Forgiveness Takes Time

Forgiveness takes time. Sometimes it is a daily struggle and a conscious effort to do both. The mind doesn’t always work the way we want it to; especially when it comes to forgetting what someone has done to wrong us.

When we make the decision to forgive someone, we sometimes forget that our hearts and minds will always remember pain, regardless if we are still upset about it or not. Have you ever forgiven someone, and then time goes by and something reminds you of what they did to you in past? Do those hurt feelings fill your heart again? It is totally normal and natural if this ever happens to you because pain is imprinted on our hearts and souls forever. Like a tattoo that has been removed, there will always be a scar left in its place. This doesn’t mean that you should be angry all over again, it simply means you must remind yourself that you have forgiven, why you have forgiven and stop thinking about the past.

Forgiveness of ourselves and also of other people can sometimes be a daily struggle. “It is a gift to yourself to forgive”- I was once told. It never made sense to me until I was older and realized that the only person I was hurting by holding a grudge and replaying the same sad story in my head over and over again, was myself. I will not give anyone the power to repeatedly make me feel bad, so I forgive. I hold in my anger and hurt a lot because I am human and forget these simple words told to me as a little girl. When rationalization comes back to me, I release the hold the person’s pain has caused me and forgive. They may not even know that they have been forgiven, but I say it, feel and think it to make it stick. Sometimes daily…

How you treat others is a direct reflection of how you feel about yourself.

How you treat others is a direct reflection of how you feel about yourself. You may not think others notice, but they do. You may think that it is everyone else, but it is you. You are the only one in control of you. If you come across 100 people in a day and they are ALL out to get you, wouldn’t it make more sense that perhaps it is just you and your attitude? You are, afterall, the one common denominator in every situation you are found in. If you go out into the world looking for a fight, you will find one that you have created all by yourself.
If you are kind to yourself, you will be kinder to others. If you are patient with yourself, you will be more patient with other people.
Don’t let your internal dialogue be so negative that you start affecting other people.
No person is an island of themselves; we are all apart of the same world. Your actions towards other people DO have consequences, whether or not they are apparent today or tomorrow. We affect each other; from the people we love the most, all the way to the person checking us out at the grocery store. Every. Single. Person. Is relevent. You are relevent.

Change your thoughts, change your words to others, your actions and people will start to respond differently to you. The way people act towards you is a direct reflection of how you feel about yourself and how you in turn made them feel.

Happiness is a decision

Happiness is a decision. Happiness should not be placed upon a single act or a possession. There is so much to be happy about in this life that it can be overwhelming to me when I sit and think about all the beauty in the world.

I am not rich. I do not live a life of leisure. I have children and chores and dinner to cook and bills to pay, yet I remind myself constantly to take in the beautiful chaos that surrounds me and soak it in and to remember to be happy.

I used to get caught up in the idea ( and still do every now and then), that I will be happier tomorrow; that I will be happy if only I had what I desired in life all the time. This is a common reason for people to be unhappy, yet we forget that the sweet without the sour would never taste so sweet. It is how we deal with the sometimes negative aspects and circumstances of our lives that proves our strength to ourselves.

I have two little people watching me; they are little sponges taking in everything I do, every reaction I have about day-to-day occurrences and they are learning from my example. I want to be their role model. I want them to remember their mommy smiling and being positive and happy on those days that they want to give up. I want them to absorb the happiness surrounding them.

I couldn’t care less about having more money, if it meant less time with my family. I do not want delayed and planned happiness on the weekends only, or on family vacations. I want happiness now. I want daddy to be home and have the kids run to greet him and have him soak in their hugs and kisses because regardless of what the world has been like to him today, he has come home to a loving family. I am happy now. I look around at the chaos of toys and crayons and books and clothes that accumulate every few hours and I smile because this is life happening before my eyes. These are my kids being kids. They will help to clean up their messes but in the meantime, they are fully enjoying being kids. This is my happy.
There is happiness and beauty on a rainy day and a sunny day. The rain will surely bring on a rainbow and the sun will help to dry the rain and grow the green grass and flowers. We need both and there is happiness to be found in both.

I look around and think about all the possessions I think I own. How can I own anything in this world that money can buy when it can be broken, burned down or worn out? I can really like something, but love, not love. These things sometimes give me temporary happiness but they are not what I think of when I need to smile when all I want to do is cry.

We can so easily be caught up in the idea that more we have, the happier we will be in life. We go out and buy big houses with rooms we never go in, and buy cool and hot air to make it the perfect comfortable temperature. We decorate to look at pretty things we can never touch. We buy cars we cannot afford to impress people we do not know and we work extra hours at work to make sure we have enough money to buy more stuff. Stuff. Things. These are not happiness makers. These are temporary bandages on real issues if we do not face our problems. If we do not nurture our families and friends. We have to start putting more value on people and less on things because when we die, people will mourn us, not all of the things we bought.

I like nice things too, don’t get me wrong and they make me feel happy when I buy them and when I look at them and use them, but I make sure I know that I lived without them before I bought them and should be prepared to if they should ever be gone. I make sure to not place all of my happiness on these things and make sure I know that the temporary high I get from buying something on sale that I really wanted is in no way equal to the permanent high I feel from love and laughter of my family and friends.

To have the best of everything is this life isn’t about possessions but it is about nurturing ourselves, our loved ones and really getting to the depths of people we meet and people we care about. That is where happiness in found. In ourselves, in others, in our surroundings. If all you see is the ugly in people and in the world, then maybe you need to look within yourself and change your perspective.

The “ME” disease.

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The “me” mentality is a disease. It’s the belief that you are an island in this world. The thought, (or lack of thinking for that matter), that the world revolves around you and that by simply wanting something to come true it should happen for you. The problem is that few are willing to admit that they are selfish and self-absorbed, whether it be for a moment or a lifetime.

I am getting older, and beginning to see how selfish people are in this world. I am not a cynic and always strive to see the best in all people, but there are so many people I see that are swimming in a sea of their own self-pity that they can’t even come up for air long enough to see that the people around them are growing tired of constantly having to raise up their spirits. These “me” people are so selfish, only thinking of themselves. I am beginning to distance myself from these type of personalities and focus my energy on those that are worth my while.

These “me” people rarely are interested in how others around them are doing. These “me” people are those people who have a sense of entitlement for all the good in life just for breathing. There is no work involved to achieve their desires and expect things to be handed to them. There are also those that do work hard for things and still do not get all they want so they give up and blame everyone but themselves.

A few signs of a “me” mentality:

If your job isn’t going right and you find yourself blaming other people, you are a “me” person.

If you can’t lose weight and you are blaming outside influences that are “making” you fat, then you are a “me” person.

If you can’t find the right guy because they are all the same, you are a “me” person.

If everything around you feels like it is working against you then you too are a “me” person.

The good news: There is a known cure for the “me” disease! First, let’s look at the one consistent word and person in every bad and unsatisfactory outcome in your life. It is “you” (aka me). Yes, that’s right, sit back and take a look at yourself and see that in each element of your life, you are the only thing that stays consistent, therefore you are the only thing that has the power to change. You can change your outlook and attitude on your life but most importantly, you can change your approach when it comes to doing things and your ways with dealing with other people. Too often we expect other people to change and this feeds into the “me” way of thinking. We are all guilty of it, some more often than others and some more extreme than others.

The best cure is to start listening to other people, change your approach to all things that haven’t worked in the past. If you can’t come up with new approaches then ask people, go on the internet for support and ideas, ask a mentor or an honest friend about your weaknesses and come up with ways of overcoming these obstacles.

I am not perfect, I don’t claim to be and if I feel myself asking “why isn’t this working? I have tried everything. It’s not me, it’s them.” I take a hard look at myself and change my behaviors because I have realized (time and time again), that “me” is the only thing I have the power to change. I have no control over other people’s behaviors and it is in my approach and thinking that will change the outcome of the events in my life.

Sometimes, trying an old approach and old way of doing things ceases to work because circumstances change, as do people and therefore constantly relying on the same approaches every time are less likely to have a favorable outcome.

Einstein’s definition of Insanity: “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results”.

Lesson #1 of 2014

It is better to tell the truth than lie because then you will not have to remember any false stories. But sometimes it is better to not say anything at all, then you can avoid having people manipulate your truths and turn them into their stories.” Monica Haur (me)

Lesson #1 of 2014:

Be careful with whom you speak your stories and thoughts to because they may not know how to correctly represent your truths when retelling your stories and may add their on spices to the original recipe. Remember, that the person retelling the story, will always add in their own interpretations of the original story and may not always speak your truths correctly. This does not make them a bad person, just someone who is misrepresenting you and the sooner you realize this, the sooner you should stop confiding in them.

The trouble I have found, is realizing too late that I have trusted a story-teller with a simple anecdote and they have turned it into a novella.

My advice, always tell the truth, but remember that staying quiet sometimes also will help you stay out of trouble if someone retells your truths using their own version of your story.

Personal Challenge #2

Personal Challenge #2:

Today, do not criticize your loved ones. Whether it is your spouse, your boyfriend/girlfriend, mother/father, roommate or children; do not criticize them today. We all do it to the ones we love the most because we expect more out of them. Bite your tongue today. Walk away before an argument starts. Do not engage.

Why this is an important challenge:

We tend to be the hardest on those we are around the most and often those that we expect the most from. Often times we fall into routines of saying the same things in response to someone’s behavior and actions instead of considering why they may be acting the way that they are acting. The purpose of today is to let them “win” and to reflect on those things you really, really wanted to say and correct but that you instead kept inside. It is interesting how much your attitude towards the person may change (even if only slightly and momentarily) and how you can begin to understand where the other person is coming from.

Sometimes, it is in our silence that our loved ones words truly have meaning. We tend to disregard our loved one’s constant complaints and actions because we are in a routine of doing and saying without thinking. We are unconsciously programmed to repeat the dame critical actions and words every time not because we do not love them, but because we are accustomed to doing those reactions to their actions.

Personal Challenge #2: Biting your tongue.

Let me know how it went in the comment section below. I am interesting in everyone’s findings.

Revelation: Taking Ownership in an Argument

Taking ownership is about looking at yourself, in the raw, and really examining what part you had in an arguement, disagreement, hurt feelings etc with another person. To say that you didn’t do ANYTHING is completely the opposite of taking ownership, by simply being involved in the situation, you have some sort of responsibility in its occurrence and in its resolution. Regardless of how small or large a part you had in it.
One of the hardest things in this world for us humans to do is to take full responsibility for our actions and the reaction and consequences of them- whether intended or not. You cannot simply say that you didn’t mean what you said or did to be offensive or taken the way it did and have the responsibility be shifted from you and onto the other person(s). You must take a look from the outside, eliminating emotions and really look at the situation.
It is hard for me to take out the emotions when listening to how I may have hurt someone’s feelings. It is something I am constantly reminding myself to practice.
If a person is direct with me, my immediate impulse is to go on the defensive, but if I remember to take out the emotion and really listen rationally, almost like an outsider, it is much easier for me to see how I may have unconsciously done something rude, hurtful etc etc.
“You must not blame those for your hurt feelings. They belong to you afterall.” I heard this on the radio the other night and the more the man spoke, the more I resonated with his words. What I took from his words were that not everyone is going to like us and speak of us kindly despite our efforts to be a good person to them. It is not our job, nor our business to know what these people think of us because if they truly knew our good nature, we would never be in the position to defending ourselves. But also, it is important to know that not everyone thinks the way that we do and words can be interpreted in so many different ways; what might be humorous to one person, may be rude and offensive to another. If someone hurts your feelings, and you do not know this person very well, maybe give them the benefit of the doubt that they weren’t purposefully trying to offend.

On the other hand, if you do know them, then take into account their personality, their situation and even your current state because the same words can be said to us while we are in a foul mood or a good mood and be taken completely differently. Take a step back and see how YOU could have made the situation escalate to an argument.
This has not helped me 100% of the time fix a situation, but it has helped me understand how to place myself into other people’s shoes. It has taught me how to feel better in the knowledge that I am taking the mature step in taking responsibility for the situation and that when the other person is ready, so will I be without the added emotion and defensiveness that is normally present.