Posts Tagged ‘Gratitude’

Let’s take a look at Thanksgiving

I try to look at this as a day of gratitude. Counting my blessings but keenly aware of the increased suffering of the masses.


Growing up for me, one parent could work, one could stay home and be financially safe. Maslow hierarchy of needs were taken care of. Life was simpler, easier it seemed.



I see more people suffering now, than any point in my life. The homeless situation is at epic levels. Not just drug addicts, bums and mentally ill but whole families beg on street corners. Our happiness in a spiritual sense is tied to the happiness of our downtrodden.



22 vets commit suicide everyday for last two years without much trepidation. We would never take 22 battlefield deaths a day for more than a week in our current so called wars. Peak incidence for PTSD in a war is two plus decades after war ends. We have never engaged in a war this long or deployed and redeployed troops like this.





Our pharmaceutical companies and doctors helped create an opioid epidemic nationwide without any consequences. They have increased foster children across this country and damaged the fabric of our country for profit. I see no indictments, no consequences except for the poor end-user. Doctors and pharmaceutical companies are not held responsible for the epidemic they created.




Corporations make double-digit profits with hospitals that may save your life one day, but take your house and everything you own six months later with aggressive debt collectors.


I wish we cared more for the unfortunate, the needy. Look at the amount of money spent on the midterm elections. What a waste. We could feed or give healthcare to the needy instead of political commercials.



In conclusion, we need to give more, care more about others on this journey.  We are not in competition with others but journey together.  All those possessions, all that status and power, evaporate when we die.



what is left is a legacy of helping others or nothing!  Give today and add to your legacy.

5 Things Happy People Consistently Do By John D. Moore, PhD

Happiness can be a habit


Do what happy people do if you want to feel good. Joyful individuals behave in certain ways, avoiding some actions and embracing others. When you stop doing what makes you feel bad and do more of what improves your mood, you’ll be happy too.


1. Avoid procrastination

Procrastination increases stress and won’t make you happy. The most satisfied people in the world get on with tasks, especially those they dislike. They know they will be relieved when jobs are complete and not have to worry about them.

Carry out chores you hate early in the morning when you have the most energy. As a result, you’ll feel liberated from burdens and free to enjoy the rest of the day with a smile.


2. Build gratitude
Happy people aren’t just grateful; they develop gratitude with positive thoughts. They count their blessings, making themselves hyper-aware of the abundance in their lives. Likewise, they appreciate the little gems of life around them, like rainbows and wildlife.

Generate happy thoughts by focusing on gratitude. List the prosperity available to you, including shelter, food, love, and anything else that pops into your head. Also, spend at least ten minutes appreciating positive aspects of your day.


3. Exercise
Get moving! Stagnation, also known as sitting for too long, causes ill-health. Exercise increases feel-good chemicals. Happy people are active. They might also rest, but they don’t loll on the couch for long periods.

Go to the gym. Attend exercise classes. Or take a stroll. Walking each day improves physical and emotional health. For added benefits, exercise outdoors; nature calms the soul. It reduces stress, increasing room for joy.



4. Quit worrying
Everyone worries, but people who are always happy know when to stop. They understand worrying makes them ill and doesn’t solve problems. Your unhappiness will increase if you worry, so learn how to quit.

When troubling thoughts arise, shift your focus. Don’t dwell on problems that run through your mind and make them grow. Studies show distraction and positive thinking lessen worries. Happy people combine the two by entertaining themselves with upbeat thoughts.


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The Need to Please”: values and intentions



”Whether or not you’re connected to your values and intentions, you’re always making choices about how to behave in the present moment.



Unfortunately, the desire to avoid painful experiences such as anxiety or feelings of worthlessness often takes precedence over acting out of your heart’s wisdom and intention (Roemer and Orsillo 2009).



For example, you may value honesty and authenticity but, in an effort to avoid anxiety, react by running from conflict, saying yes instead of no, or being overly cheerful.



In that case, the reaction to move away from difficult emotions distances you from your values and inner wisdom.


It also perpetuates the chronic people-pleasing cycle.


Once again, what started as a way to gain love and acceptance and avoid suffering paradoxically caused a different kind of suffering.



As you become increasingly distanced from what is meaningful and valuable in your life, you perpetuate the disconnection from yourself and end up feeling resentful, angry, or depressed.


In addition, you don’t engage in behaviors that might help you find yourself again, such as self-care, self-compassion, or following what’s true in your heart.


All of this heightens the tendency to not act from your values and intentions.

Emotions part 2, two!

Neuroscience with the help of functional MRI’s tell us our positive, joyful emotions are located in the left prefrontal cortex.



This region lights up brightest during deep focus, as in meditation. We let thoughts fade and enter our creative, thoughtless, right hemisphere.



That means our emotions are most positive when we are not thinking.



How can that be. I always thought, the mind’s ability to think, solve problems, was the greatest, largest function of the mind. Not even close.



The mind’s creative side is enormous, maybe toward infinity. This side is the Pacific Ocean, the cognitive side, a beach ball floating in that vast ocean.



Explore your emotions today. Bring awareness to the next emotion.



What thought is connected to it. Can you think of a joyful thought. Does an emotion come attached.



Now think of someone who has wronged you. Any emotion attached to it?



Happy hunting.

Our Blind Force: “DESIRE”


“Everyone would agree that desire is natural and plays an essential role in helping us to realize our aspirations.


But desire is only a blind force that in itself is neither helpful nor harmful.”

Matthew Ricard
My two cents: We have erroneously judged many things to contain happiness, that only offer momentary pleasure or avoidance of blame.


We think praise from others contains happiness! We think criticism damages our soul.



Neither has anything to do with happiness. External stimuli does not decide our wellbeing.


Nothing external can reach our spirit, our soul.



Victor Frankl came out of Auschwitz and wrote “Man’s Search for Meaning.”


The human spirit, our soul can find meaning in the worst of conditions.


The human spirit can also find suffering in the best of conditions.



It is our choice to find purpose and meaning out of the only life we have.

Giving: a powerful action, a life changing act if repeated.

In the previous post, “Performing Acts of Kindness Can Reduce Depression in Disagreeable People”, giving changed their attitude.


Loving Kindness practice, like repeating phrases, “May you be happy” or “May you be safe” did not impact these disagreeable people as much.


Giving is an action, and in this case action influences change.



Action is closer to life, sedentary closer to death.


Takes action to change, to heal, to live fully.


Repetitive action can change habit or the impact of a disorder.


Take daily action, challenge the man/woman in the mirror.


Pay attention to your inner world, a place where you have influence.


Happiness depends on the internal condition, not external circumstances.


When we give without concern for reward, the “Ego” recedes into the background.


We need to feel the contrast between when the “Ego” recedes and being totally present, empty of thought, worry and fear.

Performing Acts of Kindness Can Reduce Depression in Disagreeable People: By Traci Pedersen

When people who are prone to hostility make an effort to engage in acts of kindness toward their close loved ones, it can significantly reduce their depression, according to new research published in the journal, Translational Issues in Psychological Science.


For the study, more than 640 mildly depressed volunteers (average age mid-30s) participated in one of three online compassion training exercises or a control group. The volunteers were asked to complete the instructions and report back via an online platform every other day for three weeks.


Two months later, those participants deemed the most disagreeable showed the most significant reductions in depression and greatest increases in life satisfaction when they performed acts of kindness in close relationships.


Highly disagreeable people often lack empathy, even in their close relationships, says lead author Myriam Mongrain, professor of psychology at York University’s Faculty of Health. But, she points out, “everybody needs people.”



“As a result of their hostility and lack of cooperation, disagreeable types risk getting rejected or ostracized,” says Mongrain. “There is a lot of conflict in their relationships, and they suffer the consequences. We found that providing concrete suggestions to those individuals, giving them ways in which they could express empathic concern in their close relationships was tremendously helpful.”



“Implementing these new behaviours might have left them feeling affirmed and liked in their close social circle. This might have been the anti-depressant ingredient in this group,” she said.


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