Criticise at your peril

Don't ever run out in the road again!

Don’t ever run out in the road again!

This little post is a reblog in a way of someone else’s words. Or perhaps it’s just a very long quote from a Master!

Yesterday I watched a Barbara Sher video on YouTube where she says to be very careful of giving criticism. “One piece of criticism is not overcome by 20 forms of praise. First of all you might not know what you are talking about and secondly even if later down the track it turns out that you are right, they won’t remember what you said. They will remember the hurt.” Wise words indeed from one of my favourite people (more on her later, but I am spending over two months pay soon to go and meet her!!).

The bit that spoke loudest is that ‘maybe you won’t know what you are talking about’. There have certainly been times that I have gotten the wrong end of the stick and have maybe put in my two cents worth to an organisation and then been politely responded to in way which showed I had it all wrong. Ouch! but no biggie – I can do failure and sorry really well. A heartfelt apology and we are all on our way. I don’t hang on to my failures too long – too scatty to remember them, luckily. And of course sometimes ‘you have to learn to accept the apology you never got’. I like that one too. Got a few of those under my belt, sadly.

What about the times when you don’t criticise or give feedback, don’t speak up for yourself? Is it because you know you are speaking to someone unable to hear you or because you fear the venom that will pour out of you once you let loose? Nobody wants venom inside. That leads to cancer, right? So should you speak?

And again, if that venom is somehow misdirected, you will only end up feeling bad, especially if you hurt the other person and have any kind of compassion in you. Time to consider what you say before you open up. In some cases I choose not to ‘stand up for’ myself, no matter how much I am invited to. And in others I speak where clearly it is not wanted. But that is tomorrow’s post….

How to know the difference?

This quote I just found on Pinterest sure helps!

He has the right to criticize, who has a heart to help.

 

Advertisements

The Quandary and the Shoe

quandary

Don’t type

Bad things happen to good people all the time, right? There is no rhyme nor reason and the best thing the ‘good’ person can do is not react, not take it on board with self blame and with any luck learn to let it go and become stronger in the process. Bad things don’t happen to you all the time, and the person doing the bad thing has to live with those kinds of outcomes day after day until they stop doing it and the lesson is learned. Karma.

However this ignores one tiny problem. Continue reading

Open mouth long enough to change feet

Keeping your mouth shut

Keeping your mouth shut. Quite often for some of us we only open our mouths long enough to change feet. Of course our mouth only opens when our brain tells it to.  And the brain has different states. Present, calm and focused, on autopilot or ‘off with the fairies’. Then you have to factor in mood, sensitivity and excitability and you never know what your mouth will come out with when it opens.

In the last week I came across a hideous situation where Continue reading

How to attract the creative

It is better by far to speak with a person than to a person – J.D. Boatwood

Speak with you darling

Ouch! I am guilty of this one. Sometimes I go into warp speed, all excited about my latest subject and off I go, like a cork out of post Grand Prix champagne. There is no ‘with’ about it. The unwitting listener goes through Continue reading

What an extraordinary woman!

Anais Nin

I have finally put two and two together this morning. I searched Pinterest for Anais Nin as I know that I love her quotes. What an extraordinary woman! What I realised, when images of Henry and June (the movie) came up for her name, is that I had seen her character in a movie also and that she is a beautiful, erotic soul as well as a great thinker. When I saw the movie, rented from Blockbuster, it was one of those awkward moments when you get some friends and your parents over and the movie turns out to be soft porn. The room falls silent throughout. My mother afterwards commented that it perhaps wasn’t appropriate and one guest whispered as he left that he kept a cushion on his lap the whole time! Great memories. I have since bought the movie so I might have to watch it again, now that I know how much I love Anais’ mind 🙂

 

Erotica Anais Nin

Anyway, I digress. I also don’t remember coming across this quote before, but perhaps the time is right so it speaks to me now. I can certainly look back on all the ‘states’ I have become during my life – embarassed kid, anxious student, uptight parent, depressed housewife, and see that they were necessary but not something I want to hang onto. Hopefully we distil the best of what we became, learn from the worst of what we became and slowly come to a kind of peace as we mature, with acceptance and knowledge of how best to enjoy what life brings. Is there any state I have tried to remain in? Absolutely! I treasure my days and moment where happiness bubbles to the surface. They don’t hang around so I couldn’t elect to stay that way. I can only be aware, recognise and appreciate them when they appear.

May you also recognise and enjoy the good times while they are happening. Maybe now is one of them 🙂

Rosamund Pike

Waves

Waves

Where did everybody go? Where did I go? There seems to be a huge lull in the number of blog posts from my favourite bloggers which I receive and read these days. Instead my incoming emails are outnumbered by special offers for teeth whitening and holidays, meals and gadgets. Of course I long since stopped receiving ‘letters’ from friends by email, probably because I don’t write any either.

Anyway I digress. I do know where I am though. I am on a wave. I am always on a wave. My current wave has me doing useful jobs around the house, accomplishing and achieving. Very satisfying. My last wave had me writing blogs almost every day and thinking more deeply. Very satisfying. My current wave has me buying myself treats like cappuccino ice-cream, Chai Latte and chocolate; perhaps feeding up as the cold weather sets in, here in Sydney. Very satisfying. My last wave had me ‘Blogging Myself Thin’ until I lost the 7 Kg of excess weight, gained from the last wave of little treats. Very satisfying. Anyway you get the picture. Life can be immensely satisfying in the little day to day stuff as long as you forget the mirror image – for example I could describe these lovely waves quite differently. I could say I have ‘writers’ block’, I am putting on weight, I am not socialising enough. Pah!! That is not how I see it. I hurry past such thoughts if they drift in.

Enjoy, enjoy, enjoy people! The wave is bigger than you, lifting you up and sweeping you along, always keeping your head above the water and moving forward. When it reaches shore and lets you go, you will be drawn back and lifted onto another wave. That’s just how it works.  The turmoil and froth at the end which caused you to exit this wave is just a necessary part of starting over, waking you up, ready to ride the next wave. I look forward to your return to blogging, should you find yourself ready again and am happy for you that your current wave is so enjoyable that you don’t feel the need to share, or pour out your soul, but just to live life. I will be waiting….

Learn to surf

Yin and Yang


Power tools

I haven’t blogged for a while as my energy seems to have gone into doing up my home. I have heard of the concept of masculine and feminine energy and I wonder which is the more masculine – writing blogs or using power tools! I tend to reject the outside world, including my boyfriend, when I have this huge energy for getting things done so my renovating is a masculine pursuit for me. But what is writing? If feminine energy is being sensual, loving, yearning and preparing for someone else then I would assume that writing is a masculine pursuit.

What constitutes feminine energy? Some people are quiet and softly spoken, good listeners, gentle souls. That’s easy to spot. I look the part, wearing mostly dresses, my long carefully curled hair, make up and love of pink and anything girly but I have a lot of energy (and calloused hands) which surprises people. Sometimes I just want to get things done, so everyone else can bugger off and did I mention that I swear (a lot on a bad day)? I get impatient with pfaffing around, wonder why people don’t just get on with things sometimes and probably come across as aggressive at times.

I actually had a quote about gluttony to write about today but I am so off track I give up on that one for now 🙂 The ultimate digress!

Anyway back to today’s digress. My probably very sexist comments here are just ramblings – exploring out loud, which is why I took to blogging in the first place – a journey not to teach but to discover.

And of what use is today’s outburst to you, the reader if you have gotten this far? I think this has been a reminder to me to become more balanced. I must remember to use all sides of my persona and not head down a masculine path like a woman possessed. Living alone with my kids and not seeing my partner very often (he is another independent creative) has allowed me to indulge my selfish side, which often involves getting things done. But once I am on this ‘kick’ I find it hard to stop. It was Mother’s Day yesterday and I spent the whole day physically working on the home and garden. But I had the best day! And what does it take to commute this energy back to blogging? I committed to myself to at least try today and it’s been hard. This post has been rewritten so many times. I am all over the shop. No beginning, middle or end; no satisfactory conclusion (yet?)

OK here’s the moral of my story. May you remember today to stop and become aware of where you are at – achieving at the expense of human relations, or indulging in love and friendship while the things you should be doing remain neglected and are slowly building up into crisis mode. May your energies be balanced and harmony be restored.

Playful

 

I Had It All Backwards (as usual)

The finger

Just when you think you are on your way, you are almost smug, you think you have a handle on this thing called life and wayward emotions, something happens, the penny drops and you realise you are barely there after all.

“The fool doth think he is wise, but the wise man knows himself to be a fool.”
-William Shakespeare

I go for a run each morning and the first 800 metres is along a narrow street where you basically have to park to let another car through. It means I have to park myself and break my ‘stride’ in order to let each car pass. I have this silly thing where I watch intently to see if they will thank me for anticipating their passing, and taking myself off the road (there are no footpaths as it’s on a steep hill). Anything would do, a wave, a nod, a smile. Just any recognition that I had given them a little gift and not made them slow down on their way to work.

When I would detect no trace, I would walk back onto the road and give them the finger behind my back at waist level. Hah! That showed them!! As if they would even see it in such an odd place or know what it was!

Then I realised I had it all backwards, yet again. My joy is in doing a good deed, even if no one notices; in my own opinion of myself. And their joy would be in thanking me, if they did so. The ones that don’t acknowledge it are either in their own little world, perhaps late for work (more reason to get off the road), don’t realise that I got out of their way on purpose or are just not appreciative people. So their little joy is lost to them.

Now I can look into the faces of those in the cars I have stopped for and give them the warmest smiles, come what may. My run just got easier!

 

Are you a Sparkler or a Log?

Sparkler

I am sure you know what I’m talking about. We’re alive so we have a fire in us that is burning until such time as it goes out. We have energy, in fact we are energy of course. How you use that energy as you live is up to you.

I like to think I’m a sparkler. Enthusiastic, impulsive; I just LOVE life! … Until I don’t and I’m all flat again for a short while. Some people are logs. It might take them a while to ignite but once they do, they just keep on humming along, warm and cosy, glowing and reliable until the end.

So how do you cope if you are a sparkler? Life can be full on amazing; explosive even. When you’ve burned out, as you surely must at some point until the next time, what do you have left?

Bombe Alaska

Now if you were one of these desserts, your loved ones wouldn’t be left looking at a burned out sparkler each time your latest interest extinguishes itself. They would be left with what they know and love, someone inviting, comforting, sweet, wonderful; however else you would like to describe this confection.

So it’s OK to be you. I’ts OK to be up and down, be labelled bipolar perhaps, get enthusiastic but not follow through to something more meaningful or money making. The joy was in the sparkle and the sparkle is always to be appreciated, no matter how short. You know what is left inside you to hold the sparkle. Hold it firmly in your hands and never let it go. The intensity is just one tiny aspect of your personality that people will either be drawn to or avoid. Let them go. We can’t hang on to everyone we come across in life and each interaction is meaningful, no matter how short.

Glowing log

And if you are a log? I applaud you and I envy you in some ways. Your interests will develop as you stick with them and be applauded and recognised. You are glowing, reliable, quietly burning and making the world a warmer place for everyone with your consistency.

There’s room for us all people. And thank goodness for that.

 

Kamikaze Butterfly

kamikaze butterfly

I saw a large, orange seemingly Kamikaze butterfly at the weekend. He was going for it! I looked around for his mate as butterflies often seem to appear in twos but there was none. So he was zooming and swooping extremely low, and having a high old time between a tree overhanging the water and the water itself. I was almost concerned at first but then I noticed the energy, the thrills and the joy! Finally he rested on the tree and basked in the sun, relaxing and taking it all in.

Sun butterfly

And why not? What a life this divine creature has led. He lived half his life as a caterpillar at risk of being eaten by almost anything. He then lived in a cocoon, probably wondering if this was it; the darkness, all there was. Next he had to work really hard push his way out of a tiny hole in the cocoon so that the blood would be forced into his wings, not knowing why he had lived such suffering and it seemed to be getting worse.

But finally he comes out, back into the light and he’s changed – a whole new person. Where once he was heavy, sliding along, dragging himself along the ground and balancing on twigs, now he is weightless and free. He has wings for goodness sake!  And he’s not afraid to use them. The worst is behind him but time is limited; a couple of weeks maybe, so he takes off, in every sense of the word.

If I was a butterfly with or without a mate, I would be living it up too, taking risks, doing exactly what I felt like, going crazy one minute and slowing down the next. He was testing his wings in every sense of the word, oblivious to fear. Will he live long enough for such a beautiful creature? Yes he certainly will. He’s not wasting a moment.

Perhaps we are all butterflies. We start out vulnerable, dark times confuse us, we do what we have to in order to get back to the light and find ourselves stronger and free again. Now you’re here, are you making the most of it? Can you see the butterfly in you? Just look a little closer…

The butterfly in you