates you and wants your money. It must be bittersweet. You hear all those stories about how big lottery winners' lives are ruined by winning, but that's not an urban legend. It's pretty much the norm. Be careful what you wish for and, while you're doing so, be sure to use the numbers between thirty-two and forty-nine.
Douglas Coupland (Bit Rot)
Oskar Schell: My father died at 9-11. After he died I wouldn't go into his room for a year because it was too hard and it made me want to cry. But one day, I put on heavy boots and went in his room anyway. I miss doing taekwondo with him because it always made me laugh. When I went into his closet, where his clothes and stuff were, I reached up to get his old camera. It spun around and dropped about a hundred stairs, and I broke a blue vase! Inside was a key in an envelope with black written on it and I knew that dad left something somewhere for me that the key opened and I had to find. So I take it to Walt, the locksmith. I give it to Stan, the doorman, who tells me keys can open anything. He gave me the phone book for all the five boroughs. I count there are 472 people with the last name black. There are 216 addresses. Some of the blacks live together, obviously. I calculated that if I go to 2 every Saturday plus holidays, minus my hamlet school plays, my minerals, coins, and comic convention, it's going to take me 3 years to go through all of them. But that's what I'm going to do! Go to every single person named black and find out what the key fits and see what dad needed me to find. I made the very best possible plan but using the last four digits of each phone number, I divide the people by zones. I had to tell my mother another lie, because she wouldn't understand how I need to go out and find what the key fits and help me make sense of things that don't even make sense like him being killed in the building by people that didn't even know him at all! And I see some people who don't speak English, who are hiding, one black said that she spoke to God. If she spoke to god how come she didn't tell him not to kill her son or not to let people fly planes into buildings and maybe she spoke to a different god than them! And I met a man who was a woman who a man who was a woman all at the same time and he didn't want to get hurt because he/she was scared that she/he was so different. And I still wonder if she/he ever beat up himself, but what does it matter? Thomas Schell: What would this place be if everyone had the same haircut? Oskar Schell: And I see Mr. Black who hasn't heard a sound in 24 years which I can understand because I miss dad's voice that much. Like when he would say, "are you up yet?" or... Thomas Schell: Let's go do something. Oskar Schell: And I see the twin brothers who paint together and there's a shed that has to be clue, but it's just a shed! Another black drew the same drawing of the same person over and over and over again! Forest black, the doorman, was a school teacher in Russia but now says his brain is dying! Seamus black who has a coin collection, but doesn't have enough money to eat everyday! You see olive black was a gate guard but didn't have the key to it which makes him feel like he's looking at a brick wall. And I feel like I'm looking at a brick wall because I tried the key in 148 different places, but the key didn't fit. And open anything it hasn't that dad needed me to find so I know that without him everything is going to be alright. Thomas Schell: Let's leave it there then. Oskar Schell: And I still feel scared every time I go into a strange place. I'm so scared I have to hold myself around my waist or I think I'll just break all apart! But I never forget what I heard him tell mom about the sixth borough. That if things were easy to find... Thomas Schell: ...they wouldn't be worth finding. Oskar Schell: And I'm so scared every time I leave home. Every time I hear a door open. And I don't know a single thing that I didn't know when I started! It's these times I miss my dad more than ever even if this whole thing is to stop missing him at all! It hurts too much. Sometimes I'm afraid I'll do something very bad.
Eric Roth
Can you do something for me? Can you take one moment, right now, and acknowledge how far you've come? Can you appreciate, completely, the lessons that all of your mistakes have already brought you and the wisdom you've collected from all of the pain that seemed so senseless at the time? Can you celebrate your journey and forget, just for a second, about the ever-changing destination? Because the truth is that there will never be a "perfect" time to appreciate yourself. There will not be a magical moment when everything is finally sorted out and you'll be naturally driven to give yourself some space to feel good about what you've been doing. Unless you make that space. Unless you create that moment. There will always be more growing to do. That is the beauty of life. There is always some new opportunity to do something new, to make something old better, to chuck out something useless, to transform something into something else. It's important to spend just as much time seizing these opportunities as appreciating the lessons they teach you and the person you become from seizing them. So do this for me, for yourself, today—celebrate. Just like you'd celebrate a birthday or a graduation, celebrate your endless journey of self-discovery. You deserve it. You need it. We all do.
Vironika Tugaleva
Nowadays, enormous importance is given to individual deaths, people make such a drama out of each person who dies, especially if they die a violent death or are murdered; although the subsequent grief or curse doesn't last very long: no one wears mourning any more and there's a reason for that, we're quick to weep but quicker still to forget. I'm talking about our countries, of course, it's not like that in other parts of the world, but what else can they do in a place where death is an everyday occurrence. Here, though, it's a big deal, at least at the moment it happens. So-and-so has died, how dreadful; such-and-such a number of people have been killed in a crash or blown to pieces, how terrible, how vile. The politicians have to rush around attending funerals and burials, taking care not to miss any-intense grief, or is it pride, requires them as ornaments, because they give no consolation nor can they, it's all to do with show, fuss, vanity and rank. The rank of the self-important, super-sensitive living. And yet, when you think about it, what right do we have, what is the point of complaining and making a tragedy out of something that happens to every living creature in order for it to become a dead creature? What is so terrible about something so supremely natural and ordinary? It happens in the best families, as you know, and has for centuries, and in the worst too, of course, at far more frequent intervals. What's more, it happens all the time and we know that perfectly well, even though we pretend to be surprised and frightened: count the dead who are mentioned on any TV news report, read the birth and death announcements in any newspaper, in a single city, Madrid, London, each list is a long one every day of the year; look at the obituaries, and although you'll find far fewer of them, because an infinitesimal minority are deemed to merit one, they're nevertheless there every morning. How many people die every weekend on the roads and how many have died in the innumerable battles that have been waged? The losses haven't always been published throughout history, in fact, almost never. People were more familiar with and more accepting of death, they accepted chance and luck, be it good or bad, they knew they were vulnerable to it at every moment; people came into the world and sometimes disappeared at once, that was normal, the infant mortality rate was extraordinarily high until eighty or even seventy years ago, as was death in childbirth, a woman might bid farewell to her child as soon as she saw its face, always assuming she had the will or the time to do so. Plagues were common and almost any illness could kill, illnesses we know nothing about now and whose names are unfamiliar; there were famines, endless wars, real wars that involved daily fighting, not sporadic engagements like now, and the generals didn't care about the losses, soldiers fell and that was that, they were only individuals to themselves, not even to their families, no family was spared the premature death of at least some of its members, that was the norm; those in power would look grim-faced, then carry out another levy, recruit more troops and send them to the front to continue dying in battle, and almost no one complained. People expected death, Jack, there wasn't so much panic about it, it was neither an insuperable calamity nor a terrible injustice; it was something that could happen and often did. We've become very soft, very thin-skinned, we think we should last forever. We ought to be accustomed to the temporary nature of things, but we're not. We insist on not being temporary, which is why it's so easy to frighten us, as you've seen, all one has to do is unsheathe a sword. And we're bound to be cowed when confronted by those who still see death, their own or other people's, as part and parcel of their job, as all in a day's work. When confronted by terrorists, for example, or by drug barons or multinational mafia men.
Javier Marías (Your Face Tomorrow: Fever and Spear / Dance and Dream / Poison, Shadow, and Farewell (Your face tomorrow, #1-3))
What we are talking about is a kind of super-reflex, a fundamental physiological ability of which we are barely aware. And like all specialized human trains, some people have much more mastery over this reflex than others. Part of what it means to have a powerful or persuasive personality, then, is that you can draw others into your own rhythms and dictate the terms of the interaction. In some studies, students who have a high degree of synchrony with their teachers are happier, more enthused, interested, and easygoing. What I felt with Gau was that I was being seduced, not in the sexual sense, of course, but in a global way, that our conversation was being conducted on his terms, not mine. I felt I was becoming synchronized with him. "Skilled musicians know this, and good speakers," says Joseph Cappella, who teaches at the Annenberg School of Communication at the University of Pennsylvania. "They know when the crowds are with them, literally in synchrony with them, in movements and nods and stillness in moments of attention." It is a strange thing to admit, because I didn't want to be drawn in. I was on guard against it. But the essence of Salesmen is that, on some level, they cannot be resisted. "Tom can build a level of trust and rapport in five to ten minutes that most people will take half an hour to do," Moine says to Gau.
Malcolm Gladwell (The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference)
What we are talking about is a kind of super-reflex, a fundamental physiological ability of which we are barely aware. And like all specialized human traits, some people have much more mastery over this reflex than others. Part of what it means to have a powerful or persuasive personality, then, is that you can draw others into your own rhythms and dictate the terms of the interaction. In some studies, students who have a high degree of synchrony with their teachers are happier, more enthused, interested, and easygoing. What I felt with Gau was that I was being seduced, not in the sexual sense, of course, but in a global way, that our conversation was being conducted on his terms, not mine. I felt I was becoming synchronized with him. "Skilled musicians know this, and good speakers," says Joseph Cappella, who teaches at the Annenberg School of Communication at the University of Pennsylvania. "They know when the crowds are with them, literally in synchrony with them, in movements and nods and stillness in moments of attention." It is a strange thing to admit, because I didn't want to be drawn in. I was on guard against it. But the essence of Salesmen is that, on some level, they cannot be resisted. "Tom can build a level of trust and rapport in five to ten minutes that most people will take half an hour to do," Moine says to Gau.
Malcolm Gladwell (The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference)
LEADING LESSONS Rejection is an illusion. It’s all in your head. It was never about Rachael; it was always about me. So maybe I didn’t fit her picture of the perfect dance partner. We were no longer a match--so what? At the time, the rejection hurt like hell and I threw myself a big ol’ pity party. But here’s the thing: No one can reject you. No one can dump you. It’s just a decision, and maybe you don’t like it. I was the one believing I was a victim instead of realizing how blessed my life was. If you’re feeling rejected, you’re looking at things all wrong. Just because someone says no, just because someone chooses another person over you, doesn’t mean you’re not good enough. There isn’t one successful person out there who hasn’t racked up his or her share of rejection. That said, no one likes hearing no. But what are you going to do with that no? Are you going to let it destroy your self-esteem? Or are you going to keep pushing forward, following your passion? Dancers deal with a lot of rejection--I know this now, and I see the rejections as part of my journey. Keep doing what you’re doing and do it well--don’t worry about pleasing anyone but yourself. Sometimes that no can be a wake-up call, a chance for you to reassess, refocus, reboot. I’m grateful Rachael and her family gave me my walking papers. That rejection opened me up to so much more.
Derek Hough (Taking the Lead: Lessons from a Life in Motion)
What’s the best thing you’ve done in your work and career? In business decision-making, certainly one of your highlights was licensing your computer operating system to IBM for almost no money, provided you could retain the right to license the system to other computer manufacturers as well. IBM was happy to agree because, after all, nobody would possibly want to compete with the most powerful company in the world, right? With that one decision, your system and your company became dominant throughout the world, and you, Bill Gates, were on your way to a net worth of more than $60 billion. Or maybe you’d like to look at your greatest career achievement from a different angle. Instead of focusing on the decision that helped you make so much money, maybe you’d like to look at the decision to give so much of it away. After all, no other person in history has become a philanthropist on the scale of Bill Gates. Nations in Africa and Asia are receiving billions of dollars in medical and educational support. This may not be as well publicized as your big house on Lake Washington with its digitalized works of art, but it’s certainly something to be proud of. Determining your greatest career achievement is a personal decision. It can be something obvious or something subtle. But it should make you proud of yourself when you think of it. So take a moment, then make your choice.
Dale Carnegie (Make Yourself Unforgettable: How to Become the Person Everyone Remembers and No One Can Resist)
I have arrived at the conviction that no mere institutions, however wise, and however much thought may have been required to organise and arrange them, can attach class to class as they should be attached, unless the working of such institutions bring the individuals of the different classes into actual personal contact. Such intercourse is the very breath of life. A working man can hardly be made to feel and know how much his employer may have laboured in his study at plans for the benefit of his workpeople. A complete plan emerges like a piece of machinery, apparently fitted for every emergency. But the hands accept it as they do machinery, without understanding the intense mental labour and forethought required to bring it to such perfection. But I would take an idea, the working out of which would necessitate personal intercourse; it might not go well at first, but at every hitch interest would be felt by an increasing number of men, and at last its success in working come to be desired by all, as all had borne a part in the formation of the plan; and even then I am sure that it would lose its vitality, cease to be living, as soon as it was no longer carried on by that sort of common interest which invariably makes people find means and ways of seeing each other, and becoming acquainted with each other's characters and person, and even tricks of temper and modes of speech. We should understand each other better, and I'll venture to say we should like each other more.
Elizabeth Gaskell (North and South)
Once you are in a relationship you start taking each other for granted—that’s what destroys all love affairs. The woman thinks she knows the man, the man thinks he knows the woman. Nobody knows either! It is impossible to know the other, the other remains a mystery. And to take the other for granted is insulting, disrespectful. To think that you know your wife is very, very ungrateful. How can you know the woman? How can you know the man? They are processes, they are not things. The woman that you knew yesterday is not there today. So much water has gone down the Ganges; she is somebody else, totally different. Relate again, start again, don’t take it for granted. And the man that you slept with last night, look at his face again in the morning. He is no more the same person, so much has changed. So much, incalculably much has changed. That is the difference between a thing and a person. The furniture in the room is the same, but the man and the woman, they are no more the same. Explore again, start again. That’s what I mean by relating. Relating means you are always starting, you are continuously trying to become acquainted. Again and again, you are introducing yourself to each other. You are trying to see the many facets of the other’s personality. You are trying to penetrate deeper and deeper into his realm of inner feelings, into the deep recesses of his being. You are trying to unravel a mystery that cannot be unraveled. That is the joy of love: the exploration of consciousness.
Osho (Love, Freedom, Aloneness: The Koan of Relationships)
Wittgenstein came to believe that a great many philosophical puzzles arise out of people misusing language in this way. Take, for example, the statement ‘I have a pain’, which is grammatically akin to ‘I have a hat’. This similarity might mislead us into thinking that pains, or ‘experiences’ in general, are things we have in the same way that we have hats. But it would be strange to say ‘Here, take my pain’. And though it would make sense to say ‘Is this your hat or mine?’, it would sound odd to ask ‘Is this your pain or mine?’ Perhaps there are several people in a room and a pain floating around in it; and as each person in turn doubles up in agony, we exclaim: ‘Ah, now he’s having it!’ This sounds merely silly; but in fact it has some fairly momentous implications. Wittgenstein is able to disentangle the grammar of ‘I have a hat’ from ‘I have a pain’ not only in a way that throws light on the use of personal pronouns like ‘I’ and ‘he’, but in ways which undermine the long-standing assumption that my experiences are a kind of private property. In fact, they seem even more like private property than my hat, since I can give away my hat, but not my pain. Wittgenstein shows us how grammar deceives us into thinking this way, and his case has radical, even politically radical, consequences. The task of the philosopher, Wittgenstein thought, was not so much to resolve these inquiries as to dissolve them – to show that they spring from confusing one kind of ‘language game’, as he called it, with another.
Terry Eagleton (The Meaning of Life)
Subject Line:  This means a lot… Or Would love to get your opinion…   Email Text:  Dear friends, family, and colleagues:    Thank you so much for reading this email. This isn’t an easy one for me to send, but it is extremely important to me, so I sincerely appreciate you investing your valuable time reading (and hopefully responding to) it. This email is going out to only a select group of people. Each of you knows me well, and I’m hoping will give me honest feedback about my strengths and most importantly, my weaknesses (aka “areas of improvement.”) I’ve never done anything like this before, but I feel that for me grow and improve as a person, I need to get a more accurate picture of how I’m showing up to the people that matter most to me. In order to become the person I need to be to create the life and contribute to others at the levels that I want, I need your feedback. So, all I’m asking is that you take just a few minutes to email me back with what you honestly think are my top 2-3 “areas of improvement.” If it will make you feel better to also list my top 2-3 “strengths” (I’m sure it will make me feel better J), you are definitely welcome to. That’s it. And please don’t sugarcoat it or hold back anything. I will not be offended by anything that you share. In fact, the more “brutally” honest you are, the more leverage it will give me to make positive changes in my life. Thank you again, and if there is anything else I can do to add value to your life, please let me know. With sincere gratitude,   Your Name
Hal Elrod (The Miracle Morning: The Not-So-Obvious Secret Guaranteed to Transform Your Life: Before 8AM)
Can't you just let it go? Move on?" His face darkened. His eyes glared in response and he was silent a long time while his jaw worked over a toothpick. She'd used the same line that the prophet and his representatives had been using for years. Even if these things did happen, there is no point in being bitter. You should forgive and forget and let bygones be bygones. Kind of galling, considering the insistence upon forgiveness was being made by the people who had done the hurting and done nothing to make up for it. But then, that was the standard 'blame the victim' abuser mentally, and to be expected. Gideon seemed to work through this slap in the face and let it slide. He said, "For a while I thought maybe, you know, if I could talk to the people responsible. If I could show them how difficult life has been because of them, that maybe they would care. I don't know. I thought maybe if they apologized, it would be so much easier to forget this shit. You know? To do what they say and 'let it go'. But nobody will take any personal responsibility. My own parents have nothing to offer but a bunch of whiny excuses. They try to convince me that my life wasn't as bad as I remember it." "Fuck that," he said, "They weren't even there. They don't even know what went on with me. I just..." He paused and pulled his fingers through his hair. "Christ," he said. He paused again, eyes to the sky, and then back to her. "Even the people who never personally raised a hand against me still propped up the regime that made it happen. They stood by and allowed it. Played a part. All of them. Every single one was a participant. Either directly or by looking away. Institutionally, doctrinally, they abused us. Sent us into the streets to beg, denied us an education, had us beaten, starved, exorcised, and separated from our parents. They broke up our families, gave our bodies to perverts, and stole our future. And then they turn around and say we're supposed to just forget it happened and move on from it. If instead we bring up the past, then they'll call us liars. Say we're exaggerating or making it up completely. Why the hell would be make any of this shit up? What's the point in that? To make our lives seem worse than they were? Not that I would, but do you have any idea how much exaggeration it would take for the average person to even begin to grasp how fucking miserable it was? And then, if they ever do admit to any of it, they say that 'mistakes were made'. " "Mistakes." he said. He was leaning forward again, punctuating the air with his finger. "Michael, they commit crimes against children. You know, those things people in society go to jail for when they're caught. And then to the public they do what they always do. Deny. Deny. Deny. And we're left more raped than ever. Victimized first by what they did, and again by their refusal to admit that it happened. They paint us as bitter apostates and liars to a world that not only doesn't give a shit, but also couldn't possibly understand even if it did." "I do," Munroe said. And Gideon stopped.
Taylor Stevens (The Innocent (Vanessa Michael Munroe, #2))
One of the central elements of resilience, Bonanno has found, is perception: Do you conceptualize an event as traumatic, or as an opportunity to learn and grow? “Events are not traumatic until we experience them as traumatic,” Bonanno told me, in December. “To call something a ‘traumatic event’ belies that fact.” He has coined a different term: PTE, or potentially traumatic event, which he argues is more accurate. The theory is straightforward. Every frightening event, no matter how negative it might seem from the sidelines, has the potential to be traumatic or not to the person experiencing it. Take something as terrible as the surprising death of a close friend: you might be sad, but if you can find a way to construe that event as filled with meaning—perhaps it leads to greater awareness of a certain disease, say, or to closer ties with the community—then it may not be seen as a trauma. The experience isn’t inherent in the event; it resides in the event’s psychological construal. It’s for this reason, Bonanno told me, that “stressful” or “traumatic” events in and of themselves don’t have much predictive power when it comes to life outcomes. “The prospective epidemiological data shows that exposure to potentially traumatic events does not predict later functioning,” he said. “It’s only predictive if there’s a negative response.” In other words, living through adversity, be it endemic to your environment or an acute negative event, doesn’t guarantee that you’ll suffer going forward. What matters is whether that adversity becomes traumatizing.
Maria Konnikova
If, by the virtue of charity or the circumstance of desperation, you ever chance to spend a little time around a Substance-recovery halfway facility like Enfield MA’s state-funded Ennet House, you will acquire many exotic new facts…That certain persons simply will not like you no matter what you do. That sleeping can be a form of emotional escape and can with sustained effort be abused. That purposeful sleep-deprivation can also be an abusable escape. That you do not have to like a person in order to learn from him/her/it. That loneliness is not a function of solitude. That logical validity is not a guarantee of truth. That it takes effort to pay attention to any one stimulus for more than a few seconds. That boring activities become, perversely, much less boring if you concentrate intently on them. That if enough people in a silent room are drinking coffee it is possible to make out the sound of steam coming off the coffee. That sometimes human beings have to just sit in one place and, like, hurt. That you will become way less concerned with what other people think of you when you realize how seldom they do. That there is such a thing as raw, unalloyed, agendaless kindness. That it is possible to fall asleep during an anxiety attack. That concentrating intently on anything is very hard work. That 99% of compulsive thinkers’ thinking is about themselves; that 99% of this self-directed thinking consists of imagining and then getting ready for things that are going to happen to them; and then, weirdly, that if they stop to think about it, that 100% of the things they spend 99% of their time and energy imagining and trying to prepare for all the contingencies and consequences of are never good. In short that 99% of the head’s thinking activity consists of trying to scare the everliving shit out of itself. That it is possible to make rather tasty poached eggs in a microwave oven. That some people’s moms never taught them to cover up or turn away when they sneeze. That the people to be the most frightened of are the people who are the most frightened. That it takes great personal courage to let yourself appear weak. That no single, individual moment is in and of itself unendurable. That other people can often see things about you that you yourself cannot see, even if those people are stupid. That having a lot of money does not immunize people from suffering or fear. That trying to dance sober is a whole different kettle of fish. That different people have radically different ideas of basic personal hygiene. That, perversely, it is often more fun to want something than to have it. That if you do something nice for somebody in secret, anonymously, without letting the person you did it for know it was you or anybody else know what it was you did or in any way or form trying to get credit for it, it’s almost its own form of intoxicating buzz. That anonymous generosity, too, can be abused. That it is permissible to want. That everybody is identical in their unspoken belief that way deep down they are different from everyone else. That this isn’t necessarily perverse. That there might not be angels, but there are people who might as well be angels.
David Foster Wallace
#14: SNAP OUT OF IT! One of the primary reasons for our unhappiness and discomfort is our attack thoughts. All day long, without even realizing it, we’re attacking ourselves and others. Attacks don’t have to be massive to inflict real damage—each small attack, from a negative thought about ourselves to a cold comment toward another person, adds up. Attack breeds attack. Attacking others in our mind or in our actions directly harms us. Our attack thoughts and actions are particularly dangerous because they can be so subtle and insidious that we might not realize how much they’ve taken over our minds. But as fiendish as they are, they’re surprisingly easy to let go of. All it takes is an ordinary rubber band. One day—today—wear a rubber band on your wrist. Whenever you notice an attack thought arise, flick your rubber band against your arm. Does this seem jarring? Good! It’s exactly what you need to literally snap yourself out of your unconscious attack thoughts. Once you’ve snapped out of the attack cycle, it’s time to clean up your thoughts. Use this exercise based on lesson 23 of A Course in Miracles: “I can escape from the world I see by giving up attack thoughts.” The moment you snap the rubber band, witness your attack thought and say to yourself: I can escape from the world I see by giving up attack thoughts about________. You can fill in the blank with whatever you’re attacking, whether it’s broad or very specific. Practice this exercise throughout the day. Notice your attack thought, snap out of it with your rubber band, and then use the Course message as a reminder that you can think your way out in an instant. Miracle
Gabrielle Bernstein (Miracles Now: 108 Life-Changing Tools for Less Stress, More Flow, and Finding Your True Purpose)
Suppose that you need to hire a sales representative for your firm. If you are serious about hiring the best possible person for the job, this is what you should do. First, select a few traits that are prerequisites for success in this position (technical proficiency, engaging personality, reliability, and so on). Don’t overdo it—six dimensions is a good number. The traits you choose should be as independent as possible from each other, and you should feel that you can assess them reliably by asking a few factual questions. Next, make a list of those questions for each trait and think about how you will score it, say on a 1–5 scale. You should have an idea of what you will call “very weak” or “very strong.” These preparations should take you half an hour or so, a small investment that can make a significant difference in the quality of the people you hire. To avoid halo effects, you must collect the information on one trait at a time, scoring each before you move on to the next one. Do not skip around. To evaluate each candidate, add up the six scores. Because you are in charge of the final decision, you should not do a “close your eyes.” Firmly resolve that you will hire the candidate whose final score is the highest, even if there is another one whom you like better—try to resist your wish to invent broken legs to change the ranking. A vast amount of research offers a promise: you are much more likely to find the best candidate if you use this procedure than if you do what people normally do in such situations, which is to go into the interview unprepared and to make choices by an overall intuitive judgment such as “I looked into his eyes and liked what I saw.
Daniel Kahneman (Thinking, Fast and Slow)
I sit down across from her at the table and put the vial of memory serum between us. “I came to make you drink this,” I say. She looks at the vial, and I think I see tears in her eyes, but it could just be the light. “I thought it was the only way to prevent total destruction,” I say. “I know that Marcus and Johanna and their people are going to attack, and I know that you will do whatever it takes to stop them, including using that death serum you possess to its best advantage.” I tilt my head. “Am I wrong?” “No,” she says. “The factions are evil. They cannot be restored. I would sooner see us all destroyed.” Her hand squeezes the edge of the table, the knuckles pale. “The reason the factions were evil is because there was no way out of them,” I say. “They gave us the illusion of choice without actually giving us a choice. That’s the same thing you’re doing here, by abolishing them. You’re saying, go make choices. But make sure they aren’t factions or I’ll grind you to bits!” “If you thought that, why didn’t you tell me?” she says, her voice louder and her eyes avoiding mine, avoiding me. “Tell me, instead of betraying me?” “Because I’m afraid of you!” The words burst out, and I regret them but I’m also glad they’re there, glad that before I ask her to give up her identity, I can at least be honest with her. “You…you remind me of him!” “Don’t you dare.” She clenches her hands into fists and almost spits at me, “Don’t you dare.” “I don’t care if you don’t want to hear it,” I say, coming to my feet. “He was a tyrant in our house and now you’re a tyrant in this city, and you can’t even see that it’s the same!” “So that’s why you brought this,” she says, and she wraps her hand around the vial, holding it up to look at it. “Because you think this is the only way to mend things.” “I…” I am about to say that it’s the easiest way, the best way, maybe the only way that I can trust her. If I erase her memories, I can create for myself a new mother, but. But she is more than my mother. She is a person in her own right, and she does not belong to me. I do not get to choose what she becomes just because I can’t deal with who she is. “No,” I say. “No, I came to give you a choice.” I feel suddenly terrified, my hands numb, my heart beating fast-- “I thought about going to see Marcus tonight, but I didn’t.” I swallow hard. “I came to see you instead because…because I think there’s a hope of reconciliation between us. Not now, not soon, but someday. And with him there’s no hope, there’s no reconciliation possible.” She stares at me, her eyes fierce but welling up with tears. “It’s not fair for me to give you this choice,” I say. “But I have to. You can lead the factionless, you can fight the Allegiant, but you’ll have to do it without me, forever. Or you can let this crusade go, and…and you’ll have your son back.” It’s a feeble offer and I know it, which is why I’m afraid--afraid that she will refuse to choose, that she will choose power over me, that she will call me a ridiculous child, which is what I am. I am a child. I am two feet tall and asking her how much she loves me. Evelyn’s eyes, dark as wet earth, search mine for a long time. Then she reaches across the table and pulls me fiercely into her arms, which form a wire cage around me, surprisingly strong. “Let them have the city and everything in it,” she says into my hair. I can’t move, can’t speak. She chose me. She chose me.
Veronica Roth (Allegiant (Divergent, #3))
A faint movement distracted me as Oria elbow-crawled up to my side. Her profile was outlined by the light from those faraway torches as she looked down on the castle below. “I’m sorry, Oria,” I breathed. She did not turn her head. “For what?” “All our plans when we were growing up. All the fine things we’d have had after we won. Making you a duchess--“ She grunted softly. “That was no more than dream-weaving. I don’t want to be a duchess. Never did. Well, after my fourteenth year, I didn’t. That was you, wanting it for me.” For the first time a flicker of emotion broke briefly through the aching numbness around my heart. “But when we talked…” She rested her chin on her tightly folded fists, staring down at the castle. I could see tiny reflections of the ruddy torches in her eyes, so steady and unblinking was her gaze. “The only way for me to be a noble is to become a scribe or a herald and work my way up through the government service ranks, and I don’t want to write others’ things, or to take records, and I don’t want to get mixed up with governments--with the kind of people who want to rule over others. Seems like the wrong people get killed, the nice ones. I want…” She sighed and stopped. “Tell me,” I said. “We can dream-weave once more.” “I want to run a house. You can control that--make life comfortable, and pleasant, and beautiful. My dream was always that, or partly that…” Once again she stopped, and this time the gleam of the torches in her eyes was liquid. A quick motion with her finger, a lowering of her long lashes, and the gleam was gone. “Go on,” I said. She dropped her head down. “You never saw it, Mel. You’re just what Mama calls you, a summer flower, a late bloomer.” “I don’t understand.” She breathed a laugh. “I know. That’s just it! Well, it’s all nothing now, so why not admit what a henwit I’ve been? There’s another way to be an aristo, and that’s marriage. I never cared about status so much as I did about the idea of marriage. With a specific person.” “Marriage,” I repeated, and then a blindingly new idea struck me. “You mean--Branaric?” She shrugged. “I gave it up three summers ago, when I realized that our living like sisters all our lives meant he saw me as one.” “Oh, Ria.” Pain squeezed my heart. “How I wish our lives had gone differently! If Bran were alive--“ “It still wouldn’t have happened,” she murmured. “And I’ve already made my peace with it. That’s an old dream. I’m here now because Debegri will do his best to kill our new dreams.” She nudged me with her elbow. “Truth is, I rather liked being heart-free last summer, except you didn’t notice that, either--you’ve never tried flirting, much less twoing. You just dance the dances to be dancing, you don’t watch the boys watch you when we dance. You don’t watch them dance.” She chuckled softly. “You don’t even peek at the boys’ side at the bathhouse.” I reached back in memory, realized how much I had neglected to notice. Not that it had mattered. My cold lips stretched into a smile. “The boys never looked at me, anyway. Not when they had you to look at.” “Some of that is who you are,” she responded. “They never forgot that. But the rest is that you never cared when they did look at you.” And now it’s too late. But I didn’t say that. Instead, I turned my eyes to those four figures in their steady pacing and let my mind drift back to old memories, summer memories. How much of life had I missed while dedicating myself to Papa’s war?
Sherwood Smith (Crown Duel (Crown & Court, #1))
Important: Be sure to put the outgoing email addresses in the BCC field of the email, so that each recipient doesn’t see everyone else you’re sending it to. (Or, you can copy and paste, then send the email to each person individually.) Subject Line: This means a lot… Or Would love to get your opinion… Email Text: Dear friends, family, and colleagues:  Thank you so much for reading this email. This isn’t an easy one for me to send, but it is extremely important to me, so I sincerely appreciate you investing your valuable time reading (and hopefully responding to) it.  This email is going out to only a select group of people. Each of you knows me well, and I’m hoping will give me honest feedback about my strengths and most importantly, my weaknesses (aka “areas of improvement.”) I’ve never done anything like this before, but I feel that for me grow and improve as a person, I need to get a more accurate picture of how I’m showing up to the people that matter most to me. In order to become the person I need to be to create the life and contribute to others at the levels that I want, I need your feedback.  So, all I’m asking is that you take just a few minutes to email me back with what you honestly think are my top 2-3 “areas of improvement.” If it will make you feel better to also list my top 2-3 “strengths” (I’m sure it will make me feel better ), you are definitely welcome to. That’s it. And please don’t sugarcoat it or hold back anything. I will not be offended by anything that you share. In fact, the more “brutally” honest you are, the more leverage it will give me to make positive changes in my life.  Thank you again, and if there is anything else I can do to add value to your life, please let me know.  With sincere gratitude, Your Name
Hal Elrod (The Miracle Morning: The Not-So-Obvious Secret Guaranteed to Transform Your Life: Before 8AM)
Humans never outgrow their need to connect with others, nor should they, but mature, truly individual people are not controlled by these needs. Becoming such a separate being takes the whole of a childhood, which in our times stretches to at least the end of the teenage years and perhaps beyond. We need to release a child from preoccupation with attachment so he can pursue the natural agenda of independent maturation. The secret to doing so is to make sure that the child does not need to work to get his needs met for contact and closeness, to find his bearings, to orient. Children need to have their attachment needs satiated; only then can a shift of energy occur toward individuation, the process of becoming a truly individual person. Only then is the child freed to venture forward, to grow emotionally. Attachment hunger is very much like physical hunger. The need for food never goes away, just as the child's need for attachment never ends. As parents we free the child from the pursuit of physical nurturance. We assume responsibility for feeding the child as well as providing a sense of security about the provision. No matter how much food a child has at the moment, if there is no sense of confidence in the supply, getting food will continue to be the top priority. A child is not free to proceed with his learning and his life until the food issues are taken care of, and we parents do that as a matter of course. Our duty ought to be equally transparent to us in satisfying the child's attachment hunger. In his book On Becoming a Person, the psychotherapist Carl Rogers describes a warm, caring attitude for which he adopted the phrase unconditional positive regard because, he said, “It has no conditions of worth attached to it.” This is a caring, wrote Rogers, “which is not possessive, which demands no personal gratification. It is an atmosphere which simply demonstrates I care; not I care for you if you behave thus and so.” Rogers was summing up the qualities of a good therapist in relation to her/his clients. Substitute parent for therapist and child for client, and we have an eloquent description of what is needed in a parent-child relationship. Unconditional parental love is the indispensable nutrient for the child's healthy emotional growth. The first task is to create space in the child's heart for the certainty that she is precisely the person the parents want and love. She does not have to do anything or be any different to earn that love — in fact, she cannot do anything, since that love cannot be won or lost. It is not conditional. It is just there, regardless of which side the child is acting from — “good” or “bad.” The child can be ornery, unpleasant, whiny, uncooperative, and plain rude, and the parent still lets her feel loved. Ways have to be found to convey the unacceptability of certain behaviors without making the child herself feel unaccepted. She has to be able to bring her unrest, her least likable characteristics to the parent and still receive the parent's absolutely satisfying, security-inducing unconditional love. A child needs to experience enough security, enough unconditional love, for the required shift of energy to occur. It's as if the brain says, “Thank you very much, that is what we needed, and now we can get on with the real task of development, with becoming a separate being. I don't have to keep hunting for fuel; my tank has been refilled, so now I can get on the road again.” Nothing could be more important in the developmental scheme of things.
Gabor Maté (Hold On to Your Kids: Why Parents Need to Matter More Than Peers)
No one acts in a void. We all take cues from cultural norms, shaped by the law. For the law affects our ideas of what is reasonable and appropriate. It does so by what it prohibits--you might think less of drinking if it were banned, or more of marijuana use if it were allowed--but also by what it approves. . . . Revisionists agree that it matters what California or the United States calls a marriage, because this affects how Californians or Americans come to think of marriage. Prominent Oxford philosopher Joseph Raz, no friend of the conjugal view, agrees: "[O]ne thing can be said with certainty [about recent changes in marriage law]. They will not be confined to adding new options to the familiar heterosexual monogamous family. They will change the character of that family. If these changes take root in our culture then the familiar marriage relations will disappear. They will not disappear suddenly. Rather they will be transformed into a somewhat different social form, which responds to the fact that it is one of several forms of bonding, and that bonding itself is much more easily and commonly dissoluble. All these factors are already working their way into the constitutive conventions which determine what is appropriate and expected within a conventional marriage and transforming its significance." Redefining civil marriage would change its meaning for everyone. Legally wedded opposite-sex unions would increasingly be defined by what they had in common with same-sex relationships. This wouldn't just shift opinion polls and tax burdens. Marriage, the human good, would be harder to achieve. For you can realize marriage only by choosing it, for which you need at least a rough, intuitive idea of what it really is. By warping people's view of marriage, revisionist policy would make them less able to realize this basic way of thriving--much as a man confused about what friendship requires will have trouble being a friend. . . . Redefining marriage will also harm the material interests of couples and children. As more people absorb the new law's lesson that marriage is fundamentally about emotions, marriages will increasingly take on emotion's tyrannical inconstancy. Because there is no reason that emotional unions--any more than the emotions that define them, or friendships generally--should be permanent or limited to two, these norms of marriage would make less sense. People would thus feel less bound to live by them whenever they simply preferred to live otherwise. . . . As we document below, even leading revisionists now argue that if sexual complementarity is optional, so are permanence and exclusivity. This is not because the slope from same-sex unions to expressly temporary and polyamorous ones is slippery, but because most revisionist arguments level the ground between them: If marriage is primarily about emotional union, why privilege two-person unions, or permanently committed ones? What is it about emotional union, valuable as it can be, that requires these limits? As these norms weaken, so will the emotional and material security that marriage gives spouses. Because children fare best on most indicators of health and well-being when reared by their wedded biological parents, the same erosion of marital norms would adversely affect children's health, education, and general formation. The poorest and most vulnerable among us would likely be hit the hardest. And the state would balloon: to adjudicate breakup and custody issues, to meet the needs of spouses and children affected by divorce, and to contain and feebly correct the challenges these children face.
Sherif Girgis
Let us go and sit in the shade," said Lord Henry. "Parker has brought out the drinks, and if you stay any longer in this glare, you will be quite spoiled, and Basil will never paint you again. You really must not allow yourself to become sunburnt. It would be unbecoming." "What can it matter?" cried Dorian Gray, laughing, as he sat down on the seat at the end of the garden. "It should matter everything to you, Mr. Gray." "Why?" "Because you have the most marvellous youth, and youth is the one thing worth having." "I don't feel that, Lord Henry." "No, you don't feel it now. Some day, when you are old and wrinkled and ugly, when thought has seared your forehead with its lines, and passion branded your lips with its hideous fires, you will feel it, you will feel it terribly. Now, wherever you go, you charm the world. Will it always be so? ... You have a wonderfully beautiful face, Mr. Gray. Don't frown. You have. And beauty is a form of genius--is higher, indeed, than genius, as it needs no explanation. It is of the great facts of the world, like sunlight, or spring-time, or the reflection in dark waters of that silver shell we call the moon. It cannot be questioned. It has its divine right of sovereignty. It makes princes of those who have it. You smile? Ah! when you have lost it you won't smile.... People say sometimes that beauty is only superficial. That may be so, but at least it is not so superficial as thought is. To me, beauty is the wonder of wonders. It is only shallow people who do not judge by appearances. The true mystery of the world is the visible, not the invisible.... Yes, Mr. Gray, the gods have been good to you. But what the gods give they quickly take away. You have only a few years in which to live really, perfectly, and fully. When your youth goes, your beauty will go with it, and then you will suddenly discover that there are no triumphs left for you, or have to content yourself with those mean triumphs that the memory of your past will make more bitter than defeats. Every month as it wanes brings you nearer to something dreadful. Time is jealous of you, and wars against your lilies and your roses. You will become sallow, and hollow-cheeked, and dull-eyed. You will suffer horribly.... Ah! realize your youth while you have it. Don't squander the gold of your days, listening to the tedious, trying to improve the hopeless failure, or giving away your life to the ignorant, the common, and the vulgar. These are the sickly aims, the false ideals, of our age. Live! Live the wonderful life that is in you! Let nothing be lost upon you. Be always searching for new sensations. Be afraid of nothing.... A new Hedonism--that is what our century wants. You might be its visible symbol. With your personality there is nothing you could not do. The world belongs to you for a season.... The moment I met you I saw that you were quite unconscious of what you really are, of what you really might be. There was so much in you that charmed me that I felt I must tell you something about yourself. I thought how tragic it would be if you were wasted. For there is such a little time that your youth will last--such a little time. The common hill-flowers wither, but they blossom again. The laburnum will be as yellow next June as it is now. In a month there will be purple stars on the clematis, and year after year the green night of its leaves will hold its purple stars. But we never get back our youth. The pulse of joy that beats in us at twenty becomes sluggish. Our limbs fail, our senses rot. We degenerate into hideous puppets, haunted by the memory of the passions of which we were too much afraid, and the exquisite temptations that we had not the courage to yield to. Youth! Youth! There is absolutely nothing in the world but youth!
Oscar Wilde (The Picture of Dorian Gray)
THE SK8 MAKER VS. GLOBAL INDUSTRIALIZATION This new era of global industrialization is where my personal analogy with the history of the skateboard maker diverges. It’s no longer cost-effective to run a small skateboard company in the U.S., and the handful of startups that pull it off are few and far between. The mega manufacturers who can churn out millions of decks at low cost and record speed each year in Chinese factories employ proprietary equipment and techniques that you and I can barely imagine. Drills that can cut all eight truck holes in a stack of skateboard decks in a single pull. CNC machinery to create CAD-perfect molds used by giant two-sided hydraulic presses that can press dozens of boards in a few hours. Computer-operated cutting bits that can stamp out a deck to within 1⁄64 in. of its specified shape. And industrial grade machines that apply multicolored heat-transfer graphics in minutes. In a way, this factory automation has propelled skateboarding to become a multinational, multi-billion dollar industry. The best skateboarders require this level of precision in each deck. Otherwise, they could end up on their tails after a failed trick. Or much worse. As the commercial deck relies more and more on a process that is out of reach for mere mortals, there is great value in the handmade and one of a kind. Making things from scratch is a dying art on the brink of extinction. It was pushed to the edge when public schools dismissed woodworking classes and turned the school woodshop into a computer lab. And when you separate society from how things are made—even a skateboard—you lose touch with the labor and the materials and processes that contributed to its existence in the first place. It’s not long before you take for granted the value of an object. The result is a world where cheap labor produces cheap goods consumed by careless customers who don’t even value the things they own.
Matt Berger (The Handmade Skateboard: Design & Build a Custom Longboard, Cruiser, or Street Deck from Scratch)
For the better part of two years Niels Lyhne wandered abroad. He was so lonely. He had no family, no friend who was dear to his heart. But there was a greater loneliness about him than that; for a person may well feel anguished and forsaken if on the whole enormous earth there is not one small place he can bless and wish well, someplace he can turn his heart toward when his heart insists on swelling, a place he can long for when longing insists on spreading its wings; but if he has the clear, steady star of a life’s goal shining overhead, then there is no night so lonely that he is entirely alone. But Niels Lyhne had no star. He didn’t know what to do with himself and his abilities. He did have talent, but he just couldn’t use it; he went around feeling like a painter without hands. How he envied the others, great and small, who, no matter where they reached in life, always found something to hold on to! Because he could not find anything to hold on to. It seemed to him that all he could do was sing the old romantic songs over again, and everything that he had accomplished had been nothing more than this. It was as if his talent were something remote in him, a quiet Pompeii, or like a harp he could take out of a corner. It was not omnipresent, it did not run down the street with him, it did not reside in his eyes, it did not tingle in his fingertips, not at all; his talent did not have a hold on him. At times it seemed to him that he had been born half a century too late, at other times that he had arrived much too early. The talent within him was rooted in something from the past which was the only thing that could give it life. It could not draw nourishment from his opinions, his convictions, his sympathies, it could not assimilate them and give them form; they floated away from each other, these two parts, like water and oil, they could be shaken together but could not be mixed, never become one.
Jens Peter Jacobsen (Niels Lyhne)
1. TO YOU HE WHO SPOKE and wrote this message will be greatly disappointed if it does not lead many to the Lord Jesus. It is sent forth in childlike dependence upon the power of God the Holy Ghost, to use it in the conversion of millions, if so He pleases. No doubt many poor men and women will take up this little volume, and the Lord will visit them with grace. To answer this end, the very plainest language has been chosen, and many homely expressions have been used. But if those of wealth and rank should glance at this book, the Holy Ghost can impress them also; since that which can be understood by the unlettered is none the less attractive to the instructed. Oh that some might read it who will become great winners of souls! Who knows how many will find their way to peace by what they read here? A more important question to you, dear reader, is this- Will you be one of them? A certain man placed a fountain by the wayside, and he hung up a cup near to it by a little chain. He was told some time after that a great art-critic had found much fault with its design. "But," said he, "do many thirsty persons drink at it?" Then they told him that thousands of poor people, men, women, and children, slaked their thirst at this fountain; and he smiled and said, that he was little troubled by the critic's observation, only he hoped that on some sultry summer's day the critic himself might fill the cup, and he refreshed, and praise the name of the Lord. Here is my fountain, and here is my cup: find fault if you please; but do drink of the water of life. I only care for this. I had rather bless the soul of the poorest crossing-sweeper, or rag-gatherer, than please a prince of the blood, and fail to convert him to God. Reader, do you mean business in reading these pages? If so, we are agreed at the outset; but nothing short of your finding Christ and Heaven is the business aimed at here. Oh that we may seek this together!
Charles Haddon Spurgeon (Christian Classics: Six books by Charles Spurgeon in a single collection, with active table of contents)
Although parents and teachers are forever telling children to “grow up,” maturation cannot be commanded. One cannot teach a child to be an individual or train a child to be his own person. This is the work of maturation and maturation alone. We can nurture the process, provide the right conditions, remove the impediments, but we can no more make a child grow up than we can order the plants in our garden to grow. Dealing with immature children, we may need to show them how to act, draw the boundaries of what is acceptable, and articulate what our expectations are. Children who do not understand fairness have to be taught to take turns. Children not yet mature enough to appreciate the impact of their actions must be provided with rules and prescriptions for acceptable conduct. But such scripted behavior mustn't be confused with the real thing. One cannot be any more mature than one truly is, only act that way when appropriately cued. To take turns because it is right to do so is certainly civil, but to take turns out of a genuine sense of fairness can only come from maturity. To say sorry may be appropriate to the situation, but to assume responsibility for one's actions can come only from the process of individuation. There is no substitute for genuine maturation, no shortcut to getting there. Behavior can be prescribed or imposed, but maturity comes from the heart and mind. The real challenge for parents is to help kids grow up, not simply to look like grownups. If discipline is no cure for immaturity and if scripting is helpful but insufficient, how can we help our children mature? For years, develop-mentalists puzzled over the conditions that activated maturation. The breakthrough came only when researchers discovered the fundamental importance of attachment. Surprising as it may be to say, the story of maturation is quite straightforward and self-evident. Like so much else in child development, it begins with attachment.
Gabor Maté (Hold On to Your Kids: Why Parents Need to Matter More Than Peers)
Godly grief readily confesses. After seeing your sin, and sorrowing over your sin, the worst thing you can do is to try stuffing your sin, hoping nobody ever finds out who you really are. Turns out, the best way to avoid being found out a fake is just not to be one—to be open with people about your struggles, while being equally as open in your praise of God for what He’s making of you, despite your many messes and problems. This is where the church comes in so beautifully, because it gets us around people who can help us carry the nagging issues of our hearts—people to whom we can confess our battles with sin and confess our need for a Savior—while we’re doing the same for them. When the only person that truly knows all about us is the person who uses our hairbrush, we are easy pickings for the Enemy, ripe for being outmaneuvered and outsmarted. That’s how we remain slaves to our repeated failures, by basically resisting the redeeming love of God and the needed, encouraging support of others. Because even if we’re as much as 99 percent known (or much less, as is more often the case) to our spouse, our friends, our family, and the people around us, we are still not fully known. We’re still hiding out. We’re still covering up. We don’t want them to know everything. But true sorrow over sin begs to be vented—both vertically to God and horizontally to others. So mark this down: You have no shot at experiencing real change in life if you’re habitually protecting your image, hyping your spiritual brand, and putting out the vibe that you’re a lot more unfazed by temptation than the reality you know and live would suggest. Even Satan himself cannot succeed at clobbering you with condemnation when the stuff he’s accusing you of doing is the same stuff you’ve been honestly admitting before God and others and trusting the Lord for His help with. That’s some of the best action you can take against the sin in your life. That’s responsible repentance.
Matt Chandler (Recovering Redemption: A Gospel Saturated Perspective on How to Change)
also been a white-collar worker in my career. In my experience, there are two types of people who do this type of work: Achievers and Hiders. Achievers are the people who want to perform at a high level. They are ambitious, motivated and energetic. They are full of ideas and want to move up the corporate ladder, which are great attributes to have. But there is a downside for the Achiever. The moment a person decides to be an Achiever, they become a target. Their boss sees them as threatening to their job, so they start to hold them down or take shots at their reputation. Their peers see them as a person who will either embarrass them or keep them from getting a promotion, so they start to do what they can to undermine their accomplishments. So, to remain an Achiever and survive in this hostile environment, a person must become good at one thing that has nothing to do with their productivity—and that’s politics. They must learn how to navigate the political world by diminishing their enemies and strengthening their relationship with powerful people. In fact, some of the most successful people in the corporate world aren’t Achievers at all. They are pure politicians. So if you decide to work in the corporate environment and to be an Achiever, you must accept the fact that you must become a good politician also. Now, let’s talk about the Hiders. These are the people who HATE politics, but still need a job. They learn not to be the ambitious Achiever. They don’t stand out. They don’t speak up in meetings. They don’t bring new ideas. They HIDE. They keep their heads down and do as they’re told. They do just enough so that they aren’t talked about negatively. They survive. And this has worked for decades. But in the New Economy, it’s becoming much more difficult to hide. And people are running out of time. So, back to our Perfect Career List: Can a white-collar job deliver on the list? Again, the clear answer is no—certainly not in very many areas. Sales
Eric Worre (Go Pro - 7 Steps to Becoming a Network Marketing Professional)
Millions of us daily take advantage of [Skype], delighted to carry the severed heads of family members under our arms as we move from the deck to the cool of inside, or steering them around our new homes, bobbing them like babies on a seasickening tour. Skype can be a wonderful consolation prize in the ongoing tournament of globalization, though typically the first place it transforms us is to ourselves. How often are the initial seconds of a video's call takeoff occupied by two wary, diagonal glances, with a quick muss or flick of the hair, or a more generous tilt of the screen in respect to the chin? Please attend to your own mask first. Yet, despite the obvious cheer of seeing a faraway face, lonesomeness surely persists in the impossibility of eye contact. You can offer up your eyes to the other person, but your own view will be of the webcam's unwarm aperture. ... The problem lies in the fact that we can't bring our silence with us through walls. In phone conversations, while silence can be both awkward and intimate, there is no doubt that each of you inhabits the same darkness, breathing the same dead air. Perversely, a phone silence is a thick rope tying two speakers together in the private void of their suspended conversation. This binding may be unpleasant and to be avoided, but it isn't as estranging as its visual counterpart. When talk runs to ground on Skype, and if the purpose of the call is to chat, I can quickly sense that my silence isn't their silence. For some reason silence can't cross the membrane of the computer screen as it can uncoil down phone lines. While we may be lulled into thinking that a Skype call, being visual, is more akin to a hang-out than a phone conversation, it is in many ways more demanding than its aural predecessor. Not until Skype has it become clear how much companionable quiet has depended on co-inhabiting an atmosphere, with a simple act of sharing the particulars of a place -- the objects in the room, the light through the window -- offering a lovely alternative to talk.
Laurence Scott (The Four-Dimensional Human: Ways of Being in the Digital World)
I had always been a very physically active person. And I loved my job. I got into the military because of September 11, but I stumbled into a career that I absolutely loved. I was meant to be an infantry soldier. I thought, I will never be physical again and my career in the military is over. One tiny trip wire had taken everything away from me in one explosive moment. I sank into a very dark place. I wallowed in both my physical pain and my mental anguish. One day my parents were sitting by my side in the hospital room--as they did every day--and I turned to my mom and blurted out, “How am I ever gonna be able to tie my shoes again?” Mom rebutted my pity party with, “Well, your father can tie his shoes with one hand. Andy! Show Noah how you can tie your shoes with one hand.” And as I started to protest, Dad cut my whining off at the pass. “Oh my gosh, Noah, I can tie my shoes with one hand.” And he did, as I had seen him do so many times growing up. “I just need a little sympathy,” I said. To which Mom replied, “Well, you’re not getting it today.” A few days after I’d had my shoelace meltdown, after many tears, I found myself drained of emotion, a hollowed-out shell. My mother saw the blank expression on my face and she saw an opportunity to drag me out of the fog. She took it. She came up to my bed, leaned in close--but not so close that the other people in the room couldn’t hear her, and said, “You just had to outdo your dad and lose your arm and your leg.” She smiled, waiting for my reply, but all I could do was laugh. It was funny but it was also at that moment that I think I felt a little spark of excitement and anticipation again. It would take a while to fully ignite the flame but what she said definitely tapped into some important part of me. I have a very competitive side and Mom knew that. She knew just what to say to shake me up, so I could realize, Okay, life will go on from here. I thought to myself, My dad could do a whole lot with just one hand. Imagine how much more impressive it’ll look with two missing limbs. And I smiled the best I could through a wired jaw.
Noah Galloway (Living with No Excuses: The Remarkable Rebirth of an American Soldier)
Being Willing to Ask for Help • I’ll ask for help whenever I need to. • I’ll remind myself that if I need something, most people will be glad to help if they can. • I’ll use clear, intimate communication to ask for what I want, explaining my feelings and the reasons for my request. • I’ll trust that most people will listen if I ask them to. Being Myself, Whether People Accept Me or Not • When I state my thoughts clearly and politely, without malice, I won’t try to control how people take it. • I won’t give more energy than I really have. • Instead of trying to please, I’ll give other people a true indication of how I feel. • I won’t volunteer for something if I think I’ll resent it later. • If someone says something I find offensive, I’ll offer an alternative viewpoint. I won’t try to change the other person’s mind; I just won’t let the statement go unremarked upon. Sustaining and Appreciating Emotional Connections • I’ll make a point of keeping in touch with special people I care about and returning their calls or electronic messages. • I’ll think of myself as a strong person who deserves to give and receive help from my community of friends. • Even when people aren’t saying the “right” thing, I’ll tune in to whether they’re trying to help me. If their effort makes me feel emotionally nurtured, I’ll express my gratitude. • When I’m irritated with someone, I’ll think about what I want to say that could improve our relationship. I’ll wait until I cool off and then ask if the other person is willing to listen to my feelings. Having Reasonable Expectations for Myself • I’ll keep in mind that being perfect isn’t always necessary. I’ll get stuff done rather than obsess over getting things done perfectly. • When I get tired, I’ll rest or do something different. My level of physical energy will tell me when I’ve been doing too much. I won’t wait for an accident or illness to make me stop. • When I make a mistake, I’ll chalk it up to being human. Even if I think I’ve anticipated everything, there will be outcomes I don’t expect. • I’ll remember that everyone is responsible for their own feelings and for expressing their needs clearly. Beyond common courtesy, it isn’t up to me to guess what others want.
Lindsay C. Gibson (Adult Children of Emotionally Immature Parents: How to Heal from Distant, Rejecting, or Self-Involved Parents)
CHANGING YOUR LIFE TO ACCOMMODATE THE SIXTH SECRET The sixth secret is about the choiceless life. Since we all take our choices very seriously, adopting this new attitude requires a major shift. Today, you can begin with a simple exercise. Sit down for a few minutes and reassess some of the important choices you’ve made over the years. Take a piece of paper and make two columns labeled “Good Choice” and “Bad Choice.” Under each column, list at least five choices relating to those moments you consider the most memorable and decisive in your life so far—you’ll probably start with turning points shared by most people (the serious relationship that collapsed, the job you turned down or didn’t get, the decision to pick one profession or another), but be sure to include private choices that no one knows about except you (the fight you walked away from, the person you were too afraid to confront, the courageous moment when you overcame a deep fear). Once you have your list, think of at least one good thing that came out of the bad choices and one bad thing that came out of the good choices. This is an exercise in breaking down labels, getting more in touch with how flexible reality really is. If you pay attention, you may be able to see that not one but many good things came from your bad decisions while many bad ones are tangled up in your good decisions. For example, you might have a wonderful job but wound up in a terrible relationship at work or crashed your car while commuting. You might love being a mother but know that it has drastically curtailed your personal freedom. You may be single and very happy at how much you’ve grown on your own, yet you have also missed the growth that comes from being married to someone you deeply love. No single decision you ever made has led in a straight line to where you find yourself now. You peeked down some roads and took a few steps before turning back. You followed some roads that came to a dead end and others that got lost at too many intersections. Ultimately, all roads are connected to all other roads. So break out of the mindset that your life consists of good and bad choices that set your destiny on an unswerving course. Your life is the product of your awareness. Every choice follows from that, and so does every step of growth.
Deepak Chopra (The Book of Secrets: Unlocking the Hidden Dimensions of Your Life)
Action Step: Nourished by “Light” You can prove to yourself how nourishing a new word can be once it begins to be your personal theme. Let’s use the word light. Since it’s the opposite of heavy, this word is one of the best for our purposes. The more you bring light into your life, the easier it will be to lose weight. Why? Because light covers so many positive experiences. Look at the following usages: Lighthearted Light-handed Enlightened Feeling light and bright The light of inspiration Lightness of being The light of the soul The light of God If you had these things in your life, it would be much easier for your body to be light. Your mind would be sending messages that are the opposite of heavy, dull, inert, tired, bored, dark, unenlightened. Start to rid yourself of those messages and let your body conform to lightness and all of its positive connotations. With this background, you can proceed to use light in various ways, beginning with the physical sensation of being light. Exercise: Filling with Light Sit in a quiet room by yourself. Close your eyes and take a few deep breaths until you feel centered and ready. (It’s best to sit upright if you can rather than lounging back in your chair.) Breathing normally, visualize light filling your chest each time you inhale. The light is soft, warm, and white. Watch it suffuse your chest. Now exhale normally, but leave the light inside. On your next breath, take in more light. See the light filling your chest now begin to suffuse the rest of your body, moving down into your abdomen. Don’t force the visualization, and don’t worry if you have trouble seeing the light—even a faint sense of white light is good enough. With each breath, let the light suffuse your arms, then your hands all the way to the fingertips. Let it suffuse your legs down to your toes. Finally, send the light into your head and out the top in a beam that reaches high. Sit with the light for a few moments, then lift your arms, letting them float upward as if the light is causing them to rise. You are like a balloon filled completely with light. Enjoy the sensation, then open your eyes. This is a good exercise to counteract feelings of dullness, heaviness, fatigue, and sadness. The sensation of being physically light, paired with the visualization of inner light, creates a big change in how you relate to your body.
Deepak Chopra (What Are You Hungry For?: The Chopra Solution to Permanent Weight Loss, Well-Being and Lightness of Soul)
I’ve experienced all kinds of discrimination,” Oshima says. “Only people who’ve been discriminated against can really know how much it hurts. Each person feels the pain in his own way, each has his own scars. So I think I’m as concerned about fairness and justice as anybody. But what disgusts me even more are people who have no imagination. The kind T. S. Eliot calls hollow men. People who fill up that lack of imagination with heartless bits of straw, not even aware of what they’re doing. Callous people who throw a lot of empty words at you, trying to force you to do what you don’t want to. Like that lovely pair we just met.” He sighs and twirls the long slender pencil in his hand. “Gays, lesbians, straights, feminists, fascist pigs, communists, Hare Krishnas—none of them bother me. I don’t care what banner they raise. But what I can’t stand are hollow people. When I’m with them I just can’t bear it, and wind up saying things I shouldn’t. With those women—I should’ve just let it slide, or else called Miss Saeki and let her handle it. She would have given them a smile and smoothed things over. But I just can’t do that. I say things I shouldn’t, do things I shouldn’t do. I can’t control myself. That’s one of my weak points. Do you know why that’s a weak point of mine?” “’Cause if you take every single person who lacks much imagination seriously, there’s no end to it,” I say. “That’s it,” Oshima says. He taps his temple lightly with the eraser end of the pencil. “But there’s one thing I want you to remember, Kafka. Those are exactly the kind of people who murdered Miss Saeki’s childhood sweetheart. Narrow minds devoid of imagination. Intolerance, theories cut off from reality, empty terminology, usurped ideals, inflexible systems. Those are the things that really frighten me. What I absolutely fear and loathe. Of course it’s important to know what’s right and what’s wrong. Individual errors in judgment can usually be corrected. As long as you have the courage to admit mistakes, things can be turned around. But intolerant, narrow minds with no imagination are like parasites that transform the host, change form, and continue to thrive. They’re a lost cause, and I don’t want anyone like that coming in here.” Oshima points at the stacks with the tip of his pencil. What he means, of course, is the entire library. “I wish I could just laugh off people like that, but I can’t.
Haruki Murakami (Kafka on the Shore)
Sam Underwater, everything is quiet. Tranquil. Like heaven is all around you, caressing your body, pulling you into its embrace. Deeper and deeper, it pulls at your legs until they beg to be released. I hold my water-resistant camera in front of me and take multiple pictures of the cold depths of the ocean. Its beauty never fails to mesmerize me. But I can’t stay for too long; sooner or later, that urge to breathe always pulls me back to the surface toward the dark sky littered with a million flickering lights … back into the noise of swooshing water and rushing wind. The shore is mostly deserted, except for a few beer cans, party cups, and some clothes and trash lying scattered all around. The only other person there is Nate Wilson … the most handsome guy at school and so much more than that. He’s sitting on a few rocks near the edge of the beach with a girl by his side. I can’t stop watching. Their hands touch briefly, but then the wave overtakes me and blocks my view. When the water lowers, I shake my head, but the waves keep picking up. Still, I hold up my camera and take a few pictures. Right as he turns his head toward me, I dive underwater again. Here, there are no boys, no girls, and no secret touches. Just me and the water, and all the beautiful creatures below that need to meet my camera. A single picture says more than words ever will. No matter how powerful they are. Nate People say it only takes a few minutes for your life to be destroyed. I never believed them … until today. With just the snap of a finger, a stupid decision and a simple push, I marked my own fate. My body grows colder and colder the longer I stay in the water. It consumes me whole as I stray farther and farther away from myself. From reality. I’m so damn dizzy, but I can’t collapse here. Not now, not in the middle of the ocean. I take a deep breath and peel my eyes open, forcing myself to go. That’s when I spot her … the girl and her camera. FLASH. I cover my eyes with my hand. Salty seawater enters my nostrils and mouth as I struggle to swim. When I open my eyes again, the girl is gone; swallowed by the same waves that drag me back to the shore. As my feet sink into the sand and the water creeps up against my toes, I stop and turn around, clutching the long red hairs in my hand as though they’re my last lifeline. This is now the place where not only my life changed forever. But hers too.
Clarissa Wild (Cruel Boy)
You’ve got spirit, I’ll give you that,” Ezmia said. “Perhaps this will humble you.” Ezmia placed the glass jar she had been carrying on a small table close to Charlotte’s cage. Charlotte was horrifed to see a miniature ghostly version of the Fairy Godmother trapped inside. “That’s my… my… grandmother!” Charlotte said, almost forgetting she was still pretending to be her own daughter. “What have you done to her?” A smile appeared on Ezmia’s face, matching the satisfaction in her eyes. “I captured her soul,” she said. The thought almost made Charlotte sick. She’d had no idea such a thing was possible, even in the fairy-tale world. “What do you want with her soul?” Charlotte asked. “It’s a bit of a hobby of mine, actually,” Ezmia said and walked to her fireplace. Displayed proudly on the mantel were five other turquoise jars, each containing a ghostly substance. “You’re a soul collector?” Charlotte asked. “Is it to make up for being soulless?” “What a clever play on words,” Ezmia said mockingly. “You know that phrase forgive and forget? Well, I always disagreed with it—I found it impossible, actually. People would do me wrong and then forget about me, as if their actions didn’t matter—because I didn’t matter. How was I supposed to forgive people like that?” “So you imprisoned their souls instead of forgiving?” Charlotte said. “Precisely,” Ezmia said. “I found taking away their life force to be much more appealing than simply forgiving. To forgive would be to allow them to continue living their lives, free of consequence. But by taking their souls and preventing them from all future happiness, I could heal and find peace.” Charlotte couldn’t believe what she was hearing. “Do you honestly expect anyone to sympathize with that?” Charlotte asked her. Ezmia stared into the fire at the burning skulls, almost in a trance. “I don’t want the world to understand; I want it to grovel,” she said. The confession made Charlotte’s heart heavier. She wondered if she would ever escape the clutches of a person who thought like this. But thinking about her children, Bob, and the life she had been stolen from gave Charlotte the strength to survive the Enchantress’s imprisonment. “I find it hard to believe that the Fairy Godmother, who is known for her generosity, would harm you in any way,” Charlotte said. “Sometimes help can be just as destructive as harm,” Ezmia said. “But I imagine someone who helps for a
Chris Colfer (The Enchantress Returns (The Land of Stories, #2))
Kathy’s teachers view her as a good student who always does her homework but rarely participates in class. Her close friends see her as a loyal and trustworthy person who is a lot of fun once you get to know her. The other students in school think she is shy and very quiet. None of them realize how much Kathy struggles with everyday life. When teachers call on her in class, her heart races, her face gets red and hot, and she forgets what she wants to say. Kathy believes that people think she is stupid and inadequate. She imagines that classmates and teachers talk behind her back about the silly things she says. She makes excuses not to go to social events because she is terrified she will do something awkward. Staying home while her friends are out having a good time also upsets her. “Why can’t I just act like other people?” she often thinks. Although Kathy feels isolated, she has a very common problem--social anxiety. Literally millions of people are so affected by self-consciousness that they have difficulties in social situations. For some, the anxiety occurs during very specific events, such as giving a speech or eating in public. For others, like Kathy, social anxiety is part of everyday life. Unfortunately, social anxiety is not an easily diagnosed condition. Instead, it is often viewed as the far edge of a continuum of behaviors and feelings that occur during social situations. Although you may not have as much difficulty as Kathy, shyness may still be causing you distress, affecting your relationships, or making you act in ways with which you are not happy. If this is the case, you will benefit from the advice and techniques provided in this book. The good news is that it is possible to change your thinking and behavior. However, there are no easy solutions. It takes strong motivation and time to overcome social anxiety. It might even be necessary to see a professional therapist or take medication. Eventually, becoming free of your anxiety will make the hard work well worth the effort. This book will help you understand social anxiety and the impact it can have on your life, now and in the future. You will find out how the disorder is diagnosed, you will receive information on professional guidance, and you will learn ways to cope with and manage the symptoms. Becoming an extroverted person is probably unlikely, but you can become more confident in social situations and increase your self-esteem.
Heather Moehn (Social Anxiety)
1. Do you recall anyone drinking or taking drugs or being involved in some other behavior that you now believe could be dysfunctional? 2. Did you avoid bringing friends to your home because of drinking or some other dysfunctional behavior in the home? 3. Did one of your parents make excuses for the other parent’s drinking or other behaviors? 4. Did your parents focus on each other so much that they seemed to ignore you? 5. Did your parents or relatives argue constantly? 6. Were you drawn into arguments or disagreements and asked to choose sides with one parent or relative against another? 7. Did you try to protect your brothers or sisters against drinking or other behavior in the family? 8. As an adult, do you feel immature? Do you feel like you are a child inside? 9. As an adult, do you believe you are treated like a child when you interact with your parents? Are you continuing to live out a childhood role with the parents? 10. Do you believe that it is your responsibility to take care of your parents’ feelings or worries? Do other relatives look to you to solve their problems? 11. Do you fear authority figures and angry people? 12. Do you constantly seek approval or praise but have difficulty accepting a compliment when one comes your way? 13. Do you see most forms of criticism as a personal attack? 14. Do you over commit yourself and then feel angry when others do not appreciate what you do? 15. Do you think you are responsible for the way another person feels or behaves? 16. Do you have difficulty identifying feelings? 17. Do you focus outside yourself for love or security? 18. Do you involve yourself in the problems of others? Do you feel more alive when there is a crisis? 19. Do you equate sex with intimacy? 20. Do you confuse love and pity? 21. Have you found yourself in a relationship with a compulsive or dangerous person and wonder how you got there? 22. Do you judge yourself without mercy and guess at what is normal? 23. Do you behave one way in public and another way at home? 24. Do you think your parents had a problem with drinking or taking drugs? 25. Do you think you were affected by the drinking or other dysfunctional behavior of your parents or family? If you answered yes to three or more of these questions, you may be suffering from the effects of growing up in an alcoholic or other dysfunctional family. As The Laundry List states, you can be affected even if you did not take a drink. Please read Chapter Two to learn more about these effects.
Adult Children of Alcoholics World Service Organization (Adult Children of Alcoholics/Dysfunctional Families)
Thanks to our discussion in the last chapter, we can also agree that character is a product of perseverance: “Suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope” (Rom. 5:3–4). I don’t know how that idea strikes you, but it sounds a little backward to me. I would expect that a person with character would find it easier to persevere through difficult circumstances. That makes sense. But how does perseverance produce character? When I look at the world around me, it seems to me that most things actually decay over time rather than grow stronger. The longer we live in our home, the more I see spots that need a paint touch-up. The longer I drive my car, the more I find I need to take it in for tune-ups and repairs. And the longer I live, the more I realize my body isn’t what it used to be! But maybe this process of perseverance leading to character works differently. Surely God is the X-factor. When you add God to the equation, persistence over time builds up character and strength instead of taking it away. Consider, if you will, the snowball. Left by itself, it doesn’t amount to much. It’s just a little round chunk of white frozen water. Yet place that snowball at the top of a steep hill on a snowy day, and things begin to change. If you invest some time rolling that snowball across the ground so it picks up snow and grows into a larger ball, you begin to create something big and heavy. If you invest even more time and energy (this is where perseverance comes in), you might get that ball rolling down the hill. And the longer it rolls, the faster it goes, the bigger it gets. Now you’ve got something powerful. This is a force to be reckoned with. This is when people start running for cover. Your little snowball suddenly becomes a runaway freight train! I believe that equation of suffering, which produces perseverance, which produces character, works in a similar fashion. Our willingness to trust and rely on the Lord in a time of trouble invites His power to work in our lives. The more we trust and depend on Him, the easier it becomes. As the Lord says, “My yoke is easy and my burden is light” (Matt. 11:30). Pretty soon our perseverance enables the Lord to add character to our “snowball”—and the more we persevere, the stronger we grow. We find ourselves rolling downhill toward a godly life. It still might be a bumpy ride, but the size and momentum of our snowball just about guarantees that as long as we are pursuing God’s will for our lives, nothing will stop us.
Jim Daly (Stronger: Trading Brokenness for Unbreakable Strength)
In other words, you'll pretend to be someone else in order to snag a husband." "Oh, for heaven's sake," she said defensively, "it's no different than what half the women in society do to catch a man. I don't want to waste my time in pointless flirtation when a little knowledge will improve my aim on the targets." He flashed her a condescending smile. "What is it?" she snapped. "Only you would approach courtship as a marksman approaches a shooting match." He licked the tip of his pencil. "So who are these hapless targets?" "The Earl of Devonmont, the Duke of Lyons, and Fernandez Valdez, the Viscount de Basto." His jaw dropped. "Are you insane?" "I know they're rather beyond my reach, but they seem to like my company-" "I daresay they do!" He strode up to her, strangely angry. "The earl is a rakehell with a notorious reputation for trying to get beneath the skirts of every woman he meets. The duke's father was mad, and it's said to run in his family, which is why most women steer clear of him. And Basto is a Portuguese idiot who's too old for you and clearly trawling for some sweet young thing to nurse him in his declining years." "How can you say such things? The only one you know personally is Lord Devonmont, and you barely know even him." "I don't have to. Their reputations tell me they're utterly unacceptable." Unacceptable? Three of the most eligible bachelors in London? Mr. Pinter was mad, not her. "Lord Devonmont is Gabe's wife's cousin. The duke of Gabe's best friend, whom I've known since childhood, and the viscount...well..." "Is an oily sort, from what I hear," he snapped. "No, he isn't. He's very pleasant to talk to." Really, this was the most ridiculous conversation. "Who the devil do you think I should marry, anyway?" That seemed to take him aback. He glanced away. "I don't know," he muttered. "But no...That is, you shouldn't..." He tugged at his cravat. "They're wrong for you, that's all." She'd flustered Mr. Pinter. How astonishing! He was never flustered. It made him look vulnerable and much less...stiff. She rather liked that. But she'd like it even better if she understood what had provoked it. "Why do you care whom I choose, as long as you're paid? I'm wiling to pay extra to ensure that you find out everything I want to know." Once more he turned into Proud Pinter. "It isn't a matter of payment, madam. I choose my own assignments, and this one isn't to my taste. Good day," Turning on his heel, he headed for the door. Oh, dear, she hadn't meant to run him off entirely.
Sabrina Jeffries (A Lady Never Surrenders (Hellions of Halstead Hall, #5))
The Inner Critic really wants you to be okay. It really wants you to make it in the world, to have a good job, to make enough money. It really wants you to be loved, to be successful, to be accepted, to have a family. It developed in your early years to protect your vulnerability by helping you to adapt to the world around you and to meet its requirements, whatever they might be. In order to do its job properly, it needed to curb your natural inclinations and to make you acceptable to others by criticizing and correcting your behavior before other people could criticize or reject you. In this way, it reasoned, it could earn love and protection for you as well as save you much shame and hurt. However, the Inner Critic often does not know when to stop. It does not know when enough is enough. It has a tendency to grow until it is out of control and begins to undermine us and to do real damage. Its original intent gets lost in the sands of time. Like a well-trained CIA agent, the Inner Critic has learned how to infiltrate every portion of your life, checking you out in minute detail for weakness and imperfections. Since its main job is to protect you from being too vulnerable in the world, it must know everything about you that might be open to attack from the outside. But, like a renegade CIA agent, at some point the Critic oversteps its bounds, takes matters into its own hands, and begins to operate on its own agenda. The information, which was originally supposed to be for your overall defense and to promote your general well-being, is now being used against you, the very person it was meant to protect. With the Critic’s original aims and purposes forgotten, all that is left for it is the excitement of the chase and the wonderfully triumphant feeling of conquest, as it operates secretly and independently of any outside control. When the Critic starts to outgrow its initial usefulness in this way, there is real trouble. At this point, the Inner Critic makes you feel dreadful about yourself. With your Inner Critic watching your every move, you become self-conscious, awkward, and ever more fearful about making a mistake. You may even stop trying because the Critic tells you that you are going about things all wrong and will undoubtedly fail. Although, underneath all of this, the Critic may want you to be so perfect that you will not fail, its effect is to block any attempts you might make. The Inner Critic kills your creativity. How can you possibly try anything new or different when you know that you will do something wrong?
Hal Stone (Embracing Your Inner Critic: Turning Self-Criticism into a Creative Asset)
It was that very same attitude that had caused the heaviness on her heart right now. The phone calls she had received came from people who had spent all year spending money on the things they wanted: new cars, TVs, clothes and going out to eat and now they had nothing left to give to someone else. "When did it happen?" she wondered, "-- this change in people's thinking." What happened to the times when even a small gift was greatly appreciated because you knew the person had sacrificed so much in order to buy or make it? What happened to the times when parents, spouses and children worked so hard in order to be able to give that special gift to someone they loved? When did it become acceptable to call on your expensive cell phone, from your favorite restaurant, to let others know that you can't buy them a gift this year because you can't afford it? Had she been mistaken all this time in her understanding of gift giving? With a droop in her shoulders she turns and walks toward the little tree. How could it have lost its sparkle in a matter of moments? Why do the presents under it suddenly look less gaily wrapped? With tears gently rolling down her cheeks, she stoops to turn off the tree's lights. As she reaches for the plug, her hand accidentally brushes her Bible laying on the table. She looks up through the blur, her eyes alight upon the passage on the open page. "For God so LOVED the world that he GAVE his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life." A sweet peace starts warming her heart. She begins to smile and her tears are flowing even more freely now -- not from sadness, but from joy. The lights on the little tree become brighter and brighter, lighting up the whole room with it's sparkle. The gifts under it look more beautiful than those in the most expensive department stores for, in that moment, she realizes that she wasn't wrong to love, to sacrifice and to want to give gifts to the people she loves. Hadn't God Himself so loved us that He gave, with the greatest of sacrifices, the most wonderful gift, His Son. She was so glad that God hadn't spent His time in heaven selfishly using all His resources for Himself. She was thankful that He hadn't sent her a message saying, "Sorry, but I can't afford to give you a gift this year." In those few moments of heartbreak she had learned something more. She had learned what God must feel like to have the gift that He sacrificed so much to give be rejected and scorned. How hurtful to take away the blessing of giving from someone or to reject their gift. Yes, it seemed to be popular to say, "We can't afford to exchange gifts this year", but it didn't matter. She would continue to love, sacrifice and give, always following her heavenly Father's example.
Tawra Jean Kellam
This is what sin does to us all. At a deep and often unnoticed level, sin replaces worship of God with worship of self. It replaces submission with self-rule. It replaces gratitude with demands for more. It replaces faith with self-reliance. It replaces vertical joy with horizontal envy. It replaces a rest in God’s sovereignty with a quest for personal control. We live for our glory. We set up our rules. We ask others to serve our agenda. We curse whatever gets in our way. We hate having to wait. We get upset when we have to go without. We strike back when we think we have been wronged. We do all we can to satisfy our cravings. We think too much about our own pleasure. We envy those who have what we think we deserve. We pout when we think we have been overlooked. We hate suffering of any kind. We manipulate others for our own good. We attempt to work ourselves into positions of power and control. We are obsessed about what is best for us. We demand more than we serve, and we take more than we give. We long to be first and hate being last. We are all too concerned with being right, being noticed, and being affirmed. We find it easier to judge those who have offended us than to forgive them. We require life to be predictable, satisfying, and easy. We do all these things because we are full of ourselves, in awe more of ourselves than of God. This is what Paul is talking about when he writes that Christ “died for all, that those who live might no longer live for themselves” (2 Cor. 5:15). Here we see the great replacement again. It is what sin does to us all; no longer living for God, we live for ourselves. The myriad of dysfunctions of the human community can be traced to this one thing: awe. When we replace vertical awe of God with awe of self, bad things happen in the horizontal community. You see it played out in a thousand ways every day. If you listen, you will discover that the universal language of sinners in this broken world is complaint. When you’re at the center, when you feel entitled, when your desires dominate your heart, and when it really is all about you, you will have much to complain about. It is amazing how much more natural complaint is for us than thanks or how much more we tend to grumble than we tend to praise. We talk much more about what we want than about what we have been given. Notice how much we compare what we have to what others have and how little of the time we are satisfied. Listen to people very long, and you’ll hear the drone of complaint far more frequently than you’ll hear the melody of thankfulness. You see, we don’t first have a grumbling problem. No, we have an awe problem that results in a life of personal dissatisfaction and complaint. When awe of self replaces awe of God, praise will be rare and grumbling plentiful.
Paul David Tripp (Awe: Why It Matters for Everything We Think, Say, and Do)
And the wraith on the heart monitor looks pensively down at Gately from upside-down and asks does Gately remember the myriad thespian extras on for example his beloved ‘Cheers!,’ not the center-stage Sam and Carla and Nom, but the nameless patrons always at tables, filling out the bar’s crowd, concessions to realism, always relegated to back- and foreground; and always having utterly silent conversations: their faces would animate and mouths would move realistically, but without sound; only the name-stars at the bar itself could audibilize. The wraith says these fractional actors, human scenery, could be seen (but not heard) in most pieces of filmed entertainment. And Gately remembers them, the extras in all public scenes, especially like bar and restaurant scenes, or rather remembers how he doesn’t quite remember them, how it never struck his addled mind as in fact surreal that their mouths moved but nothing emerged, and what a miserable fucking bottom-rung job that must be for an actor, to be sort of human furniture, figurants the wraith says they’re called, these surreally mute background presences whose presence really revealed that the camera, like any eye, has a perceptual corner, a triage of who’s important enough to be seen and heard v. just seen. A term from ballet, originally, figurant, the wraith explains. The wraith pushes his glasses up in the vaguely sniveling way of a kid that’s just got slapped around on the playground and says he personally spent the vast bulk of his own former animate life as pretty much a figurant, furniture at the periphery of the very eyes closest to him, it turned out, and that it’s one heck of a crummy way to try to live. Gately, whose increasing self-pity leaves little room or patience for anybody else’s self-pity, tries to lift his left hand and wiggle his pinkie to indicate the world’s smallest viola playing the theme from The Sorrow and the Pity, but even moving his left arm makes him almost faint. And either the wraith is saying or Gately is realizing that you can’t appreciate the dramatic pathos of a figurant until you realize how completely trapped and encaged he is in his mute peripheral status, because like say for example if one of ‘Cheers!’’s bar’s figurants suddenly decided he couldn’t take it any more and stood up and started shouting and gesturing around wildly in a bid for attention and nonperipheral status on the show, Gately realizes, all that would happen is that one of the audibilizing ‘name’ stars of the show would bolt over from stage-center and apply restraints or the Heineken Maneuver or CPR, figuring the silent gesturing figurant was choking on a beer-nut or something, and that then the whole rest of that episode of ‘Cheers!’ would be about jokes about the name star’s life-saving heroics, or else his fuck-up in applying the Heineken Maneuver to somebody who wasn’t choking on a nut. No way for a figurant to win. No possible voice or focus for the encaged figurant.
David Foster Wallace (Infinite Jest)
The pathway is smooth. Why do you throw rocks before you?’ Using the Pain-to-Power Chart to help, you can begin to clear the rocks in front of you. These steps will help you clear the way: 1. Draw a large copy of the Pain-to-Power Chart and stick it on your wall. Just the simple act of making it larger will make you feel a little more powerful. You are already taking action! Remember that much of the trick of moving from pain to power is taking action – action is very powerful! Once the chart is on your wall it will always remind you of where you want to go in life – from pain to power. Awareness, knowledge, is half the battle. Having the chart on your wall will also help you to keep moving forward. 2. Put a pin at the place on the chart where you see yourself at this moment in your life. Are you in the middle, where you sometimes feel depressed and stuck, and at other times more in control? Or do you find yourself on the far left side, where there is little you are able to do to pull yourself out of the rut? Or perhaps you are already on the right side, where you feel you are really moving ahead with your life, with only a few areas that need to be worked on. I doubt that anyone reading this book has reached their goal of gaining total power over the self. Even the Buddhas don’t have power over their selves all the time! There are always new events that challenge a sense of personal power. 3. Each day look at the chart and ask yourself, ‘Do I see myself at the same place, or have I moved?’ Move the pin if you have moved. 4. If you keep in mind the way you want to go, it will help you make choices about what you are doing in your life. Before you take any action in life, ask yourself: ‘Is this action moving me to a more powerful place?’ If it isn’t, think again about doing it. A word of warning – if you go ahead anyway, knowing the action will keep you in a place of pain, don’t get angry with yourself about it. Use your mistakes to learn more about yourself. 5. Make your use of the chart fun. Having it as a game keeps you relaxed about how you are getting on. If you have children, they can create their own charts, and you can make a family game out of the fun of growing. 6. You might want to make different charts for different areas of your life. To be really powerful, you need to be in charge of all aspects of your life – your work, relationships, home, body, and so on. Often people are very powerful in some parts of their lives and very weak in others. For example, I am very powerful in terms of my career, but need to work on the area of exercise. To help you on your Pain-to-Power path, it’s important that you begin to develop Pain-to-Power words. The way you use words has a huge impact on the quality of your life. Certain words make you weaker; others make you powerful. Choose to move to Pain-to-Power Words as follows: PAIN-TO-POWER VOCABULARY • ‘I can’t’ suggests you have no control over your life, but ‘I won’t’ puts an issue in the area of choice. From this moment on, stop saying, ‘I can’t’.
Susan Jeffers (Feel the Fear and Do it Anyway (Quick Reads 2017))
This is painfully obvious at a poker table. Even weak players know, in principle, that seeing through the eyes of opponents is critical. She raised the bet $20? What does that tell me about her thinking—and the cards she has? Each bet is another clue to what your opponent is holding, or wants you to think she is holding, and the only way to piece it together is to imagine yourself in her seat. Good perspective-takers can make a lot of money. So you might suppose that anyone who takes poker seriously would get good at it, quickly, or take up another hobby. And yet they so often don’t. “Here’s a very simple example,” says Annie Duke, an elite professional poker player, winner of the World Series of Poker, and a former PhD-level student of psychology. “Everyone who plays poker knows you can either fold, call, or raise [a bet]. So what will happen is that when a player who isn’t an expert sees another player raise, they automatically assume that that player is strong, as if the size of the bet is somehow correlated at one with the strength of the other person’s hand.” This is a mistake. Duke teaches poker and to get her students to see like dragonflies she walks them through a game situation. A hand is dealt. You like your cards. In the first of several rounds of betting, you wager a certain amount. The other player immediately raises your bet substantially. Now, what do you think the other player has? Duke has taught thousands of students “and universally, they say ‘I think they have a really strong hand.’” So then she asks them to imagine the same situation, except they’re playing against her. The cards are dealt. Their hand is more than strong—it’s unbeatable. Duke makes her bet. Now, what will you do? Will you raise her bet? “And they say to me, ‘Well, no.’” If they raise, Duke may conclude their hand is strong and fold. They don’t want to scare her off. They want Duke to stay in for each of the rounds of betting so they can expand the pot as much as possible before they scoop it up. So they won’t raise. They’ll only call. Duke then walks them through the same hypothetical with a hand that is beatable but still very strong. Will you raise? No. How about a little weaker hand that is still a likely winner? No raise. “They would never raise with any of these really great hands because they don’t want to chase me away.” Then Duke asks them: Why did you assume that an opponent who raises the bet has a strong hand if you would not raise with the same strong hand? “And it’s not until I walk them through the exercise,” Duke says, that people realize they failed to truly look at the table from the perspective of their opponent. If Duke’s students were all vacationing retirees trying poker for the first time, this would only tell us that dilettantes tend to be naive. But “these are people who have played enough poker, and are passionate about the game, and consider themselves good enough, that they’re paying a thousand dollars for a seminar with me,” Duke says. “And they don’t understand this basic concept.”22
Philip E. Tetlock (Superforecasting: The Art and Science of Prediction)
Dr. Kerry said he'd been watching me. "You act like someone who is impersonating someone else. And it's as if you think your life depends on it." I didn't know what to say, so I said nothing. "It has never occurred to you," he said, "that you might have as much right to be here as anyone." He waited for an explanation. "I would enjoy serving the dinner," I said, "more than eating it." Dr. Kerry smiled. "You should trust Professor Steinberg. If he says you're a scholar-'pure gold,' I heard him say-then you are." "This is a magical place," I said. "Everything shines here." "You must stop yourself from thinking like that," Dr. Kerry said, his voice raised. "You are not fool's gold, shining only under a particular light. Whomever you become, whatever you make yourself into, that is who you always were. It was always in you. Not in Cambridge. In you. You are gold. And returning to BYU, or even to that mountain you came from, will not change who you are. It may change how others see you, it may even change how you see yourself-even gold appears dull in some lighting-but that is the illusion. And it always was." I wanted to believe him, to take his words and remake myself, but I'd never had that kind of faith. No matter how deeply I interred the memories, how tightly I shut my eyes against them, when I thought of my self, the images that came to mind were of that girl, in the bathroom, in the parking lot. I couldn't tell Dr. Kerry about that girl. I couldn't tell him that the reason I couldn't return to Cambridge was that being here threw into great relief every violent and degrading moment of my life. At BYU I could almost forget, allow what had been to blend into what was. But the contrast here was too great, the world before my eyes too fantastical. The memories were more real-more believable-than the stone spires. To myself I pretended there were other reasons I couldn't belong at Cambridge, reasons having to do with class and status: that it was because I was poor, had grown up poor. Because I could stand in the wind on the chapel roof and not tilt. That was the person who didn't belong in Cambridge: the roofer, not the whore. I can go to school, I had written in my journal that very afternoon. And I can buy new clothes. But I am still Tara Westover. I have done jobs no Cambridge student would do. Dress us any way you like, we are not the same. Clothes could not fix what was wrong with me. Something had rotted on the inside. Whether Dr. Kerry suspected any part of this, I'm not sure. But he understood that I had fixated on clothes as the symbol of why I didn't, and couldn't, belong. It was the last thing he said to me before he walked away, leaving me rooted, astonished, beside that grand chapel. "The most powerful determinant of who you are is inside you," he said. "Professor Steinberg says this is Pygmalion. Think of the story, Tara." He paused, his eyes fierce, his voice piercing. "She was just a cockney in a nice dress. Until she believed in herself. Then it didn't matter what dress she wore.
Tara Westover (Educated)
At the end of this Sabbath encounter with the religious leaders Mark records a remarkable sentence that sums up one of the main themes of the New Testament, “Then the Pharisees went out and began to plot with the Herodians how they might kill Jesus.” The Herodians were the supporters of Herod, the nastiest of the corrupt kings who ruled Israel, representing the Roman occupying power and its political system. In any country that the Romans conquered, they set up rulers. And wherever the Romans went, they brought along the culture of Greece—Greek philosophy, the Greek approach to sex and the body, the Greek approach to truth. Conquered societies like Israel felt assaulted by these immoral, cosmopolitan, pagan values. In these countries there were cultural resistance movements; and in Israel that was the Pharisees. They put all their emphasis on living by the teachings of the Hebrew Scriptures and putting up big hedges around themselves to prevent contamination by the pagans. See what was going on? The Herodians were moving with the times, while the Pharisees upheld traditional virtues. The Pharisees believed their society was being overwhelmed with pluralism and paganism, and they were calling for a return to traditional moral values. These two groups had been longtime enemies of each other—but now they agree: They have to get rid of Jesus. These two groups were not used to cooperating, but now they do. In fact, the Pharisees, the religious people, take the lead in doing so. That’s why I say this sentence hints at one of the main themes of the New Testament. The gospel of Jesus Christ is an offense to both religion and irreligion. It can’t be co-opted by either moralism or relativism. The “traditional values” approach to life is moral conformity—the approach taken by the Pharisees. It is that you must lead a very, very good life. The progressive approach, embodied in the Herodians, is self-discovery—you have to decide what is right or wrong for you. And according to the Bible, both of these are ways of being your own savior and lord. Both are hostile to the message of Jesus. And not only that, both lead to self-righteousness. The moralist says, “The good people are in and the bad people are out—and of course we’re the good ones.” The self-discovery person says, “Oh, no, the progressive, open-minded people are in and the judgmental bigots are out—and of course we’re the open-minded ones.” In Western cosmopolitan culture there’s an enormous amount of self-righteousness about self-righteousness. We progressive urbanites are so much better than people who think they’re better than other people. We disdain those religious, moralistic types who look down on others. Do you see the irony, how the way of self-discovery leads to as much superiority and self-righteousness as religion does? The gospel does not say, “the good are in and the bad are out,” nor “the open-minded are in and the judgmental are out.” The gospel says the humble are in and the proud are out. The gospel says the people who know they’re not better, not more open-minded, not more moral than anyone else, are in, and the people who think they’re on the right side of the divide are most in danger.
Timothy J. Keller (Jesus the King: Understanding the Life and Death of the Son of God)
EXERCISE 10: DEVELOPING A GRAND VISION You may want to do this exercise alone, out in a natural setting somewhere. 1. See Your Interests, Values, and Abilities. The next step is to discover how your interests and your deep values connect into and form your mission. It can be accomplished by seeing a grand, whole, meaningful image of what purpose you could dedicate your life to. This will be formed from your interests, values, and present goals. Begin to play with the images that you see, which represent some kind of direction that you want to take. As you get a sense of what your mission can be, see various snapshots of yourself doing what you love to do, snapshots of your abilities. 2. Focus on Heroes and Heroines. Take a look at what your favorite heroes or heroines do. See yourself doing things that give you the same feeling you get when you think of them. See snapshots of the person you want to become. Any images you don’t like can fade away. 3. Direct a Movie of Yourself. See yourself the way you want to be—doing the things you love to do. Whatever you choose to put on the screen, you’re the Spielberg, you’re the director. See the images that you feel passionate about. You can play with the images in front of you. Pretend that you’re in the middle of an inner, three-dimensional movie theater. It’s a place where you can see and hear and feel with great fidelity. Notice how much you can see, letting the wisdom from within guide the visual display that you see in front of you. Visualize it, feel it, enjoy it. The images are often up close and in full, rich color. See yourself living out a scenario that gives you tingles in your spine. You can zoom in on that glorious, fun-filled, exciting future that you see. It allows you to do what you love to do and accomplish what you believe in. 4. Recall Your Deep Values. List your deep values as you watch your mission scenario. Notice how your values and your images can fit together with a remarkable consistency. 5. Ask for Help from Your Inner Wisdom. Ask for your inner wisdom, the higher powers, or God to guide your grand vision. This vision is going to be more of a discovery than a creation. Let it come to you. Ask and it will come. Take the time to see and hear those aspects of life that unify into a whole that you feel a powerful passion for. See some more images. See some time going by. See various bright, radiant, up-close, colorful images of what it is that you could create in your life. They can begin going in a certain direction, coalescing and representing many of your current goals, some of the things that you want. See them develop into a kind of grand visionary collection of images that represents your purpose and your mission. 6. Do What It Takes. Take whatever time you need—five minutes, an hour, a whole afternoon. This is your life, your future that you are creating. When you finish, write it down. Your images are so attractive, you have some glimpses of what your mission is. Now you can develop it more fully. Ask the visionary in you to give you the gift of this grand vision. Now that you can see your grand vision of what you want to contribute to, you can make that vision into a cause to work for—a specific direction to channel your efforts to.
NLP Comprehensive (NLP: New Technology: The New Technology)
Know Yourself: Are You a Freezer, Flyer, or Fighter? How avoidance coping manifests for you will depend on what your dominant response type is when you’re facing something you’d rather avoid. There are three possible responses: freezing, fleeing, or fighting. We’ve evolved these reactions because they’re useful for encounters with predators. Like other animals, when we encounter a predator, we’re wired to freeze to avoid provoking attention, run away, or fight. Most people are prone to one of the three responses more so than the other two. Therefore, you can think of yourself as having a “type,” like a personality type. Identify your type using the descriptions in the paragraphs that follow. Bear in mind that your type is just your most dominant pattern. Sometimes you’ll respond in one of the other two ways. Freezers virtually freeze when they don’t want to do something. They don’t move forward or backward; they just stop in their tracks. If a coworker or loved one nags a freezer to do something the freezer doesn’t want to do, the freezer will tend not to answer. Freezers may be prone to stonewalling in relationships, which is a term used to describe when people flat-out refuse to discuss certain topics that their partner wants to talk about, such as a decision to have another baby or move to a new home. Flyers are people who are prone to fleeing when they don’t want to do something. They might physically leave the house if a relationship argument gets too tense and they’d rather not continue the discussion. Flyers can be prone to serial relationships because they’d rather escape than work through tricky issues. When flyers want to avoid doing something, they tend to busy themselves with too much activity as a way to justify their avoidance. For example, instead of dealing with their own issues, flyers may overfill their children’s schedules so that they’re always on the run, taking their kids from activity to activity. Fighters tend to respond to anxiety by working harder. Fighters are the anxiety type that is least prone to avoidance coping: however, they still do it in their own way. When fighters have something that they’d rather not deal with, they will often work themselves into the ground but avoid dealing with the crux of the problem. When a strategy isn’t working, fighters don’t like to admit it and will keep hammering away. They tend to avoid getting the outside input they need to move forward. They may avoid acting on others’ advice if doing so is anxiety provoking, even when deep down they know that taking the advice is necessary. Instead, they will keep trying things their own way. A person’s dominant anxiety type—freezer, flyer, or fighter—will often be consistent for both work and personal relationships, but not always. Experiment: Once you’ve identified your type, think about a situation you’re facing currently in which you’re acting to type. What’s an alternative coping strategy you could try? For example, your spouse is nagging you to do a task involving the computer. You feel anxious about it due to your general lack of confidence with all things computer related. If you’re a freezer, you’d normally just avoid answering when asked when you’re going to do the task. How could you change your reaction?
Alice Boyes (The Anxiety Toolkit: Strategies for Fine-Tuning Your Mind and Moving Past Your Stuck Points)
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Glenn Eichler
Ellen Braun, an accomplished agile manager, noticed that different behaviors emerge over time as telltale signs of a team’s emotional maturity, a key component in their ability to adjust as things happen to them and to get to the tipping point when “an individual’s self interest shifts to alignment with the behaviors that support team achievement” (Braun 2010). It is better to know some of the questions than all of the answers. —James Thurber Team Dynamics Survey Ellen created a list of survey questions she first used as personal reflection while she observed teams in action. Using these questions the same way, as a pathway to reflection, an agile coach can gain insight into potential team problems or areas for emotional growth. Using them with the team will be more insightful, perhaps as material for a retrospective where the team has the time and space to chew on the ideas that come up. While the team sprints, though, mull them over on your own, and notice what they tell you about team dynamics (Braun 2010). • How much does humor come into day-to-day interaction within the team? • What are the initial behaviors that the team shows in times of difficulty and stress? • How often are contradictory views raised by team members (including junior team members)? • When contradictory views are raised by team members, how often are they fully discussed? • Based on the norms of the team, how often do team members compromise in the course of usual team interactions (when not forced by circumstances)? • To what extent can any team member provide feedback to any other team member (think about negative and positive feedback)? • To what extent does any team member actually provide feedback to any other team member? • How likely would it be that a team member would discuss issues with your performance or behavior with another team member without giving feedback to you directly (triangulating)? • To what extent do you as an individual get support from your team on your personal career goals (such as learning a new skill from a team member)? • How likely would you be to ask team members for help if it required your admission that you were struggling with a work issue? • How likely would you be to share personal information with the team that made you feel vulnerable? • To what extent is the team likely to bring into team discussions an issue that may create conflict or disagreement within the team? • How likely or willing are you to bring into a team discussion an issue that is likely to have many different conflicting points of view? • If you bring an item into a team discussion that is likely to have many different conflicting points of view, how often does the team reach a consensus that takes into consideration all points of view and feels workable to you? • Can you identify an instance in the past two work days when you felt a sense of warmth or inclusion within the context of your team? • Can you identify an instance in the past two days when you felt a sense of disdain or exclusion within the context of your team? • How much does the team make you feel accountable for your work? Mulling over these questions solo or posing them to the team will likely generate a lot of raw material to consider. When you step back from the many answers, perhaps one or two themes jump out at you, signaling the “big things” to address.
Lyssa Adkins (Coaching Agile Teams: A Companion for ScrumMasters, Agile Coaches, and Project Managers in Transition)
He sent messages to all fifteen of my former suitors, asking if they were still interested in marrying me-“ “Oh, my God,” Alex breathed. “-and, if they were, he volunteered to send me to them for a few days, properly chaperoned by Lucinda,” Elizabeth recited in that same strangled tone, “so that we could both discover if we still suit.” “Oh, my God,” Alex said again, with more force. “Twelve of them declined,” she continued, and she watched Alex wince in embarrassed sympathy. “But three of them agreed, and now I am to be sent off to visit them. Since Lucinda can’t return from Devon until I go to visit the third-suitor, who’s in Scotland,” she said, almost choking on the word as she applied it to Ian Thornton, “I shall have to pass Berta off as my aunt to the first two.” “Berta!” Bentner burst out in disgust. “Your aunt? The silly widgeon’s afraid of her shadow.” Threatened by another uncontrollable surge of mirth, Elizabeth looked at both her friends. “Berta is the least of my problems However, do continue invoking God’s name, for it’s going to take a miracle to survive this.” “Who are the suitors?” Alex asked, her alarm increased by Elizabeth’s odd smile as she replied, “I don’t recall two of them. It’s quite remarkable, isn’t it,” she continued with dazed mirth, “that two grown men could have met a young girl at her debut and hared off to her brother to ask for her hand, and she can’t remember anything about them, except one of their names.” “No,” Alex said cautiously, “it isn’t remarkable. You were, are, very beautiful, and that is the way it’s done. A young girl makes her debut at seventeen, and gentlemen look her over, often in the most cursory fashion, and decide if they want her. Then they apply for her hand. I can’t think it is reasonable or just to betroth a young girl to someone with whom she’s scarcely acquainted and then expect her to develop a lasting affection for him after she is wed, but the ton does regard it as the civilized way to manage marriages.” “It’s actually quite the opposite-it’s rather barbaric, when you reflect on it,” Elizabeth stated, willing to be diverted from her personal calamity by a discussion of almost anything else. “Elizabeth, who are the suitors? Perhaps I know of them and can help you remember.” Elizabeth sighed. “The first is Sir Francis Belhaven-“ “You’re joking!” Alex exploded, drawing an alarmed glance from Bentner. When Elizabeth merely lifted her delicate brows and waited for information, Alex continued angrily, “Why, he’s-he’s a dreadful old roué. There’s no polite way to describe him. He’s stout and balding, and his debauchery is a joke among the ton because he’s so flagrant and foolish. He’s an unparalleled pinchpenny to boot-a nipsqueeze!” “At least we have that last in common,” Elizabeth tried to tease, but her glance was on Bentner, who in his agitation was deflowering an entire healthy bush. “Benter,” she said gently, touched by how much he obviously cared for her plight, “you can tell the dead blooms from the live ones by their color.” “Who’s the second suitor?” Alex persisted in growing alarm. “Lord John Marchman.” When Alex looked blank, Elizabeth added, “The Earl of Canford.” Comprehension dawned, and Alex nodded slowly. “I’m not acquainted with him, but I have heard of him.” “Well, don’t keep me in suspense,” Elizabeth said, choking back a laugh, because everything seemed more absurd, more unreal by the moment.
Judith McNaught (Almost Heaven (Sequels, #3))
I love it when you can’t control yourself,” she whispered. “I love having you at my mercy. You have no idea…how much I enjoy seeing Dom the Almighty brought low.” He barely registered her words. What she was doing felt so good. So bloody damned good. If she stroked him much more… “I want to be inside you.” He gripped her wrist. “Please, Jane…” Her sensuous smile faltered. “You’ve never said ‘please’ to me before. Not in your whole life.” “Really?” Had he only ever issued orders? If so, no wonder she’d refused him last night. Perhaps it was time to show her she didn’t have to seduce him to gain control. That he could give up his control freely…to her, at least. “Then let me say it now. Please, Jane, make love to me. If you don’t mind.” She stared at him. “I…I don’t know what you mean.” He nodded to his cock, which looked downright ecstatic over the idea. “Get up on your knees and fit me inside you.” Realizing he’d just issued yet another order, he added, “Please. If you want.” Jane got that sultry look on her face again. Like the little seductress she was rapidly showing herself to be, she rose up and then came down on him. By degrees. Very slow degrees. He had trouble breathing. “Am I hurting you?” Her smile broadened as she shimmied down another inch. “Not really.” Stifling a curse, he clutched her arms. “You just…enjoy torturing me.” “Absolutely,” she said and moved his hands to cover her breasts. He was more than happy to oblige her unspoken request, happy to thumb her nipples and watch as her lovely mouth fell open and a moan of pure pleasure escaped her. His cock swelled, and he thrust up involuntarily. “Please…” he said hoarsely. “Please, Jane…” With a choked laugh, she sheathed herself on him. Then her eyes went wide. “Oh, that feels amazing.” “It would feel more amazing if you…would move,” he rasped, though the mere sensation of being buried inside her was making him insane. When she arched an eyebrow, he added, “Please.” “I could get to like this,” she said teasingly. “The begging.” But even as he groaned, she began to move, like the sensual creature that she was. His sweetheart undulated atop him, her head thrown back and her eyes sliding closed, and for the first time in his life, he was happy to give himself up to someone else’s control. To relish her pleasure, which was also his pleasure. Somehow he’d stumbled into paradise, ruled by his own personal angel. His own personal siren. “You like having me…in your power, do you?” he said. “Yes, oh, yes.” Her eyes brightened as she rode him, harder, faster. “Say it again.” “What?” He could hardly think for watching her take him. For being inside her so deeply he fancied he could feel her heart, her very soul. “Please.” Her face was flushed, rapt. “Say…’please’ again.” “Please.” Why had he never thought to say it before? This was all he’d ever wanted--to have the enthralling, intoxicating Jane in his arms, in his life. Forever. A “please” from time to time was little enough to give for that. “Please, my wanton angel.” He clutched her close, his rhythm quickening. “Please…be mine. Please…marry me.” His release approached like a carriage thundering toward the heavens. Toward paradise. And as the blood roared in his ears, he plunged his cock deeply and emptied himself inside her, crying, “Please…Jane…love me!” “I do.” With a hoarse cry of her own, she strained against him and found her own release, milking his cock with the force of it. “I do, my darling…I do.
Sabrina Jeffries (If the Viscount Falls (The Duke's Men, #4))
Dear, What’s the Point of it All? What is the point of being nice? When you do not know what you are going to get from it? Knowing eventually sooner rather than later someone and maybe that person you are being nice to will turn their back on you. I always have to stay grounded and focused. When I am there for people, I feel like I am always punished for it. I am always treated as if I committed a crime. I was there for my mom; however, she was killing me slowly but surely. Like my mom, I noticed that when people get themselves in some shit, they get stuck in their own mess. They are confident that they do not have to deal with the consequences—because they know the ‘kind’ person will bail them out. What’s the point of being kind? Like my mom and the officer, there are so many people in the world who are judgmental and tainted because of their selfish needs. What’s the point of my life? Here I am in a library filled with many books. I can read them and go anywhere I want to in my mind, but after I close the book, I will have to snap out of my fantasy world and welcome the cruel cold world, which is reality. If I was a book, I would be better off left on the shelf. There is no excitement in my life—only struggles. What’s the point of living and loving life when the only thing I do is read between the lines and tread carefully? Come to think about it, I am a book that nobody can understand or read. They think they know what is best for me, but if they only take the time to listen, I would be so happy to tell them about me and my needs and wants. My actions scream for attention, but time after time, I am ignored. Sadly, without a care, they were quick to rip out the pages. Yet, once again, nobody noticed me. What’s the point of it all when I never had an opportunity to make a mistake? If I did one thing wrong, they would give up on me and send me to one home after another. I’ve always been fully exposed and had to walk in a line filled with sharp curves from disappointment to disappointment. Sorrow is my aura, and sadness hugs me tightly. It is hard to cry when my eyes are closed shut by the barbed wire fence of my eyelashes as they prohibit tears from falling. What’s the point of complicating my life? I am always back to where I started, and then ... I relive the same patterns, but on a more difficult journey. I believe when you put yourself in your own mess that you should clean it up and start over. What’s wrong with that? Nothing. However, when someone else puts you in their mess, you do not know how to clean up the mess they’ve made. You do not know how to start over because you do not know where to begin. I look at it this way; it is like telling a dead person he/she can start over. How so, when that person’s life no longer exists? I know my life isn’t over. However, I am lost in a maze my mom set up for herself—and she too is lost in her own maze. When a person gets lost in their own maze, they are really fucked up. However, this maze shouldn’t be left for me to figure out. Unfortunately, I am in it, and I have to find my way out one way or another. What’s the point of taking Kace from me? He was safe and in good hands. Now he is worse off with people who are abusing him. He didn’t ask for this—I didn’t either. He deserves so much better. Again, what is the point of it all? What’s the point of making me suffer? Do you get a kick out of it? What are you trying to accomplish? I am trying to understand; what is the point of it all? What is the point? I don’t know why I am here.
Charlena E. Jackson (Pinwheels and Dandelions)
ever. Amen. Thank God for self-help books. No wonder the business is booming. It reminds me of junior high school, where everybody was afraid of the really cool kids because they knew the latest, most potent putdowns, and were not afraid to use them. Dah! But there must be another reason that one of the best-selling books in the history of the world is Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus by John Gray. Could it be that our culture is oh so eager for a quick fix? What a relief it must be for some people to think “Oh, that’s why we fight like cats and dogs, it is because he’s from Mars and I am from Venus. I thought it was just because we’re messed up in the head.” Can you imagine Calvin Consumer’s excitement and relief to get the video on “The Secret to her Sexual Satisfaction” with Dr. GraySpot, a picture chart, a big pointer, and an X marking the spot. Could that “G” be for “giggle” rather than Dr. “Graffenberg?” Perhaps we are always looking for the secret, the gold mine, the G-spot because we are afraid of the real G-word: Growth—and the energy it requires of us. I am worried that just becoming more educated or well-read is chopping at the leaves of ignorance but is not cutting at the roots. Take my own example: I used to be a lowly busboy at 12 East Restaurant in Florida. One Christmas Eve the manager fired me for eating on the job. As I slunk away I muttered under my breath, “Scrooge!” Years later, after obtaining a Masters Degree in Psychology and getting a California license to practice psychotherapy, I was fired by the clinical director of a psychiatric institute for being unorthodox. This time I knew just what to say. This time I was much more assertive and articulate. As I left I told the director “You obviously have a narcissistic pseudo-neurotic paranoia of anything that does not fit your myopic Procrustean paradigm.” Thank God for higher education. No wonder colleges are packed. What if there was a language designed not to put down or control each other, but nurture and release each other to grow? What if you could develop a consciousness of expressing your feelings and needs fully and completely without having any intention of blaming, attacking, intimidating, begging, punishing, coercing or disrespecting the other person? What if there was a language that kept us focused in the present, and prevented us from speaking like moralistic mini-gods? There is: The name of one such language is Nonviolent Communication. Marshall Rosenberg’s Nonviolent Communication provides a wealth of simple principles and effective techniques to maintain a laser focus on the human heart and innocent child within the other person, even when they have lost contact with that part of themselves. You know how it is when you are hurt or scared: suddenly you become cold and critical, or aloof and analytical. Would it not be wonderful if someone could see through the mask, and warmly meet your need for understanding or reassurance? What I am presenting are some tools for staying locked onto the other person’s humanness, even when they have become an alien monster. Remember that episode of Star Trek where Captain Kirk was turned into a Klingon, and Bones was freaking out? (I felt sorry for Bones because I’ve had friends turn into Cling-ons too.) But then Spock, in his cool, Vulcan way, performed a mind meld to determine that James T. Kirk was trapped inside the alien form. And finally Scotty was able to put some dilithium crystals into his phaser and destroy the alien cloaking device, freeing the captain from his Klingon form. Oh, how I wish that, in my youth or childhood,
Kelly Bryson (Don't Be Nice, Be Real)
• No matter how open we as a society are about formerly private matters, the stigma around our emotional struggles remains formidable. We will talk about almost anyone about our physical health, even our sex lives, but bring depression, anxiety or grief , and the expression on the other person would probably be "get me out of this conversation" • We can distract our feelings with too much wine, food or surfing the internet, • Therapy is far from one-sided; it happens in a parallel process. Everyday patients are opening up questions that we have to think about for ourselves, • "The only way out is through" the only way to get out of the tunnel is to go through, not around it • Study after study shows that the most important factor in the success of your treatment is your relationship with the therapist, your experience of "feeling felt" • Attachment styles are formed early in childhood based on our interactions with our caregivers. Attachment styles are significant because they play out in peoples relationships too, influencing the kind of partners they pick, (stable or less stable), how they behave in a relationship (needy, distant, or volatile) and how the relationship tend to end (wistfully, amiably, or with an explosion) • The presenting problem, the issue somebody comes with, is often just one aspect of a larger problem, if not a red herring entirely. • "Help me understand more about the relationship" Here, here's trying to establish what’s known as a therapeutic alliance, trust that has to develop before any work can get done. • In early sessions is always more important for patients to feel understood than it is for them to gain any insight or make changes. • We can complain for free with a friend or family member, People make faulty narratives to make themselves feel better or look better in the moment, even thought it makes them feel worse over time, and that sometimes they need somebody else to read between the lines. • Here-and-now, it is when we work on what’s happening in the room, rather than focusing on patient's stories. • She didn't call him on his bullshit, which this makes patients feel unsafe, like children's whose parent's don’t hold them accountable • What is this going to feel like to the person I’m speaking to? • Neuroscientists discovered that humans have brain cells called mirror neurons, that cause them to mimic others, and when people are in a heightened state of emotion, a soothing voice can calm their nervous system and help them stay present • Don’t judge your feelings; notice them. Use them as your map. Don’t be afraid of the truth. • The things we protest against the most are often the very things we need to look at • How easy it is, I thought, to break someone’s heart, even when you take great care not to. • The purpose on inquiring about people's parent s is not to join them in blaming, judging or criticizing their parents. In fact it is not about their parents at all. It is solely about understanding how their early experiences informed who they are as adults so that they can separate the past from the present (and not wear psychological clothing that no longer fits) • But personality disorders lie on a spectrum. People with borderline personality disorder are terrified of abandonment, but for some that might mean feeling anxious when their partners don’t respond to texts right away; for others that may mean choosing to stay in volatile, dysfunctional relationships rather than being alone. • In therapy we aim for self compassion (am I a human?) versus self esteem (Am I good or bad: a judgment) • The techniques we use are a bit like the type of brain surgery in which the patient remains awake throughout the procedure, as the surgeons operate, they keep checking in with the patient: can you feel this? can you say this words? They are constantly calibrating how close they are to sensitive regions of the brain, and if they hit one, they back up so as not to damage it.
Lori Gottlieb (Maybe You Should Talk to Someone)
Have you ever rejected someone romantically? Even if it required as little effort as swiping your finger, think of how much thought and time went behind it. What were the parameters you were considering behind accepting or rejecting? How stupidly vague, impersonal, and shallow were those parameters? That’s how much thought goes behind rejecting someone. Not much. How can you take a rejection personally when it doesn’t take more than a few seconds to happen? Do you think your whole existence can be understood, judged and adequately summarised in a matter of seconds? Fuck, no!
Shwetabh Gangwar (The Rudest Book Ever)
Looking back over the past eight decades—my lifetime—I agree with any and all who have said that life is short. “It seems like only yesterday” may be a cliché, but to the old person who reminisces about days gone by it is a truism. As for the here and now, the older one gets, the faster time seems to glide by. In addition to that, not only is the dawning of a new day the first day of the rest of your life, it also means that another day of your allotted time on earth has ended. These observations lead to a conclusion that it makes eminent good sense to take care of yourself so that you can enjoy the days ahead as much as possible, and also that you should do all you can to influence the ones you love to take care of themselves.
Don Petterson (Old Man on a Bicycle: A Ride Across America and How to Realize a More Enjoyable Old Age)
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Even if it can be described at a physiochemical level, our understanding of what “physiochemical” means will transform as we get more sophisticated in our attempts to understand consciousness. Even if it is an entirely reducible phenomena, ideas still inhabit us like personalities, and they inhabit us as a collective like personalities as well. You can think of the entire Internet as a place where ideas embodied in cyberspace are having a war, and it’s not much different than the war of Gods in heaven, which has been taking place since there’s been human beings. If you think of individuals as neurons in a web, you can think of Gods as entities that inhabit that web. They’re embodied ideas that persist across long periods of time, and they do go to war; that’s how polytheism turns into monotheism across time. Sometimes these wars are real, they aren’t just conceptual; people actually die to determine which God is going to rule. So there’s a hyperspace consisting of networked minds in which these archetypal ideas exist, at the same time that they exist in each person. You’re a mirror of the broader social reality. You’re a node in it, but you’re a mirror of it as well.
Jordan B. Peterson
Cash For Scrap Cars - A Fast and Efficient Way to Get Rid of Your Old Vehicle Cash For Scrap Cars is an organization that purchases scrap cars from honest citizens and sells them to approved dealers. They are also known as Buttercup scrappers, because the vehicles they buy are salvaged from the Buttercup River in Townsville, Washington. When you purchase a salvage car at Cash For Scrap Car, you're actually helping to repair our environment by removing older, used vehicles that would otherwise be dumped and never recycled. In addition, you're helping yourself make some extra money, because once you sell a vehicle to them, they will pay you the retail price plus a fee for disposition. By choosing a car that needs work or isn't worth much, you can easily make a few hundred dollars-just think of all the scrap cars they have to get rid of! Now, what is so great about the cash for scrap cars townsville program? It is a pretty simple program that only requires a small fee to join, and an existing driving record. You can easily find a few legitimate companies in your area that will take your old wreck as payment for their services. Plus, you can easily find local companies that offer the same cash for cars that you can find online. Just use your favorite search engine to look for legitimate companies in your area. But why should you choose the cash for scrap cars townsville area? There are actually several reasons. One reason is that it is not as heavily regulated as many other areas of the country. This means that you can get away with charging very high prices for salvaged cars. Many people find this appealing, because it allows them to earn a bit more money in a short period of time without spending too much to repair the car and make it as good as new. Unfortunately, the hidden costs of this system are what make it less than desirable for most people. The most obvious reason for choosing the cash for scrap cars townsville area of Arizona is the cash for car wreck value. Every vehicle that is disposed has to undergo a thorough inspection and evaluation before it is sold. Some of these assessments are performed by professionals who are paid to make sure that the cars are worth as much as they are worth. This ensures that buyers receive fair market value for their trash. If you do decide to go with a company that offers cash for vehicle removal in Arizona, you may be subject to some laws regarding the collection of additional payments from the person who is responsible for repossessing the vehicle. While it may be legal to collect these extra payments, it is against the law to require someone to pay for the entire cost of the towing and storage before the vehicle is removed from the property. Even if you are able to settle these collections in one lump sum, the time it takes to pay for the service can really add up. If you don't mind waiting a few weeks for the money to come in then it could be a good option for you. While these laws make it against the law for any company to demand an up front fee for the services of vehicle removal and disposition, they do make it legal to charge an administrative fee for processing those transactions. When you consider how much time and effort goes into getting rid of vehicles that are impounded, the small fee could really make a huge difference to you and the process of getting rid of an old vehicle. There are also companies out there that allow you to use the Internet to place an instant cash for old vehicle in your hands as soon as you agree to have this transaction processed. This allows you to skip all of the hassles that come along with physically retrieving your vehicle in town and having to wait in line at a variety of establishments.
PRINCIPLE: LEADING UP THE CHAIN If your boss isn’t making a decision in a timely manner or providing necessary support for you and your team, don’t blame the boss. First, blame yourself. Examine what you can do to better convey the critical information for decisions to be made and support allocated. Leading up the chain of command requires tactful engagement with the immediate boss (or in military terms, higher headquarters) to obtain the decisions and support necessary to enable your team to accomplish its mission and ultimately win. To do this, a leader must push situational awareness up the chain of command. Leading up the chain takes much more savvy and skill than leading down the chain. Leading up, the leader cannot fall back on his or her positional authority. Instead, the subordinate leader must use influence, experience, knowledge, communication, and maintain the highest professionalism. While pushing to make your superior understand what you need, you must also realize that your boss must allocate limited assets and make decisions with the bigger picture in mind. You and your team may not represent the priority effort at that particular time. Or perhaps the senior leadership has chosen a different direction. Have the humility to understand and accept this. One of the most important jobs of any leader is to support your own boss—your immediate leadership. In any chain of command, the leadership must always present a united front to the troops. A public display of discontent or disagreement with the chain of command undermines the authority of leaders at all levels. This is catastrophic to the performance of any organization. As a leader, if you don’t understand why decisions are being made, requests denied, or support allocated elsewhere, you must ask those questions up the chain. Then, once understood, you can pass that understanding down to your team. Leaders in any chain of command will not always agree. But at the end of the day, once the debate on a particular course of action is over and the boss has made a decision—even if that decision is one you argued against—you must execute the plan as if it were your own. When leading up the chain of command, use caution and respect. But remember, if your leader is not giving the support you need, don’t blame him or her. Instead, reexamine what you can do to better clarify, educate, influence, or convince that person to give you what you need in order to win. The major factors to be aware of when leading up and down the chain of command are these:
Jocko Willink (Extreme Ownership: How U.S. Navy SEALs Lead and Win)
How to Choose a Wedding Planner? – Nova DJs Sydney Are you interested in hiring a wedding planner? Then it’s time to choose the best fit for your party, and I’m saying it’s a complicated task. It’s not just hiring the first company with a beautiful website and beautiful pictures on the Internet. After all, it’s easy to do. Organizing a perfect wedding is hard! But follow our tips and choose the ideal wedding advice! Salient Feature: The ideal mentor should be a cheerful person, someone charming, who leaves you to give ideas and talk freely about the great day. You have to be a friend, be someone you trust. Imagine, it would be months of organizing, holding meetings, and planning the details together. At least a trace of sympathy is required. It should also be organized and committed to its work. Knowledge should be comprehensive with knowledge in various areas of wedding, such as sound, lighting, wedding dresses, buffet, etc., everything to quickly identify what is best for your wedding. Choose Based on Opinion The Internet is an inexhaustible source of information. And when it comes to finding out the truth about suppliers, this is the best place. View testimonials from the bride and groom who have already used the planner to find out their impressions and results. Take recommendations and avoid people who have a lot of complaints. Marriage History Check out the types of weddings the planner has helped put together. Do they fit what you want? For example, if you dream of a rustic wedding, hiring a consultant who does many luxurious weddings will not combine much and delay the process of organizing the wedding. When the planner is familiar with his style, finding the best suppliers is much faster and more effective. Trust the Planner As we say, the planner is the one you should trust and feel comfortable with while organizing the wedding. This is a person who has come to add and help, not a foot behind your opinion. Trust the professional with all your heart, that everything will be perfect! Be Concerned with 100% Preparation While some people don’t trust, others can imagine too much! What could never happen! The planner is the wedding assistant, not the one who has to do it all by himself. Stay on top of whatever you are doing. work together with him. Together, you will conquer the dream! Beware of Cheap Options You always have one company which is much cheaper than others. But as the saying goes, “You get what you paid for.” Instead of charging you the rate, the consultant may include the amount in the suppliers’ budget, making everything a little more expensive than the others and making the expense practically the same. so watch out! Remember the hint of the opinion of the bride and groom wedding planner for a destination wedding For those who are going to get married outside the city or country, it is important to have a consultant. However, he or she should know at least a little bit about the place where you intend to get married in order to accommodate the culture of the place to the style of wedding you expect. Knowledge of suppliers, in this case, will be a significant advantage for you in ensuring that everything goes according to plan. Check here for some references for the best wedding vendors and Wedding DJs in NSW, Australia.
Nova DJs
It is often hard for you to determine what it is that you want or need, so you struggle to make decisions or speak up for yourself. When you are in a relationship, you find yourself regularly doing what the other person wants and you genuinely feel that this is what you want, too. You do not spend any time considering how your wants or needs may vary from the other person’s. You regularly experience difficulties with communication because you struggle to uncover exactly what it is that you are thinking or feeling. Sometimes, you simply say nothing because you don’t know what to say or how to say it. Valuing yourself is challenging. You tend to value the approval of other people more than you value yourself in general. It is difficult for you to trust in yourself and in your abilities. You have a poor sense of self-esteem. You may experience severe fears of abandonment or neglect from others. This fear may be so extensive that you experience an obsessive need to be approved by others. Often, this fear gives you feelings of anxiety.  When you are in a relationship, you find yourself heavily depending on that relationship. It is challenging for you to be in a relationship and see yourself as an individual both inside and outside of that relationship. You often find yourself taking responsibility for other people’s actions. You may do so in a way that assumes the blame and allows them to blame you, or you may do so in a way that feels as though you can manipulate them into behaving a certain way if you change your own behaviors. Enforcing boundaries between yourself and others is challenging for you. You often find yourself overstepping other people’s boundaries, while also allowing them to overstep yours. You may struggle to feel intimate with other people. You struggle to discern the difference between love and pity, and often find yourself feeling love for people whom you pity. When you are taking care of others, you find yourself constantly giving more than you get. When people do not recognize your selflessness, you feel hurt because, to you, this is your way of showing them love and it is not being appreciated or reciprocated. You seem to have a great deal of anger bottled up inside of you, but you may not know how to express it or utilize it. Instead, you keep it bottled up. Sometimes, it may “spill out” and result in episodes of rage. If it does, you find yourself doing everything you can to make up for it. It may come naturally to you to lie or be dishonest with others, and it shows up in many ways. You may lie about your feelings, or how much you really do to take care of others or other things. Often, you believe these lies are for the greater good. Anytime you attempt to assert your needs in a conversation, you find yourself feeling incredibly guilty. In most cases, you attempt to avoid asserting your needs unless you absolutely have to, and even then, you find yourself holding off. In relationships, you find yourself holding on tight to avoid losing that relationship. You may find yourself going to extreme lengths to ensure that the other person won’t leave you. You may also feel as though you cannot trust the other person not to leave, so you feel a regular state of anxiety. (This ties in with a fear of abandonment or neglect.)  You may or may not realize it, but inside, you genuinely believe that you do not have rights, that your needs to do not matter and that you cannot have access to the love and affection that you crave. You are in denial about your behaviors and beliefs. You may even find yourself denying any of the behaviors or traits that you have read on this very list.
Leah Clarke (Courage to Cure Codependency: Healthy Detachment Strategies to Overcome Jealousy in Relationships, Stop Controlling Others, Boost Your Self Esteem, and Be Codependent No More)
One of the most overlooked aspects of excellence is how much work it takes. Fame can come easily and overnight, but excellence is almost always accompanied by a crushing workload, pursued with single-minded intensity. Strenuous effort over long periods of time is a repetitive theme in the biographies of the giants, sometimes taking on mythic proportions (Michelangelo painting the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel). Even the most famous supposed exception, Mozart, illustrates the rule. He was one of the lighter spirits among the giants, but his reputation for composing effortlessly was overstated—Mozart himself complained on more than one occasion that it wasn’t as easy as it looked1—and his devotion to his work was as single-minded as Beethoven’s, who struggled with his compositions more visibly. Consider the summer of 1788. Mozart was living in a city that experienced bread riots that summer and in a country that was mobilizing for war. He was financially desperate, forced to pawn his belongings to move to cheaper rooms. He even tried to sell the pawnbroker’s tickets to get more loans. Most devastating of all, his beloved six-month old daughter died in June. And yet in June, July, and August, he completed two piano trios, a piano sonata, a violin sonata, and three symphonies, two of them among his most famous.2 It could not have been done except by someone who, as Mozart himself once put it, is “soaked in music,…immersed in it all day long.”3 Psychologists have put specific dimensions to this aspect of accomplishment. One thread of this literature, inaugurated in the early 1970s by Herbert Simon, argues that expertise in a subject requires a person to assimilate about 50,000 “chunks” of information about the subject over about 10 years of experience—simple expertise, not the mastery that is associated with great accomplishment.4 Once expertise is achieved, it is followed by thousands of hours of practice, study, labor.5 Nor is all of this work productive. What we see of the significant figures’ work is typically shadowed by an immense amount of wasted effort—most successful creators produce clunkers, sometimes far more clunkers than gems.6
Charles Murray (Human Accomplishment: The Pursuit of Excellence in the Arts and Sciences, 800 B.C. to 1950)
I’ve experienced all kinds of discrimination,” Oshima says. “Only people who’ve been discriminated against can really know how much it hurts. Each person feels the pain in his own way, each has his own scars. So I think I’m as concerned about fairness and justice as anybody. But what disgusts me even more are people who have no imagination. The kind T. S. Eliot calls hollow men. People who fill up that lack of imagination with heartless bits of straw, not even aware of what they’re doing. Callous people who throw a lot of empty words at you, trying to force you to do what you don’t want to. Like that lovely pair we just met.” He sighs and twirls the long slender pencil in his hand. “Gays, lesbians, straights, feminists, fascist pigs, communists, Hare Krishnas—none of them bother me. I don’t care what banner they raise. But what I can’t stand are hollow people. When I’m with them I just can’t bear it, and wind up saying things I shouldn’t. With those women—I should’ve just let it slide, or else called Miss Saeki and let her handle it. She would have given them a smile and smoothed things over. But I just can’t do that. I say things I shouldn’t, do things I shouldn’t do. I can’t control myself. That’s one of my weak points. Do you know why that’s a weak point of mine?” “’Cause if you take every single person who lacks much imagination seriously, there’s no end to it,” I say.
Haruki Murakami
The level of our happiness is said to decrease when we have more than seven free hours in a day. Serotonin is inert in the brains of people who suffer from depression. A person with strong willpower isn't tempted in the first place. Your willpower will be lost if you give in to negative emotions like uncertainty or doubt. When that happens, the brain takes instinctive action and tells you to try to grab the reward in front of you. As a result you may eat or drink too much or lose the motivation to do anything. Then, later, you regret those actions and feel more stress. 45% of our actions are habits rather than decisions made on the spot. To dye a dirty cloth, you must first wash it. ( a teaching of Ayurveda ) There is value to anything if you take it seriously. You often become susceptible to addictions if the rewards come quickly. People who are unable to clean up or part with their things will sometimes feel anger towards minimalists and I believe it's because some part of them is anxious about their own actions. Our present identities shouldn't constrain our future actions. The time after you get up is the time when you can concentrate the best. As the day goes by, unexpected things and distractions will happen and build up so it's best to do what you want to do in the morning. Waking up early is a must and if you lose that first battle, you will lose in all the battles. Realize that enthusiasm won't occur before you do something. You won't feel motivated unless you start acting. Amazon rules over the buying habits of so many people because its hurdles are extremely low. People's motivation will easily go away when faced with a simple hurdle. When you quit something, it's easier to quit it completely. With acquiring a habit, it's the opposite, easier to do it every day. A plan relieves you of the torment of choice. Success is a consequence and must not be a goal. The result will be burnout if you only have a target. All you need in this life is ignorance and confidence and then success is sure. Mark Twain To have a sense of self-efficacy is to believe "I can do this!". It's the belief that you can change, grow, learn and overcome new challenges. Talking about someone's talent can wait until you've exceeded the effort that that person has made. If we changed houses periodically, we would have the joy of exploring our new environment each time and there would also be the joy of gaining control over each new environment, This instinct is probably what drives curiosity and the desire for self-development. If we don't cultivate our own opportunities for development, we'll only be able to find joy in modern society's "ready-made" fun. Activities structured so that we have to "Enjoy this in this way", where the way to have fun is already decided, will eventually bore us. And then, someday, we'll be bored with ourselves. Making it a habit to seek unique opportunities for development and gaining the sense that we're always doing something new: these are things that satisfy human instinct. All that we are arises with our thoughts. With our thoughts we make the world. The Dhammapada, The Sayings of the Buddha Something that you thought was your personality can change with a simple habit. People are instinctively inclined to get bored of what they have now and pursue new things. So no matter how successful they become, they will worry and find reasons to feel uncertain. They will get used to any environment and they will get bored with it. Training in Buddhism: when cleaning is part of the training, you're taught to thoroughly eliminate rationalizations such as " this is already clean, so it doesn't have to be cleaned.
Fumio Sasaki (Hello, Habits: A Minimalist's Guide to a Better Life)
In Why Zebras Don’t Get Ulcers, Robert Sapolsky details how reactivity and your temperament are also strong predictors of how stressed-out you are likely to be. Our sensitive high reactor can be compared to a neurotic “Type A” personality. Any little thing sets them off, and once they’re going it can be hours before they settle back down. It’s easy for a high reactor to stay soaked in stress hormones for hours on end, set off by an ever-compounding series of morning traffic, meetings, bosses, co-workers, and traffic on the way home. These people set themselves off, yes, but it’s in their nature to do so. Being effectively numb to the same pressures, low-reactors can handle much more without flinching. The low reactor isn’t a psychopath, as they experience emotions and react to life-events as anyone would, but the effects of stress aren’t pronounced. It takes an extraordinary event to provoke a response, and they’re much better at turning all the coping systems off after the fact. You’d be absolutely right if you guessed that these neural and psychological differences translate to different physical outcomes. Stress is stress. Your brain is the master controller, and it doesn’t care if the threat is a third-degree burn or you clenching your teeth for 16 straight hours because you don’t know how to relax. To the high reactor, intense exercise becomes just another log on the bonfire, whereas a low reactor may not even notice.
Matt Perryman (Squat Every Day)
It's enough now. I can't tolerate this situation. I have two ways. Either rise up or suicide. I had been lived my life in very balanced way. But What the hell I have done in my life, I still don't understand. What I did? I can't take blame on my character. My character was life of me, proud of me. My work was my identity. But everything is lost. I have lost it by being open up with one stranger who spit on me too badly that I can't forget it now. Yes I'm mess & I did something else which was not my part at all. I can't forgive myself for my this behavior. Though all feelings were true, are true but on this turn I have spoiled my entire life. I can't be fine after this. Never. It's not possible. I don't know you are there or not, you may have team to do all these things. I don't know anything. I have to finish myself, otherwise this mystery will kill me. I don't know you are that person or not. You can handover this work to your people. How I come to know? I'm much disturb because of this too. I've to do something soon. Don't worry. As usual you would be safe. I have to go back & then I'll do something so that there is no question of blame on you. I have to resign from my dream, this the only way of peace for me. I can't take these things in my life. Somebody kicked out me, I became suddenly unwanted for one thing, I have said sorry but there was no value for that sorry, I never get chance, that person controlling my reputation by other's name, who never tried to give me a simple identity, I got it against what? What that person exactly want? I don't want anything, I thousand times told him. Please leave me alone. Please leave me alone. Don't try to do anything for me. You have bright people? Yes. You have extreme talent? Yes. You have smart people like you? Yes. You have excellent team? Yes. You have eye to recognize diamonds & gems? Yes. You have settlement in life? Yes. You have growth in business? Yes. You need me for your business? NO. Where we met? At business place. If you don't need me for your business then what is the use of this relationship? I have told you my definition of commitment. That will not be break. When I expressed myself you didn't like it & you informed the whole team about my deed. I don't know what you done. Now, I can't tolerate my this loss. If you would reject me on the basis of non capability that was the another part. I can't forget that phone call in my life & that rude response. I'm trying to forget it, but when I recollect that words, I recall my past. I can't take in my life, I never done in my life, no one have been kicked out me like this way, especially that person to whom I blindly believed more than anyone else. I can't take it. Sorry again for every messy thing. My mess is with me. You go away. You are not affecting by this. I know my condition better than anybody. I have to do something soon & take actions. You close everything. You have a bright future & brilliant family. You'll be safe always. Goodbye.
Xiaochen Fu is one of Richard’s former students at the Kennedy School and now a manager at the Bank of China. When she worked at Agricultural Bank of China, the third largest bank worldwide, she used this maxim to help the bank make its transition to the digital era. At a time when clients were increasingly using smartphones to conduct banking transactions, her bank still had more than 300,000 staff working at 25,000 branches around the country. Some branches found that fewer and fewer clients came in person. She and her staff were struggling to decide how they should adjust the number and location of their branches. “Then I remembered Professor Zeckhauser’s maxim. To find the extreme case, we went through regulations and procedures for all the services provided by a full-function bank branch, in order to identify which services would be very difficult or impossible to deliver online. (For example, the government forbids third-party couriers to deliver physical gold, so clients who want to buy physical gold products must go to branches.) After finding all such services, and considering the needs and preferences of clients served at different branches (for example, senior clients and rural area clients still prefer face-to-face financial services), it became much clearer which branches should be closed, and which ones should be saved. The planning project proved to be cost-efficient, and allowed the bank to adapt to the digital age and better meet the needs of our clients. I reckon that the maxim gave me not only the tools but also the courage to deal with such complicated conditions.” Xiaochen’s account identifies two critical benefits a maxim may bring. It can help you focus on how to approach a problem, and it can give you the courage to take action when you determine the best decision. This is true for many other maxims in this book.
Dan Levy (Maxims for Thinking Analytically: The wisdom of legendary Harvard Professor Richard Zeckhauser)
Personally, I suck at efficiency (doing things quickly). To compensate and cope, here’s my 8-step process for maximizing efficacy (doing the right things): Wake up at least 1 hour before you have to be at a computer screen. Email is the mind-killer. Make a cup of tea (I like pu-erh) and sit down with a pen/pencil and paper. Write down the 3 to 5 things—and no more—that are making you the most anxious or uncomfortable. They’re often things that have been punted from one day’s to-do list to the next, to the next, to the next, and so on. Most important usually equals most uncomfortable, with some chance of rejection or conflict. For each item, ask yourself: “If this were the only thing I accomplished today, would I be satisfied with my day?” “Will moving this forward make all the other to-dos unimportant or easier to knock off later?” Put another way: “What, if done, will make all of the rest easier or irrelevant?” Look only at the items you’ve answered “yes” to for at least one of these questions. Block out at 2 to 3 hours to focus on ONE of them for today. Let the rest of the urgent but less important stuff slide. It will still be there tomorrow. TO BE CLEAR: Block out at 2 to 3 HOURS to focus on ONE of them for today. This is ONE BLOCK OF TIME. Cobbling together 10 minutes here and there to add up to 120 minutes does not work. No phone calls or social media allowed. If you get distracted or start procrastinating, don’t freak out and downward-spiral; just gently come back to your ONE to-do. Congratulations! That’s it. This is the only way I can create big outcomes despite my never-ending impulse to procrastinate, nap, and otherwise fritter away days with bullshit. If I have 10 important things to do in a day, it’s 100% certain nothing important will get done that day. On the other hand, I can usually handle one must-do item and block out my lesser behaviors for 2 to 3 hours a day. It doesn’t take much to seem superhuman and appear “successful” to nearly everyone around you. In fact, you just need one rule: What you do is more important than how you do everything else, and doing something well does not make it important. If you consistently feel the counterproductive need for volume and doing lots of stuff, put these on a Post-it note: Being busy is a form of laziness—lazy thinking and indiscriminate action. Being busy is most often used as a guise for avoiding the few critically important but uncomfortable actions.
Timothy Ferriss (Tools of Titans: The Tactics, Routines, and Habits of Billionaires, Icons, and World-Class Performers)
Being responsible front of the other. (part1) We live in a historical period which, without too many difficulties, can be defined as a transition period. In many respects, in fact, the world as it appeared a few decades ago has almost completely disappeared. In its place, however, no paradigm that can be said to be truly new has yet materialized. The era to come, which always seems to be on the verge of a future driven by perhaps too naively acclaimed technological development, is as if it were slowed down by ideas, visions and practices that still belong to the past. Take for example the urgent need to convert industrial production, but also individual consumption, through sustainable, ecological, greener and more aware practices. It is our own planet that requires us to make a change in this sense: climate change is there for all to see, but the political institutions that should deal with the issue are unable to be decided and united to stem the problem. We know that the resources we have are limited but we continue to exploit them even though there are already alternatives, so we squander what nature can offer us in a year well before this year is over because we still believe in the mad and blind race of progress. We also take the incredible technological development that information technology has made possible. We can store an incredible amount of information in devices that we can put in our pockets, we have at our fingertips practically much of all the knowledge that humanity has produced throughout its history, but ignorance continues to spread like a river in full. The areas in which it is possible to recognize that much the current historical period is a period of transition are still many others, from the political one, with the crisis of representative democracies but also with the absence of a real alternative, to the economic one, social, with the giants of the web that increasingly impoverish small businesses, thus contributing to widening the gap, now almost unbridgeable, between the few who have too much and the many who have less and less. Or with the appearance of a new precious commodity: our personal data that is exchanged too lightly, as if they were a traditional market product. In this framework, already quite unstable in itself, the Covid-19 pandemic, directly or indirectly, is also radically changing our sociality. In fact, the spread of the virus has highlighted not only the fragility of the world economic-social system, in which if you break a link in the chain it is the whole chain that breaks, but it has also made clear, by difference, how much the our way of relating to others, even the most banal, even the most everyday. Especially in a country like ours, which has made conviviality its distinctive feature. What seemed natural to us, like hugging and greeting each other with a kiss with an acquaintance or going to a concert piled on top of each other, now that we are discouraged - if not forbidden - takes on even more value. Probably a value that we didn't even know, so obvious and taken for granted, was there before. In other words: we only discover what our social freedom was worth now that it is being restricted to us. And we discover it, precisely, by difference, by comparing what we could have done before with what we must do now. In this regard, I would like to ask a question: why should all of us accept that our way of life, our daily habits and our social freedom are limited? The question is deliberately provocative. His answer, quite obvious. In some cases, however, even the question whose answer seems obvious and obvious must still be formulated. It must be formulated in order to attempt to review the question posed in a clearer and more profound way, that is, to better understand the underlying reasons. Therefore, although the answer is evident as well as common sense, I believe that asking this question can help to better understand some intrinsic reasons.
Corina Abdulahm Negura
Happiness Habits I have a series of tricks I use to try and be happier in the moment. At first, they were silly and difficult and required a lot of attention, but now some of them have become second nature. By doing them religiously, I’ve managed to increase my happiness level quite a bit. The obvious one is meditation—insight meditation. Working toward a specific purpose on it, which is to try and understand how my mind works. [7] Just being very aware in every moment. If I catch myself judging somebody, I can stop myself and say, “What’s the positive interpretation of this?” I used to get annoyed about things. Now I always look for the positive side of it. It used to take a rational effort. It used to take a few seconds for me to come up with a positive. Now I can do it sub-second. [7] I try to get more sunlight on my skin. I look up and smile. [7] Every time you catch yourself desiring something, say, “Is it so important to me I’ll be unhappy unless this goes my way?” You’re going to find with the vast majority of things it’s just not true. [7] I think dropping caffeine made me happier. It makes me more of a stable person. [7] I think working out every day made me happier. If you have peace of body, it’s easier to have peace of mind. [7] The more you judge, the more you separate yourself. You’ll feel good for an instant, because you feel good about yourself, thinking you’re better than someone. Later, you’re going to feel lonely. Then, you see negativity everywhere. The world just reflects your own feelings back at you. [77] Tell your friends you’re a happy person. Then, you’ll be forced to conform to it. You’ll have a consistency bias. You have to live up to it. Your friends will expect you to be a happy person. [5] Recover time and happiness by minimizing your use of these three smartphone apps: phone, calendar, and alarm clock. [11] The more secrets you have, the less happy you’re going to be. [11] Caught in a funk? Use meditation, music, and exercise to reset your mood. Then choose a new path to commit emotional energy for rest of day. [11] Hedonic adaptation is more powerful for man-made things (cars, houses, clothes, money) than for natural things (food, sex, exercise). [11] No exceptions—all screen activities linked to less happiness, all non-screen activities linked to more happiness. [11] A personal metric: how much of the day is spent doing things out of obligation rather than out of interest? [11] It’s the news’ job to make you anxious and angry. But its underlying scientific, economic, education, and conflict trends are positive. Stay optimistic. [11] Politics, academia, and social status are all zero-sum games. Positive-sum games create positive people. [11] Increase serotonin in the brain without drugs: Sunlight, exercise, positive thinking, and tryptophan.
Eric Jorgenson (The Almanack of Naval Ravikant: A Guide to Wealth and Happiness)
He was convinced that if the attack on Omando had caused such interest in the world it was not so much because of the victim’s importance, but because fear, resentment and repeated disillusion in the age of slavery and radiation death had in the end branded the hearts of millions of human beings with an edge of misanthropy, which made them follow with sympathy, and perhaps some feeling of personal re- venge, the story of '‘the man who had changed species.” He turned toward Laurent with sympathy. It was difficult not to like that generous, slightly sing-song voice, not to like that black giant who spoke so frankly about himself when he thought he was speaking only of the African fauna. inclined to a gentle skepticism which usually sufficed to protect him both against excessive illusions about human nature and against excessive doubt of it a sort of Saint Francis of Assisi, only more energetic, more dashing, more muscular he had the greatest respect for humor, because it was one of the best weapons ever forged by man for the struggle against himself. devoured by some ravenous dream of hygiene and universal health who desperately pursue a certain ideal of human decency, call it tolerance, justice or liberty The idea, too, that people who have suffered too much aren’t any longer capable of ... of complicity with you, for that’s what it amounts to. That they aren’t any longer capable of playing ball with us. The idea that they’ve somehow been spoiled once for all. It was partly on account of this idea that the German theorists of racialism preached the extermination of the Jews; they had been made to suffer too much, and therefore they could not be anything after that but enemies of the human race. A man can’t spend his life in Africa without acquiring something pretty close to a great affection for the elephants. Those great herds are, after all, the last symbol of liberty left among us. It s something that’s fast disappearing, from more points of view than one. Every time you come upon them in the open, moving their trunks and their great ears, an irresistible smile rises to your lips. I defy anyone to look upon elephants without a sense of wonder. Their very enormity, their, clumsiness, their giant stature, represent a mass of liberty that sets you dreaming. They’re . . . yes, they’re the last individuals. a trace of superiority, of condescension toward me, as though to point out to me that this was obviously something I could not understand, a private and secret world which I was not permitted to enter. Yes, there are some among us who are fighting for the independence of Africa. But why? To protect the elephants. To take the protection of African fauna into their own hands. Perhaps for them elephants are only an image of their own liberty. That suits me: liberty always suits me. Personally, I have no patience with nationalism: the new or the old, the white or the black, the red or the yellow. They aim between the eyes, just because it’s big, free and beautiful. That’s what they call a fine shot. A trophy. people have been seized by such a need for friendship and company that the dogs can’t manage it. We’ve been asking too much of them. The job has broken them down— they’ve had it. Just think how long they’ve been doing their damnedest for us, wagging their tails and holding out their paws— they’ve had enough . . .’ It’s natural: they’ve seen too much. And the people feel lonely and deserted, and they need something bigger that can really take the strain. Dogs aren’t enough any more; men need elephants. ‘Look here, my friend, for three years I was a bus conductor in Paris. I recommend it during rush hours; it gave me what you might call a knowledge of human nature— a good, solid knowledge which prompted me to change sides and go over to the elephants. there was around him an air of authenticity impossible to disregard: the authenticity of sheer physical nobility
Gary Romain
It is our destiny to transform chaos into order. If the past has not been ordered, the chaos it still constitutes haunts us. There is information—vital information—resting in the memories that affect us negatively. It is as if part of the personality is still lying latent, out in the world, making itself manifest only in emotional disruption. What is traumatic but remains inexplicable indicates that the map of the world that guides our navigation is insufficient in some vital manner. It is necessary to understand the negative well enough so that it can be circumvented as we move into the future if we do not wish to remain tormented by the past. And it is not the expression of emotion associated with unpleasant events that has curative power. It is the development of a sophisticated causal theory: Why was I at risk? What was it about the world that made it dangerous? What was I doing or not doing to contribute to my vulnerability? How can I change the value hierarchy I inhabit to take the negative into account so that I can see and understand it? How much of my old map do I have to let crumble and burn—with all the pain dying tissue produces—before I can change enough to take my full range of experience into account? Do I have the faith to step beyond what should and must die and let my new and wiser personality emerge? To some great degree, we are our assumptions. They structure the world for us. When basic axioms of faith are challenged (“People are basically good”), the foundation shakes and the walls crumble. We have every reason to avoid facing the bitter truth. But making what is—and what was—clear and fully comprehended can only protect us. If you are suffering from memories that will not stop tormenting you, there is possibility—possibility that could be your very salvation—waiting there to be discovered. If old memories still upset you, write them down carefully and completely.
Jordan B. Peterson (Beyond Order: 12 More Rules For Life)
The day-to-day horror of writing gave me a notion of tournament time. Writing novels is tedious. When will this book be finished, when will it reveal its bright and shining true self? it takes freakin’ years. At the poker table, you’re only playing a fraction of the hands, waiting for your shot. If you keep your wits, can keep from flying apart while those around you are self-destructing, devouring each other, you’re halfway there. … Let them flame out while you develop a new relationship with time, and they drift away from the table. 86-7 Coach Helen’s mantra: It’s OK to be scared, but don’t play scared. 90 [During a young adult trip to Los Vegas] I was contemplating the nickel in my hand. Before we pushed open the glass doors, what the heck, I dropped it into a one-armed bandit and won two dollars. In a dank utility room deep in the subbasements of my personality, a little man wiped his hands on his overalls and pulled the switch: More. Remembering it now, I hear a sizzling sound, like meat being thrown into a hot skillet. I didn't do risk, generally. So I thought. But I see now I'd been testing the House Rules the last few years. I'd always been a goody-goody. Study hard, obey your parents, hut-hut-hut through the training exercises of Decent Society. Then in college, now that no one was around, I started to push the boundaries, a little more each semester. I was an empty seat in lecture halls, slept late in a depressive funk, handed in term papers later and later to see how much I could get away with before the House swatted me down. Push it some more. We go to casinos to tell the everyday world that we will not submit. There are rules and codes and institutions, yes, but for a few hours in this temple of pure chaos, of random cards and inscrutable dice, we are in control of our fates. My little gambles were a way of pretending that no one was the boss of me. … The nickels poured into the basin, sweet music. If it worked once, it will work again. We hit the street. 106-8 [Matt Matros, 3x bracelet winner; wrote The Making of a Poker Player]: “One way or another you’re going to have a read, and you’re going to do something that you didn’t expect you were going to do before, right or wrong. Obviously it’s better if you’re right, but even if you’re wrong, it can be really satisfying to just have a read, a feeling, and go with it. Your gut.” I could play it safe, or I could really play. 180 Early on, you wanted to stay cool and keep out of expensive confrontations, but you also needed to feed the stack. The stack is hungry. 187 The awful knowledge that you did what you set out to do, and you would never, ever top it. It was gone the instant you put your hands on it. It was gambling. 224
Colson Whitehead (The Noble Hustle: Poker, Beef Jerky, and Death)
has tended to ignore the forces of mental healing, the psychical “will-to-health” — has failed to take into practical account the fact that, besides such medicaments as arsenic and camphor, there are other remedies to stimulate a flagging vitality; purely spiritual remedies, such as courage, self-confidence, faith, vigorous optimism. Much as our reason may revolt against the futility of the teaching of those who want to kill bacilli by “mind,” to counteract syphilitic infection by “truth,” and to nullify the disastrous effect of arteriosclerosis by “God,” we should make a great mistake were we to ignore the energy which this doctrine can furnish to one who believes in it. We should be closing our eyes to the truth were we to deny that Christian Science has achieved wonderful successes, and, by the profundity of its faith, has brought consolation to numberless persons in moments of despair. Perhaps it is but an intoxicant, is but “dope,” giving no more than a transient support to the nerves as does camphor or caffeine, and temporarily arresting the advance of disease. Still, in giving this temporary relief, it shows once more how the power of the mind can come to the help of the body.
Stefan Zweig (Mental Healers: Franz Anton Mesmer, Mary Baker Eddy, Sigmund Freud)
Direct response marketing is designed to evoke an immediate response and compel prospects to take some specific action, such as opting in to your email list, picking up the phone and calling for more information, placing an order or being directed to a web page. So what makes a direct response ad? Here are some of the main characteristics: It’s trackable. That is, when someone responds, you know which ad and which media was responsible for generating the response. This is in direct contrast to mass media or “brand” marketing—no one will ever know what ad compelled you to buy that can of Coke; heck you may not even know yourself. It’s measurable. Since you know which ads are being responded to and how many sales you’ve received from each one, you can measure exactly how effective each ad is. You then drop or change ads that are not giving you a return on investment. It uses compelling headlines and sales copy. Direct response marketing has a compelling message of strong interest to your chosen prospects. It uses attention-grabbing headlines with strong sales copy that is “salesmanship in print.” Often the ad looks more like an editorial than an ad (hence making it at least three times more likely to get read). It targets a specific audience or niche. Prospects within specific verticals, geographic zones or niche markets are targeted. The ad aims to appeal to a narrow target market. It makes a specific offer. Usually, the ad makes a specific value-packed offer. Often the aim is not necessarily to sell anything from the ad but to simply get the prospect to take the next action, such as requesting a free report. The offer focuses on the prospect rather than on the advertiser and talks about the prospect’s interests, desires, fears, and frustrations. By contrast, mass media or “brand” marketing has a broad, one-size-fits-all marketing message and is focused on the advertiser. It demands a response. Direct response advertising has a “call to action,” compelling the prospect to do something specific. It also includes a means of response and “capture” of these responses. Interested, high-probability prospects have easy ways to respond, such as a regular phone number, a free recorded message line, a website, a fax back form, a reply card or coupons. When the prospect responds, as much of the person’s contact information as possible is captured so that they can be contacted beyond the initial response. It includes multi-step, short-term follow-up. In exchange for capturing the prospect’s details, valuable education and information on the prospect’s problem is offered. The information should carry with it a second “irresistible offer”—tied to whatever next step you want the prospect to take, such as calling to schedule an appointment or coming into the showroom or store. Then a series of follow-up “touches” via different media such as mail, email, fax and phone are made. Often there is a time or quantity limit on the offer.
Allan Dib (The 1-Page Marketing Plan: Get New Customers, Make More Money, And Stand out From The Crowd)
In God’s Problem, professor Bart Ehrman’s metaphor is exceptionally provocative: What would we think of an earthly father who starved two of his children and fed only the third even though there was enough food to go around? And what would we think of the fed child expressing her deeply felt gratitude to her father for taking care of her needs, when two of her siblings were dying of malnutrition before her very eyes? 2 You can’t unread that passage. So, yes, whenever I’m around people who are praying, whether at dinners or any other ceremony, I don’t bow my head along with them. Today, I look around—defiantly—because I’m not going to give thanks while my siblings are starving before my eyes. Don’t get me wrong: I am thankful—exceedingly thankful—for my food, but not to a God who would design things as such. Indeed, I feel that my contact with reality helps me appreciate my food more than a praying Christian. If the praying Christian truly appreciated how lucky he is to have so much good food, he wouldn’t be offering thanks for it! He’d be baffled like Bart Ehrman, and he would even feel guilty and wonder what he has done to deserve such bounty. If he truly appreciated how most of the world is hungry while he’s praying, he would begin to see the obscenity of his prayer. He might even lose his appetite for a while, if he really understood the problem, deep down.
David Landers (Optimistic Nihilism: A Psychologist's Personal Story & (Biased) Professional Appraisal of Shedding Religion)
As my father likes to say, “Humans are the only animals on the planet that self-domesticate.” The relationship between the boy and his grandmother forms a part of the Dream of the Planet, and the lunch between the grandmother and her grandson is a basic example of how domestication and self-domestication within the Dream occurs. The grandmother domesticated her grandson in that moment, but he continued to self-domesticate himself long after that. Self-domestication is the act of accepting ourselves on the condition that we live up to the ideals we have adopted from others in the Dream of the Planet, without ever considering if those ideals are what we truly want. While the consequences of finishing a bowl of soup are minimal, domestication and self-domestication can take much more serious and darker forms as well. For instance, many of us learned to be critical of our physical appearance because it wasn't “good enough” by society's standards. We were presented with the belief that we weren't tall enough, thin enough, or that our skin wasn't the right color, and the moment we agreed with that belief we began to self-domesticate. Because we adopted an external belief, we either rejected or tried to change our physical appearance so we could feel worthy of our own self-acceptance and the acceptance of others. Imagine for a moment the many industries that would cease to exist if we all loved our bodies exactly the way they are. To be clear, domestication regarding body image is different from wanting to lose weight in order to be healthy, or even having a preference to look a certain way. The key difference is that with a preference, you come from a place of self-love and self-acceptance, whereas with domestication you start from a place of shame, guilt, and not being “enough.” The line between these two can be thin sometimes, and a Master of Self is one who can look within and determine his or her true motive. Another popular form of domestication in the current Dream of the Planet revolves around social class and material possessions. There is an underlying belief promulgated by society that those who have the most “stuff” or who hold certain jobs are somehow more important than the rest. I, for one, have never met anyone who was more important than anyone else, as we are all beautiful and unique creations of the Divine. And yet many people pursue career paths they dislike and buy things they don't really want or need all in an effort to achieve the elusive goals of peer acceptance and self-acceptance. Instances such as these (and we can think of many others) are the ways in which domestication leads to self-domestication, and the result is that we have people living lives that aren't their own.
Miguel Ruiz Jr. (The Mastery of Self: A Toltec Guide to Personal Freedom)
Finally, note that his grandmother is not even present in the current situation, as he has now taken up the reins of domestication and subjugated his own will without anyone's else's influence. In the Toltec tradition we refer to this phenomenon as self-domestication. As my father likes to say, “Humans are the only animals on the planet that self-domesticate.” The relationship between the boy and his grandmother forms a part of the Dream of the Planet, and the lunch between the grandmother and her grandson is a basic example of how domestication and self-domestication within the Dream occurs. The grandmother domesticated her grandson in that moment, but he continued to self-domesticate himself long after that. Self-domestication is the act of accepting ourselves on the condition that we live up to the ideals we have adopted from others in the Dream of the Planet, without ever considering if those ideals are what we truly want. While the consequences of finishing a bowl of soup are minimal, domestication and self-domestication can take much more serious and darker forms as well. For instance, many of us learned to be critical of our physical appearance because it wasn't “good enough” by society's standards. We were presented with the belief that we weren't tall enough, thin enough, or that our skin wasn't the right color, and the moment we agreed with that belief we began to self-domesticate. Because we adopted an external belief, we either rejected or tried to change our physical appearance so we could feel worthy of our own self-acceptance and the acceptance of others. Imagine for a moment the many industries that would cease to exist if we all loved our bodies exactly the way they are. To be clear, domestication regarding body image is different from wanting to lose weight in order to be healthy, or even having a preference to look a certain way. The key difference is that with a preference, you come from a place of self-love and self-acceptance, whereas with domestication you start from a place of shame, guilt, and not being “enough.” The line between these two can be thin sometimes, and a Master of Self is one who can look within and determine his or her true motive. Another popular form of domestication in the current Dream of the Planet revolves around social class and material possessions. There is an underlying belief promulgated by society that those who have the most “stuff” or who hold certain jobs are somehow more important than the rest. I, for one, have never met anyone who was more important than anyone else, as we are all beautiful and unique creations of the Divine. And yet many people pursue career paths they dislike and buy things they don't really want or need all in an effort to achieve the elusive goals of peer acceptance and self-acceptance. Instances such as these (and we can think of many others) are the ways in which domestication leads to self-domestication, and the result is that we have people living lives that aren't their own.
Miguel Ruiz Jr. (The Mastery of Self: A Toltec Guide to Personal Freedom)
Individual experiences of the Kundalini process vary greatly, but the fundamental signs of the rising Kundalini that a person may experience include: • Feeling different, not fitting in • A deep dissatisfaction or a yearning for inner development • Inner sensations of light, sound, current, or heat • A heightened inner or outer awareness; increased sensitivity • Feelings of energy flowing or vibrating within • Special abilities, capacities, and talents • Non-ordinary phenomena; altered states • Spontaneous bodily movements or breathing patterns • Emotional fluctuations; psychological issues coming forward • Atypical sensations or sensitivities • An interest in spiritual growth or in metaphysics or the esoteric • Compassion and a desire to help others • A sense that something non-ordinary, transformative, or holy is happening within • Personal development, and optimally, spiritual transformation and realization CHAPTER 2 BENEFITS OF ASCENSION KUNDALINI And once the latent spirit is awoken, it bolts up the spine, creating other important changes. Maybe the most important of these is the opening of the chakras, the centers of energy that govern our energetic body. All seven must be open so that the Kundalini can rise. There are many people who have devoted their entire life to awakening their Kundalini through meditation practice and spiritual study. Everything takes so much time, really. If you are one who is attuned to the universal energy, the cycle of awakening Kundalini will be easier for you, rather than random. So, what are the rewards of awakening the Kundalini? • Increased intelligence and IQ capacity As you begin your awakening process, your mind becomes clearer, and your mental capacity deepens and enriches in potential. You will be able to multitask and plan more than ever before, and you may even see that your IQ number is actually increasing as your kundalini travels within. It will touch your third eye and crown chakra as shakti energy spins and moves through your chakras, opening these mental capacities as effortlessly as it acts on your heart and healing. • Greater sense of peace, bliss, and tranquility One of kundalini awakening's most commonly experienced benefits includes an increased sense of peace, bliss, tranquility, and confidence in the universe that you are exactly where you should be. Chalk it up to meditation or yoga or even being in nature, but it is also true that when your kundalini awakening begins and becomes sustained, you can find a deep and lasting peace even in moments beyond nature or meditation. You will begin to notice how that equilibrium remains in an inner space that you always and everywhere bring with you.
Adrian Satyam (Energy Healing: 6 in 1: Medicine for Body, Mind and Spirit. An extraordinary guide to Chakra and Quantum Healing, Kundalini and Third Eye Awakening, Reiki and Meditation and Mindfulness.)
Let’s say I have cancer.” He opens his eyes to glare at me. “I don’t like this.” “Just hear me out. I have cancer, and there’s nothing more they can do for me.” He goes still, and for a moment I don’t even feel his heartbeat through his chest, like the thought of my heart stopping stopped his. “I don’t have much time left,” I whisper, letting him feel the possibility of me being gone. “But then someone discovers the cure for cancer.” He tips his mouth to the left and he traces the curves of my knees. “There’s just one catch.” I dip my head to capture his eyes. “The man who discovered the cure—he’s a white supremacist.” He looks back at me unblinkingly for a second before allowing himself one blink—just one. “Do you accept the cure for cancer?” “What good is this when—” “Answer the question. Do you accept the cure for cancer from a white supremacist to save my life?” “I’d accept the cure from the devil himself to save you. You know that.” He sighs. “It’s not the same.” “What’s the title of Dr. Hammond’s book?” He rolls his eyes. “You know the title, Bris.” “Humor me.” “Virus. The title of his book is Virus.” “And the point is that racism is a virus that’s constantly changing, constantly adapting, right?” I ask. “That it adapted when slavery was outlawed and when Jim Crow was eradicated and when segregation was legally struck down. It works its way into our systems, like our penal system, right? It’s a nasty bastard that just keeps morphing and surviving like a cockroach.” Now I have his attention. He’s stopped countering my every word, stopped protesting and thinking this is a useless exercise. He’s finally listening. “The person who finally cures cancer won’t be perfect,” I tell him. “They’ll just be the person who figured out the cure for cancer, and the people who live because of that won’t care that he cheated on his taxes or stepped out on his wife. They’ll care that he cured cancer. Dr. Hammond has a cure, at least for part of the problem. With his ideas and your resources and influence, imagine how much good you can do.” “He doesn’t think we should be together, thinks I’ve been societally conditioned to ‘acquire’ you.” Grip’s flinty look doesn’t dissuade me, even though that is some bullshit. “I bet there are more things you agree on than disagree.” I prop my elbows on his shoulders, leaning into him and persisting. “I bet when he gets to know me, I’ll go from being a ‘they’ to being Bristol. Isn’t that what you said months ago when you performed ‘Bruise’ for the Black and Blue Ball? That sometimes it takes us being around each other and getting to know each other, at least giving us the chance to go from being a category to who we really are? As individuals, who we really are?” He shakes his head, genuine humor apparent for the first time since his steps stuttered through our front door. “So, what?” A grin tilts his mouth. “You remember every word I say?” He really has no idea. “If I only get one life with you,” I mutter into his neck, “then, yes, I’m holding on to every moment and every word you say.” He pulls me away from the crook of his neck, studying my face. His eyes darken, emotion redolent in the air between us. “You’re so precious to me, Bristol,” he says, his voice the perfect blend of raw and reverent.
Kennedy Ryan (Grip Trilogy Box Set (Grip, #0.5-2))
Let’s explore how your Approval Seeker shows up in your life. What things do you do to make sure people like you? What things do you avoid, so others won’t be upset? Take a moment to reflect on this now. The more self-aware you can become, the more power you have to transform yourself and your results. Be sure to think about each of the core areas in your life–your work and career, dating and romantic life, friends and family. 15 Common Signs of Approval Seeking 1. Avoiding No You avoid saying no to others. You fear they will become upset or think you’re a bad person, so you usually say yes, even if it adds more stress to your life. 2. Hesitation You often wait for the “right thing” to say (and thus speak way less than you normally do). 3. Nervous Laughter You’re quick to laugh at whatever another person says, even if it’s not that funny. Your laugh might come too quickly, too often, or at inappropriate times. 4. Difficulty with Endings You have difficulty ending things, from conversations to friendships to romantic relationships. As a result, you may drag things out longer than you really want to. 5. Overly Agreeable You smile, nod, and are very agreeable with others (regardless of your actual opinions on the subject). 6. Avoiding Disagreement You avoid disagreeing with others, challenging others, or stating alternative perspectives. 7. Fear of Judgment You’re afraid of the judgments of others (which can lead to nervousness, hesitation, over-thinking, and social anxiety). 8. Fear of Upset You’re often afraid that others are secretly angry or critical of you, even though they seem to like you when you’re together. This can lead to a constant background unease that you may have “done something wrong” that someone is upset about. 9. Pressure to Entertain You feel pressure to have something great to share, such as a funny or highly engaging story about an adventure you’ve had. 10. Second Guessing & Conversational Replays During an interaction, you experience self-consciousness and doubt about how you are coming across. You imagine you should be someone “better” than you are. Afterwards, you replay the interaction in your mind and find all the things you did wrong, ways you may have upset the other person, and things you should have said. 11. Habitual Apologies You’re quick to apologize out of habit, even for minor transgressions, like starting to speak at the same time as someone else. 12. Submissive Body Language You demonstrate submissive body language, such as looking away frequently or keeping your eyes down. 13. Putting Others First You have a strong habit of putting others’ needs ahead of your own, thinking it is selfish to do otherwise. 14. Not Stating Desires You rarely state what you want directly. Instead, you may suggest or imply something and hope the other person detects it. You often question your desires and think they might be either too much or not worth asking for. 15. Attempting to Fit In & Impress You try to fit in to groups by pretending to be interested in things you are not, or exaggerating about your experiences, wealth, or achievements. All submission to peer pressure is approval seeking.
Aziz Gazipura (Not Nice: Stop People Pleasing, Staying Silent, & Feeling Guilty... And Start Speaking Up, Saying No, Asking Boldly, And Unapologetically Being Yourself)
No, this run, Badwater, my entire desire to push myself to the brink of destruction, was about me. It was about how much I was willing to suffer, how much more I could take, and how much I had to give. If I was gonna make it, this shit would have to get personal.
David Goggins (Can't Hurt Me: Master Your Mind and Defy the Odds)
What if a job interview tested one’s ability to ask questions, as well as answer them? The logical way to achieve that would be to ask interviewees to generate questions. While job interviews often end with the interviewee being asked, Do you have any questions?, that’s treated more as a rote throwaway line, and if anything it invites only closed, practical questions (When would I start? How much travel will there be?) as opposed to thoughtful, creative questions. As an alternative approach, tell every person coming in for an interview to bring a few questions with them. Make it clear those questions should be ambitious and open-ended—Why, What If, and How questions are recommended. These should also be relevant to your company or industry. The questions might inquire about ways the company or its offerings could be expanded or improved; a customer or societal challenge that could be tackled by the company; an untapped opportunity to be explored. The questions this person brings will reveal a lot about him or her. Are the questions audacious and imaginative, or more modest and practical? Do the questions indicate that the candidate did some research before forming them (if so, good sign: it indicates the candidate knows how to do contextual inquiry). To test whether the person can question on the fly, you might ask, during the interview, that the candidate build upon one or more of the prepared questions with additional questions (using the Right Question Institute practice of follow-up questioning to improve and advance existing questions). For example, if she has suggested a What If scenario, ask her to now challenge her own assumptions with Why questions, or get her to take her idea to a more practical level by generating How questions. This will show if a person knows how to “think in questions.” If the candidate has come up with at least one interesting question and then improved on that question during the interview, that person is clearly a gifted questioner and is likely a welcome addition to a company’s culture of inquiry.
Warren Berger (A More Beautiful Question: The Power of Inquiry to Spark Breakthrough Ideas)
Its not that people want to get hurt again. Its that they want to master a situation where they felt helpless. "Repetition compulsion" Maybe this time, the unconscious imagines, I can go back and heal that wound from long ago, by engaging with somebody familiar- but new. The truth is that they reopen the wounds and feel even more inadequate and unlovable." "He may be resistant to acknowledging it now, but I welcome his resistance because resistance is a clue to where the crux of the work lies; it signals what a therapist needs to pay attention to." "Conversion disorder: this is a condition in which a person's anxiety is "converted" into a neurologic conditions such as paralysis, balance issues, incontinence, deafness, tremors, or seizures." "People with conversion disorder aren't faking it- that’s called factitious disorder. People with factitious disorder have a need to be thought of as sick and intentionally go to great lengths to appear ill." "Interestingly, conversion disorder tends to be more prevalent in cultures with strict rules and few opportunities for emotional expression." "Ultracrepidarianism, which means "the habit of giving opinions and advice on matters outside of one's knowledge or competence" "Every decision they make is based on two things: fear and love. Therapy strives to teach you how to tell the two apart." "if you are talking that much, you cant be listening" and its variant, you have two ears and one mouth; there's a reason for that ratio)" "To feel better now, anytime, anywhere, within seconds" Why are we essentially outsourcing the thing that defines uses people? Was it that people couldn’t tolerate being alone or that they couldn’t tolerate being with other people?" "The four ultimate concerns are death, isolation, freedom, and meaningless" "Flooded: meaning one person is in overdrive, and when people feel flooded is best to wait a beat. The person needs a few minutes for his nervous system to reset before he can take anything in." "Developmental stage models: Freud, Jung, Erikson, Piaget and Maslow
Lori Gottlieb
MK, I love you; you are not doing it right, I don't need anyone than you. I have only seen you, you're everywhere in my life. I'm seeing only your face in every face, I only remember that smile, that eyes. No one can take your place, your position from my heart. Save it wherever you wanting to save. I'm in deadly love with you, idiot, duffer. At least meet me, see me, say something to me. You say we have to do sacrifice, OK, whatever you wanting say, tell me everything. Don't cry alone, I'm crying so many times for you my sweetheart. How can I say you it? I'm trying to hate you, forget you but it can't possible. I love you. Why are you shameful? Why are you so shy? Please! Meet me once. Please. At least listen this. Don't misunderstand me. I don't have any bad intention. Please value my request. Meet me once. Once I'll go then never will come back. Meet me once. I want meet my sweetheart. Don't break my heart. I know we will not talk much. I know we both have not that nature. I know when you'll smile, I'll automatically give you. When you'll say hi, I'll automatically say hello. Don't give such punishment for this sweet relation. If you love me then please at least complete my one small wish. Don't you want to see me? Why are you not listening my single small wish? I don't want to see anyone other than you as my everything. MK at least listen to me this time. You've done everything as per you, but please give me at least last chance to say something. Don't be so cruel on you & me too. Please give me your some minutes, some hours. Do you want to seat on my bike back sit? We'll go on drive? I know you have rich car but I love my bike only. I can tell you how to manage the problems if it is possible by me. Please share your problems, we will try to resolve it. But say something. I want to see you. Even you can do everything right. If you genuinely wanting help mi then can you rebuild my image as before in your place? I can be possible. You can say to the people that her account was really hacked & she misunderstood. You are the only person who can reset everything. I'm not saying it because of my sake. It will not trouble you at your place. I have no right on that place but you must be happy. I want to see you. Do something for me, only for one time. I've never asked a single chocolate to anyone in my life. But first time I'm asking you a small thing, to whom I loved badly, deadly & I don't how & why? Please, understand me as a human, I've suffered a lot in this matter, at least give one smile Christian. I'm asking you more than that............................
Only recently has it been discovered that sneezes are a much more drenching experience than anyone thought. A team led by Professor Lydia Bourouiba of MIT, as reported by Nature, studied sneezes more closely than anyone had ever chosen to before and found that sneeze droplets can travel up to eight meters and drift in suspension in the air for ten minutes before gently settling onto nearby surfaces. Through ultra-slow-motion filming, they also discovered that a sneeze isn’t a bolus of droplets, as had always been thought, but more like a sheet—a kind of liquid Saran Wrap—that breaks over nearby surfaces, providing further evidence, if any were needed, that you don’t want to be too close to a sneezing person. An interesting theory is that weather and temperature may influence how the droplets in a sneeze coalesce, which could explain why flu and colds are more common in cold weather, but that still doesn’t explain why infectious droplets are more infectious to us when we pick them up by touch rather than when we breathe (or kiss) them in. The formal name for the act of sneezing, by the way, is sternutation, though some authorities in their lighter moments refer to a sneeze as an autosomal dominant compelling helio-ophthalmic outburst, which makes the acronym ACHOO (sort of). Altogether the lungs weigh about 2.4 pounds, and they take up more space in your chest than you probably realize. They jut up as high as your neck and bottom out at about the breastbone. We tend to think of them as inflating and deflating independently, like bellows, but in fact they are greatly assisted by one of the least appreciated muscles in the body: the diaphragm. The diaphragm is a mammalian invention and it is a good one. By pulling down on the lungs from below, it helps them to work more powerfully.
Bill Bryson (The Body: A Guide for Occupants)
Another method I’ve learned is to just sit there and you close your eyes for at least one hour a day. You surrender to whatever happens—don’t make any effort whatsoever. You make no effort for something, and you make no effort against anything. If there are thoughts running through your mind, you let the thoughts run. For your entire life, things have been happening to you. Some good, some bad, most of which you have processed and dissolved, but a few stuck with you. Over time, more and more stuck with you, and they almost became like these barnacles stuck to you. You lost your childhood sense of wonder and of being present and happy. You lost your inner happiness because you built up this personality of unresolved pain, errors, fears, and desires that glommed onto you like a bunch of barnacles. How do you get those barnacles off you? What happens in meditation is you’re sitting there and not resisting your mind. These things will start bubbling up. It’s like a giant inbox of unanswered emails, going back to your childhood. They will come out one by one, and you will be forced to deal with them. You will be forced to resolve them. Resolving them doesn’t take any work—you just observe them. Now you’re an adult with some distance, time, and space from previous events, and you can just resolve them. You can be much more objective about how you view them. Over time, you will resolve a lot of these deep-seated unresolved things you have in your mind. Once they’re resolved, there will come a day when you sit down to meditate, and you’ll hit a mental “inbox zero.” When you open your mental “email” and there are none, that is a pretty amazing feeling. It’s a state of joy and bliss and peace. Once you have it, you don’t want to give it up. If you can get a free hour of bliss every morning just by sitting and closing your eyes, that is worth its weight in gold. It will change your life. I recommend meditating one hour each morning because anything less is not enough time to really get deep into it. I would recommend if you really want to try meditation, try sixty days of one hour a day, first thing in the morning. After about sixty days, you will be tired of listening to your own mind. You will have resolved a lot of issues, or you have heard them enough to see through those fears and issues. Meditation isn’t hard. All you have to do is sit there and do nothing. Just sit down. Close your eyes and say, “I’m just going to give myself a break for an hour. This is my hour off from life. This is the hour I’m not going to do anything. “If thoughts come, thoughts come. I’m not going to fight them. I’m not going to embrace them. I’m not going to think harder about them. I’m not going to reject them. I’m just going to sit here for an hour with my eyes closed, and I’m going to do nothing.” How hard is that? Why can you not do anything for an hour? What’s so hard about giving yourself an hour-long break? [74]
Eric Jorgenson (The Almanack of Naval Ravikant: A Guide to Wealth and Happiness)
Bronx Car Accident Lawyer Harlan Thompson Law. Accidents can happen at any time of the day. No one can say which person can face accidents. Many people go for insurance, but they don't have much idea regarding it. In this article, we are going to state to you something related to the Bronx Car Accident Lawyer Harlan Thompson Law. Let's follow it. Is it worthy to call an attorney for help after an accident? Engaging an attorney after an accident puts a person in your intersection who understands your state’s laws and the tricks insurance companies may try to take advantage of. In any company, the attorneys will concentrate on your lawsuit by huddling information, discussing with professionals, and reconciling with the security corporation on your behalf so you can concentrate on bringing your life back on the trail. If it is crucial, an attorney might even take your lawsuit to try to get the payment you truly earn. You need to realize the actual law; otherwise, you will be in danger. What is the role of the lawyer? People often get confused about whether to consult a lawyer or not. But according to everyone, it is necessary to contact a lawyer if your car gets in an accident. However, the lawyer will take all the responsibilities. You don't have to worry about different countries have different rules and regulations. According to the laws, one has to follow those. Many people do not have much money to hire a lawyer. If you are facing this, then read the next section. Every company understands that everyone has the right to get a high-quality legal manifestation, no matter their monetary status. The company tries to regulate on a contingency payment purpose, which implies you spend only if and when the company gain a victory in your case. The fee would come in the form of an amount of the settlement or conclusion quantity we attain. How to calculate your claim? When you have gone through an auto accident, deducing the significance of your assertion can be impossible. That’s why we are here to boost. We take care of accurately evaluating all the variables correlated with your accident to formulate the assertion for your security. Calculating the claim is one of the most important features to keep in mind. Some of these crucial characteristics include: ● Medical Expenses. ● Value of Lost Wages. ● Property Repair and Replacement Costs. ● Traumatic Damages. By guaranteeing this evidence is specifically collected, you are more likely to get the mandatory reimbursement to cover all expenditures during this worrisome time. Reach out to the company's office and start discussing your accident claim with them. It is the entire Bronx Car Accident Lawyer Harlan Thompson Law.
Harlan Thompson Law
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Harlan Thompson Law
Erica seemed slightly confused by this line of thought, as it concerned human emotions, but she nodded agreement anyhow. “Exactly.” “It might not work out so easily for you,” Chip warned. “Jessica Shang has a lot going for her. She’s pretty, she’s nice, she’s fun—and she’s rich.” “Yes,” Erica agreed. “But I’m me.” Chip laughed dismissively. “I’m just saying, given the choice between two girls, if one of them’s a billionaire, that’s gonna mean something. This Mike character’s gonna show up to the hotel, find out Daddy Shang rented the whole darn thing, and be gobsmacked. And once Jessica starts batting her eyes at him, he’s gonna think he hit the mother lode.” “Mike’s not that shallow,” I argued. “We’re all that shallow,” Chip retorted. “Whether we want to believe it or not. Mike’s on a weeklong vacation. He’s not looking to fall in love. He’s looking to have fun! And who’s he gonna have more fun with? The girl he can only afford to take to McDonald’s—or the girl who has an entire hotel and a private jet and all the free food they can eat?” “Good point,” I conceded. “I can compete with that,” Erica said confidently. “How?” Jawa asked. “No offense, but you’re not exactly the warmest person in the world. Your own family doesn’t even think you can make friends with Jessica. So what do you know about winning over a boy’s affection?” “I know it’s easy,” Erica replied. “Much easier than making friends with someone. To make friends with another girl is work. You have to be nice and pretend to like the same things and have all these excruciatingly dull conversations about your feelings. To get a guy to fall for you, you barely even need to use your brain.” “That is not true,” Jawa argued, offended. “Really?” Erica came around the table to Jawa, kneeled close to him, batted her eyelashes, and purred, “Would you like to go somewhere quiet and explain why you’re right to me?” Jawa looked as though his brain had shorted out. Face-to-face with Erica, his fourteen-year-old mind was completely overwhelmed by her beauty. “Sure!” he said eagerly. “Let’s go right now!
Stuart Gibbs (Spy Ski School (Spy School Book 4))
Party time Part 1 After school, we go to Maddie’s. When we were little, like freshman year and even some of the sophomore year, we would sometimes stay in her room and put on x-out and pluck out eyebrows into that fine little line, and color our hair with highlights, and order pizza, cramming down as much as we could eat. Those days are going, we can’t get fat. Now Jenny hardly eats anything, and if she does, she can hardly keep it down. I think maybe that’s what I get so lightheaded, I only eat like once a day now. Jenny back then had a little extra around the middle, and now you can see her ribs, she even has that two-defined line on her tummy that goes into her underwear. I remember sneaking around late at night in her hose stealing a cookie from the jar on the top shelf in the old wood cabinet, that is also where her mom would hide her cigarettes that Jenny loved also, and the condoms were in a trinity box on top of the fridge, I sorry but I find that hilarious. At that time, we would stretch out on one of her, old enormous worn-out couches and watch, TV or movies until we fell asleep in our nightshirts’-the TV in Maddie’s living room is like 80 inches it’s like being in a movie theater our legs tangled together under an enormous fleece blanket. Maddie and liv are always entangled more passionately than Jenny and me on the loveseat! Maddie has an ancient TV in her room from the 1990s. It sucks and is small, it’s one of those with the big back on it, and the color is green, like looking into a fish tank. It’s funny her mom and dad don’t have money blinds on the windows, yet they have a big ass TV. You can sometimes see the people in the next condo overlooking us like we can see them get busy in their room! Yet nothing beats the hot guy taking a leak in room 302, he looks to be in his late twenties. He takes the boxes off at 10 pm and we get a free show. He knows we can see him because he makes it look inflexible and you are no more personable. Jenny and we girls love to press upon the glass, and just have fun and be a little crazy, like lifting our nighties and flashing the goods. Facebook stocking gets boring quickly anymore, so some nights the webcam comes out too. After her mom and dad are asleep… I like it’s more fun to be bad! Like we all have profiles and fake names because none of us are eighteen yet. Any- how’s mine is ‘Angel Pink Wings 01’ Maddie goes by: ‘Mad kitty 69’ Jenny goes by: ‘Ms. Little Lover 14’ Liv goes by: ‘Olivia O 123’ Yet everyone knows her by Liv so that name is okay- I guess. We make good money- ‘Double Clicking the Mouse.’ You would not believe all the pervs on this cam. the site, just wanting to see us doing it. Like old guys like our PE teacher! Man- that I didn’t even think about how to turn on a computer. Just like him, I guess they need too to see more of us close up. We have our checks mailed to Jenny's college boyfriend’s PO Box. Me this is what I do and yes- I come for you all, I just put in fake blue hair dye in, and have fake long lashes, and put in my blue contacts, and you don’t even know me. And then pen in more eyebrows. Fake, fake, fake, fake FAKE! Boys don’t like it when you fake it or do, they look at me, that's why I am Bi.
Marcel Ray Duriez (Young Taboo (Nevaeh))
Party time Part 1 After school, we go to Maddie’s. When we were little, like freshman year and even some of the sophomore year, we would sometimes stay in her room and put on x-out and pluck out eyebrows into that fine little line, and color our hair with highlights, and order pizza, cramming down as much as we could eat. Those days are going, we can’t get fat. Now Jenny hardly eats anything, and if she does, she can hardly keep it down. I think maybe that’s what I get so lightheaded, I only eat like once a day now. Jenny back then had a little extra around the middle, and now you can see her ribs, she even has that two-defined line on her tummy that goes into her underwear. I remember sneaking around late at night in her hose stealing a cookie from the jar on the top shelf in the old wood cabinet, that is also where her mom would hide her cigarettes that Jenny loved also, and the condoms were in a trinity box on top of the fridge, I sorry but I find that hilarious. At that time, we would stretch out on one of her, old enormous worn-out couches and watch, TV or movies until we fell asleep in our nightshirts’-the TV in Maddie’s living room is like 80 inches it’s like being in a movie theater our legs tangled together under an enormous fleece blanket. Maddie and liv are always entangled more passionately than Jenny and me on the loveseat! Maddie has an ancient TV in her room from the 1990s. It sucks and is small, it’s one of those with the big back on it, and the color is green, like looking into a fish tank. It’s funny her mom and dad don’t have money blinds on the windows, yet they have a big ass TV. You can sometimes see the people in the next condo overlooking us like we can see them get busy in their room! Yet nothing beats the hot guy taking a leak in room 302, he looks to be in his late twenties. He takes the boxes off at 10 pm and we get a free show. He knows we can see him because he makes it look inflexible and you are no more personable. Jenny and we girls love to press upon the glass, and just have fun and be a little crazy, like lifting our nighties and flashing the goods. Facebook stocking gets boring quickly anymore, so some nights the webcam comes out too. After her mom and dad are asleep… I like it’s more fun to be bad! Like we all have profiles and fake names because none of us are eighteen yet. Any- how’s mine is ‘Angel Pink Wings 01’ Maddie goes by: ‘Mad kitty 69’ Jenny goes by: ‘Ms. Little Lover 14’ Liv goes by: ‘Olivia O 123’ Yet everyone knows her by Liv so that name is okay- I guess. We make good money- ‘Double Clicking the Mouse.’ You would not believe all the pervs on this cam the site, just wanting to see us doing it. Like old guys like our PE teacher! Man- that I didn’t even think about how to turn on a computer. Just like him, I guess they need too to see more of us close up. We have our checks mailed to Jenny's college boyfriend’s PO Box. Me this is what I do and yes- I come for you all, I just put in fake blue hair dye in, and have fake long lashes, and put in my blue contacts, and you don’t even know me. And then pen in more eyebrows. Fake, fake, fake, fake FAKE! Boys don’t like it when you fake it or do, they look at me, that's why I am Bi.
Marcel Ray Duriez (Young Taboo (Nevaeh))
Here’s how to get a million bells easily: Forget about paying off the loan on your house for now. Put all your money into the bank. It can be a lot or just a few thousand bells. (Personally, we started this process with 45,000 Bells). Save and exit your game by pressing the (-) symbol and closing the software. Change your system clock to the year 2000. Month and date doesn’t matter but we liked keeping it the same to avoid extra variables. Start the game so that Tom Nook thinks it’s the year 2000. Read all your mail. (You may already have a letter from the bank saying there’s interest from doing this time jump BUT interest is never deposited into your bank for going back in time so don’t celebrate yet). Save and exit your game by pressing the (-) symbol and closing the software. Change your system clock to the year 2060. Start the game so that Tom Nook thinks you’re in 2060. Read all your mail. Note: Sometimes you will get 2 letters, each for 99,999 bells but you’ll notice only 99,9999 bells will actually be deposited into your account. The max amount of interest you can earn is 99,999 Check your bank! We recommend checking your bank account each time you do this to make sure you’re doing it correctly! Depending on how much money you have in the bank, it may take a while to get the max interest and a while to find the minimum amount of years you need to jump in order to get the max interest. So experiment a bit with how much you’re changing your clock because jumping ahead repeatedly is easier than jumping back, then ahead, then back ahead. Once we had 900,000 Bells in our savings we only had to jump 2 years ahead to get that 99,999 bells interest. REMEMBER you only gain interest when you’re moving forward in time. Repeat this time jumping process until you get 1,000,00 Bells! Go for more if you’d like. You can likely do this later in the game too but you’ll risk weeds growing and Residents leaving. They may not leave immediately but could start leaving suddenly once you get back into your daily routine. Playing
Kizikay Dunham (Animal Crossing New Horizons: The Best Full Guide: Tips and Tricks Guide to Master Animal Crossing Horizon)
Today, such studies are illegal. Medical scientists cannot offer inducements like pardons to persuade prisoners to take part in their studies. Although they can award small cash payments to research subjects, they are forbidden from giving anyone so much money or such tempting favors that their compensations might constitute what ethicists term an inappropriate inducement, an irresistible temptation to join the study. Now, more than eighty years after the 1918 flu, people enter studies for several reasons—to get free medical care, to get an experimental drug that, they hope, might cure them of a disease like cancer or AIDS, or to help further scientific knowledge. In theory at least, study participants are supposed to be true volunteers, taking part in research of their own free will. But in 1918, such ethical arguments were rarely considered. Instead, the justification for a risky study with human beings was that it was better to subject a few to a great danger in order to save the many. Prisoners were thought to be the ideal study subjects. They could offer up their bodies for science and, if they survived, their pardons could be justified because they gave something back to society. The Navy inmates were perfect for another reason. Thirty-nine of them had never had influenza, as far as anyone knew. So they might be uniquely susceptible to the disease. If the doctors wanted to deliberately transmit the 1918 flu, what better subjects? Was influenza really so easily transmitted? the doctors asked. Why did some people get it and others not? Why did it kill the young and healthy? Could the wartime disruptions and movements of troops explain the spread of the flu? If it was as contagious as it seemed, how was it being spread? What kind of microorganism was causing the illness? The normal way to try to answer such questions would be to study the spread of the disease in animals. Give the disease to a few cages of laboratory rats, or perhaps to some white rabbits. Isolate whatever was causing the illness. Show how it spread and test ways to protect animals—and people—against the disease. But influenza, it seemed, was a uniquely human disease. No animal was known to be susceptible to it. Medical researchers felt they had no choice but to study influenza in people. Either the Navy doctors were uncommonly persuasive or the enticement of a pardon was overwhelmingly compelling. For whatever reason, the sixty-two men agreed to be subjects in the medical experiment. And so the study began. First the sailors were transferred to a quarantine station on Gallops Island in Boston Harbor. Then the Navy doctors did their best to give the men the flu. Influenza is a respiratory disease—it is spread from person to person, presumably carried on droplets of mucus sprayed in the air when sick people cough or sneeze, or carried on their hands and spread when the sick touch the healthy. Whatever was causing the flu should be present in mucus taken from the ill. The experiments, then, were straightforward. The Navy doctors collected mucus from men who were desperately ill with the flu, gathering thick viscous secretions from their noses and throats. They sprayed mucus from flu patients into the noses and throats of some men, and dropped it into other men’s eyes. In one attempt, they swabbed mucus from the back of the nose of a man with the flu and then directly swabbed that mucus into the back of a volunteer’s nose.
Gina Kolata (Flu: The Story Of the Great Influenza Pandemic of 1918 and the Search for the Virus That Caused It)
1.5 Make time to manage People used to worry about keeping their desk tidy. Now it’s also about keeping the computer desktop tidy. Then there are the interruptions, the telephone, the meetings…Follow these nine tips to get rid of the time robbers in your life. 1 Be clear about what you want to achieve. Do the one minute wonder exercise opposite. 2 Plan your work. Write down your goals and break each goal down into sub-tasks. Give start and finish dates to each task. 3 Book appointments with your work. If a report is going to take two hours, then make an appointment with that report as if it were a real person. 4 Deal with tasks as soon as you can. If it’s an unpleasant task then do it first thing. 5 Be ruthless with time – but courteous with people. But don’t over-socialize either face to face or on the phone. Remember you’re eating into other people’s time as well! one minute wonder Write down your job purpose. Then write the five activities that help you achieve this job purpose. Rate each activity 1-5 according to how happy you are with the time you spend on each (1=low, 5=high). Now get those low – rated activities into your diary! 6 Deal with your email three times a day. First thing in the morning, mid-morning and mid-afternoon. Turn off the pop-up that tells you when an email has just come through. 7 Deal with interruptions. Ask the interrupter if it’s quick or if it can wait until later. If interrupted at your desk, then stand up to keep the other person focused. 8 Deal with your in-tray once a day. Take each item and: deal with it; delegate it; file it or dump it. 9 Plan your telephone calls. Save them up and do them in a block so they’ll be quicker and more focused. The worst feeling as a manager is when we think that the workload is too much for us. These nine tips make sure that you stay in control and go home each evening feeling on top of your workload. Being a great time manager leaves you with more time for your people.
Michael Heath (Management (Collins Business Secrets))
The Devil offered Christ the ability to turn stones into bread. Then he offered him the chance to test God, or His angels actually, by throwing himself off a cliff. Which I have always thought was probably not a very tempting temptation. To see if the angels would rescue him, right? Christ says no, like any sane person would if you asked him if he would like to jump off a cliff. “Finally, the Devil offered to make Christ the Ruler of the World. Much more tempting than jumping off a cliff, definitely. “But Christ rejects that too. “He rejects everything for what he cannot know. The Great Unknown. He chooses to take”– she shrugged her shoulders to underline how little it seemed– “whatever. Anything. He is saying that what is unknown is better than anything that is known. That the freedom to go through life without even ever knowing what is going to happen to you is the best possible thing that can happen, better than any miraculous gift could ever be.
Chris F. Westbury (The Bride Stripped Bare By Her Bachelors, Even)
Get Much more Out of one's iPhone With Jailbreak apple iphone 3G Typically individuals prefer to department out and do things that their working system has not been designed to do. Whether or not the person want to set up a new working system that enables them to how to jailbreak iphone play nintendo video games or turn their cellphone into a remote security system, jail breaking an Iphone has many advantages that users can benefit from. When a person decides to jail break an iphone, one of many first issues that they may need to take into account is violating the warranty tips, since this will trigger the guarantee to be voided. Jailbreaking refers back to the hacking from the apple iphone, which permits users to setup third social gathering apps inside the gadget. All iphones are sure to a specific supplier when they are made. This varies with nation and location.The underside line could be that the patrons are restricted to this provider, also termed as confined right into a "jail". With the utilization of softwares like jailbreak iPhone 3G, one can cut up up this restriction, subsequently the phrase "jailbreaking". This was thought of as a criminality till modern conditions, but which has a contemporary courtroom ruling, It is removed from any longer a violation with the laws. You may as well jailbreak iphone by installing extensions which offers immediate reach to your system settings out of your iOS machine. In addition they ignore specific restrictions set by Apple and carriers and acquires packages that give you with more management concerning iOS expertise. Jailbraking frees iOS devices from Apple’s limitations and lets you install something you want. There are various purposes that doesn’t meet Apple requirements and carriers out activties that Apple wouldn’t allow your gadget to do for a number of reasons. After jailbreaing your iPhone, house owners can attain nearly limitless customization enabling better management of the phone’s settings like the color scheme and interface. This offers a resolution for iPhone restrictions permitting the iPhone to have the same customization like the Google’s working system (Android). Jailbreaking entails overcoming numerous sorts of iOS security elements simultaneously.
Rand Millen
damages incurred from the usage of this publication.   * * * Table of Contents   1.   How to Use this Book 2.   Free Conversation Skills Training 3a. Part 1 - What is in the Way of Developing Great Conversation Skills? 3b. The 10 Negative Habits that Limit Conversation Skills 3c. The Love and Connection Daily Practice 4a. Part 2 - Conversation Skills Tips and Strategies 4b. How to Approach Someone to Start a Conversation 5.   9 Great Ways to Confidently Approach Anyone 6.   How to Stop Feeling Nervous When Meeting New People 7.   What to Say When Introducing Yourself to New People 8.   6 Easy Ways to Avoid Getting Stuck for Words 9.   10 Interesting Topics of Conversation for Every Occasion 10.  The Best Questions to Keep a Conversation Going 11.  How to Shine in Conversation with Listening Skills 12.  How to Use Body Language to Read People Like a Book 13.  Show People You Like Them and Make Friends with Ease 14.  Closing Thoughts * * * How to Use this Book     This book is a how to guide to making conversation with new people. I present ideas, strategies and approaches that can help you only if you apply the techniques.   Make sure to use these principles and ideas out there in the real world. It may take a little trial and error but if you practice you’ll see its much easier than most people think to start a conversation with someone you are meeting for the first time. You’ll have much more fun talking to people and you’ll enjoy letting your personality shine.   Do bear in mind, the strategies presented here are a starting point, you’ll need to adjust your application of the individual tips to the context and people you are dealing with. Some flexibility on your part is essential.   Take it a step at a time, aim to improve just a little each day, use these strategies often and make a commitment to ongoing learning with the free resources mentioned in the next section. Before long you’ll be one of those people others respect and admire. They’ll be wondering how you make
Peter W. Murphy (Always Know What To Say - Easy Ways To Approach And Talk To Anyone)
The Right Intake Protein, protein, protein. Is there any other food group that causes so much angst? Have too little and you may be in trouble, have too much and you may be in greater trouble. Proteins are the main building blocks of the body making muscles, organs, skin and also enzymes. Thus, a lack of protein in your diet affects not only your health (think muscle deficiency and immune deficiency) but also your looks (poor skin and hair). On the other hand, excess protein can be harmful. “High protein intake can lead to dehydration and also increase the risk of gout, kidney afflictions, osteoporosis as well as some forms of cancer,” says Taranjeet Kaur, metabolic balance coach and senior nutritionist at AktivOrtho. However, there are others who disagree with her. "In normal people a high-protein natural diet is not harmful. In people who are taking artificial protien supplements , the level of harm depends upon the kind of protein and other elements in the supplement (for example, caffiene, etc.) For people with a pre- existing, intestinal, kidney or liver disease, a high-protein diet can be harmful," says leading nutritionist Shikha Sharma, managing director of Nutri-Health.  However, since too much of anything can never be good, the trick is to have just the right amount of protein in your diet.  But how much is the right amount? As a ballpark figure, the US Institute of Medicine recommends 0.8 gm of protein per kilogram of body weight. This amounts to 56 gm per day for a 70 kg man and 48 gm per day for a 60 kg woman.  However, the ‘right’ amount of protein for you will depend upon many factors including your activity levels, age, muscle mass, physical goals and the current state of health. A teenager, for example, needs more protein than a middle-aged sedentary man. Similarly, if you work out five times a day for an hour or so, your protein requirement will go up to 1.2-1.5 gm per kg of body weight. So if you are a 70kg man who works out actively, you will need nearly 105 gm of protein daily.   Proteins are crucial, even when you are trying to lose weight. As you know, in order to lose weight you need to consume fewer calories than what you burn. Proteins do that in two ways. First, they curb your hunger and make you feel full. In fact, proteins have a greater and prolonged satiating effect as compared to carbohydrates and fats. “If you have proteins in each of your meals, you have lesser cravings for snacks and other such food items,” says Kaur. By dulling your hunger, proteins can help prevent obesity, diabetes and heart disease.   Second, eating proteins boosts your metabolism by up to 80-100 calories per day, helping you lose weight. In a study conducted in the US, women who increased protein intake to 30 per cent of calories, ended up eating 441 fewer calories per day, leading to weight loss. Kaur recommends having one type of protein per meal and three different types of proteins each day to comply with the varied amino acid requirements of the body. She suggests that proteins should be well distributed at each meal instead of concentrating on a high protein diet only at dinner or lunch. “Moreover, having one protein at a time helps the body absorb it better and it helps us decide which protein suits our system and how much of it is required by us individually. For example, milk may not be good for everyone; it may help one person but can produce digestive problems in the other,” explains Kaur. So what all should you eat to get your daily dose of protein? Generally speaking, animal protein provides all the essential amino acids in the right ratio for us to make full use of them. For instance, 100 gm of chicken has 30 gm of protein while 75gm of cottage cheese (paneer) has only 8 gm of proteins (see chart). But that doesn’t mean you need to convert to a non-vegetarian in order to eat more proteins, clarifies Sharma. There are plenty of vegetarian options such as soya, tofu, sprouts, pulses, cu
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Cars For Sale New Bern NC
1. You might be the type of person who is always on the go, running from one thing to the next— maybe even pushing things off that bring rest and healing in order to keep up. What are the things in your life right now that consume so much of your time? Do you feel guilty when you take time for yourself? 2. Today’s reading says that you can “accomplish more in less time, after you have given yourself to [God] in rich communion.” How do you think that taking time to “align yourself with [His] perspective” in time spent with God might make you more productive? Is there ever a time when you are so busy doing God’s work that you miss the opportunity to spend time working with God in quiet prayer and reflection? 3. God promises in Psalm 32:8 that He “will instruct you and teach you in the way which you should go; I will counsel you with My eye upon you” (NASB). Take a moment today to slow down and spend a few minutes in prayer. See if this makes your day more productive or possibly even changes the priorities filling your life up with busyness.
Sarah Young (Jesus Calling Book Club Discussion Guide for Women (Jesus Calling®))
capital expenditures required in Clean Technology are so incredibly high,” says Pritzker, “that I didn’t feel that I could do anything to make an impact, so I became interested in digital media, and established General Assembly in January 2010, along with Jake Schwartz, Brad Hargreaves and Matthew Brimer.” In less than two years GA had to double its space. In June 2012, they opened a second office in a nearby building. Since then, GA’s courses been attended by 15,000 students, the school has 70 full-time employees in New York, and it has begun to export its formula abroad—first to London and Berlin—with the ambitious goal of creating a global network of campuses “for technology, business and design.” In each location, Pritzker and his associates seek cooperation from the municipal administration, “because the projects need to be understood and supported also by the local authorities in a public-private partnership.” In fact, the New York launch was awarded a $200,000 grant from Mayor Bloomberg. “The humanistic education that we get in our universities teaches people to think critically and creatively, but it does not provide the skills to thrive in the work force in the 21st century,” continues Pritzker. “It’s also true that the college experience is valuable. The majority of your learning does not happen in the classroom. It happens in your dorm room or at dinner with friends. Even geniuses such as Mark Zuckerberg or Bill Gates, who both left Harvard to start their companies, came up with their ideas and met their co-founders in college.” Just as a college campus, GA has classrooms, whiteboard walls, a library, open spaces for casual meetings and discussions, bicycle parking, and lockers for personal belongings. But the emphasis is on “learning by doing” and gaining knowledge from those who are already working. Lectures can run the gamut from a single evening to a 16-week course, on subjects covering every conceivable matter relevant to technology startups— from how to create a web site to how to draw a logo, from seeking funding to hiring employees. But adjacent to the lecture halls, there is an area that hosts about 30 active startups in their infancy. “This is the core of our community,” says Pritzker, showing the open space that houses the startups. “Statistically, not all of these companies are going to do well. I do believe, though, that all these people will. The cost of building technology is dropping so low that people can actually afford to take the risk to learn by doing something that, in our minds, is a much more effective way to learn than anything else. It’s entrepreneurs who are in the field, learning by doing, putting journey before destination.” “Studying and working side by side is important, because from the interaction among people and the exchange of ideas, even informal, you learn, and other ideas are born,” Pritzker emphasizes: “The Internet has not rendered in-person meetings obsolete and useless. We chose these offices just to be easily accessible by all—close to Union Square where almost every subway line stops—in particular those coming from Brooklyn, where many of our students live.
Maria Teresa Cometto (Tech and the City: The Making of New York's Startup Community)