Burning rituals have been a part of society since civilizations first took shape. It seems that the act of allowing flames to consume things has healing properties. While the ceremonies of burning rituals do not all contain the same supply list or formal procedures, they all do have two things in common: fire and something to burn.
On a recent getaway with some of my gal pals, we lamented emotions and worries that were weighing heavily on us. As we sought respite in food, drinks, and re-runs of Friends, we were inspired (in part by Phoebe’s idea in “The One with the Candy Hearts”) to have our own burning ritual.
We would each write down the things that were weighing on us and then toss them in the fire. (Our rental cabin had the MOST amazing fireplace.) It took no time at all for each of us to jot down the issues we would like to see go up in flames. Before we decided to just willy-nilly toss our troubles into the fire, we thought it would be best to research burning rituals to see if there was anything that would increase the effectiveness of our sacrifice.
We are all familiar with the “If you can’t say something nice…” adage, but how often to we put effort into leaving our lousy thoughts out of what we say?
Last week I was angry. Angry at someone I care a great deal about. Angry at the choices they had been making. Those choices felt unfairly selfish to me. When I voiced my anger to my friend Emily, she helped put things into perspective. Emily reminded me that the person I was mad at wasn’t necessarily being selfish; they were being human. Each decision they made was done so because they thought it was the appropriate choice for them.
Of course, Emily was right and I needed to quit being so judgmental.
This week, as I was taking a drive with my friend Chelsea, she was lamenting the overly critical nature of one of her family members. The nature of their hypercritical haptics was exhausting her. We came up with the brilliant idea that people should quarantine their fault finding fascination. The quarantine of unfair judgment and social criticism would be a great way to cure the world with kindness and understanding.
We all have that one friend or family member who is just never happy. Whether it’s their job, love life, looks, or the air they breathe, they just aren’t happy.
I have been struggling with a friend like this lately. It is my nature to try to fix things when they are not working. The problem is I can’t fix my friend’s attitude. I can be supportive. I can be kind. I can continue to include that friend in social occasions and conversations, but I can no longer let myself get sucked into the constant vortex of the woe-is-me mentality. I have to free my mind from the belief that I can control someone else’s joy. It’s out of my hands; I need to stop letting it commandeer my mind.
Consider issues in your own life that are out of your control but still seem to hijack your thoughts or contentment.
Is there a situation that seems to unsettle you, but shouldn’t prevent you from being successful? Are there conditions in your life that let you down but should be the least of your worries?
“If it’s out of your hands, it deserves freedom from your mind too.”
Attitudes get a bad wrap. It isn’t the attitude’s fault that we got grounded. It isn’t the attitude’s fault that we got the speeding ticket. It isn’t the attitude’s fault that we were misunderstood and left out in the cold to lick our wounds.
Why you ask?
Well, attitudes don’t choose us. We choose the attitude.
Just as we blame a tire for going flat, it isn’t the tire’s fault we drove over a nail or broken glass. It isn’t the tire’s fault that we drove it until the tread wore too thin. It isn’t the tire’s fault that your husband likes to gawk and spends more time driving on the rumble strips along that highway than he does between the yellow lines. 😉
Just as a tire that is neglected becomes flat, so do our attitudes.
I was in danger of suffering from flatitude when people started texting on cell phones. I wanted nothing to do with texting. I found it annoying, lazy, and a depreciation of the communication between members of the human race. My attitude towards texting was downright hostile. Continue reading “A Flat Attitude or “Flatitude””→
Tears are the last things we need to shed before starting a new school year.
When we begin a new semester, we need to get rid of a lot of stuff before we get rid of tears.
First of all get rid of any bad attitudes. Bad attitudes = bad outcomes
Second, let go of preconceived notions about a certain person or class. What we believe to be true may be based on misunderstanding, falsehood, or a sliver of truth. Give them the benefit of the doubt. The benefit of letting go may result in a terrific learning experience.
Thirdly, each new beginning means an end. You can celebrate the fact that you have passed another milestone in your life and begun a new chapter in your learning career. Not only are you turning over a new leaf when you change your attitude, you are turning a new page in your own personal history book… The Book of How Awesome You Are
Fourth, remove inhibitions and fears. The class or experience that may have you in knots just might be the one thing that holds your year together. You don’t want fear to be the glue that holds your entire year together do you?
Finally, break the mold of the mundane. Don’t embrace the same habits and routine of years previous. Make new friends. Try new practices and sports. Heck, give a new food a chance. Your year can only be successful and rewarding if you work toward something. Make that something a NEW you through bigger and better experiences.
By: Melanie A. Peters
P.S. There may not be any crying in baseball, but sometimes there will be crying in education. Just don’t let those tears fall because of a new beginning.
Singing has always been an important part of my life. In particular church and country music have played prominent roles in what I felt moved to sing. For this reason the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville, Tennessee has always held a very special, almost sacred, spot in my heart.
In early June, two of my sisters and I took our mom to Nashville to celebrate a very special birthday. As part of the trip we enjoyed a show at the Grand Ole Opry. It was fantastic! There was even a special guest appearance by Alison Krauss. Lori Morgan was the closing session’s host and we were introduced to the sounds of an AMAZING gospel group called The Whites. (You have to hear them!)
The next day I thoughtI purchased tickets for the four of us to tour the Grand Ole Opry, the Ryman Auditorium, and the Gaylord Hotel. When we made our call to confirm our tickets, we learned that the tour had actually changed two days earlier (but it hadn’t been edited on their website) and instead we would be visiting the Grand Ole Opry and the Nashville Wax Museum. This was NOT a happy point in the trip.
To make a long story short, my sisters ditched the falsely-advertised tour. Mom and I went on the tour of the Grand Ole Opry and skipped out on the wax museum.
Just as “bygone” is a compound word, worry and guilt compound when we fail to leave them behind.
Two years ago we had one of the wettest springs I can recall. There were terrible storms. During one of the storms, lightening struck one of our cows. She happened to be the one my hubby told our kiddos was his “favorite.” After torrential rains fell for a few days, the creek got out of its banks and washed away the “favorite” cow. We know it washed her away because multiple people called to say they saw here swiftly floating down the creek. It was not a happy situation.
My kids still remember that “favorite” cow every time the creek runs high. They say, “Daddy, do you remember when your favorite cow died?” and he always responds with, “Yes, I remember when my favorite cow died.”
There are so many things I wish I could forget and even more I wish I didn’t.
As my 20th high school reunion looms, there are words, experiences, and embarrassments I wish I could forget. If I could just forget them, I would be free to worry about what I am going to wear, who is going to watch my kids, or how much older I look than I did in 1997.
However, the teenage angst I imposed on myself and the nature of teenagers made high school tough. So tough, in fact, that I purposefully kept distance from most everything I related to those four hallowed years. Those ugly emotions and insecurities held me captive for two decades. Sometimes I still have butterflies in my stomach, when I run into people from high school.
In the planning of our class reunion, Amanda (class president) hunted me down on Facebook and became my “friend.” I have always admired Amanda’s calm demeanor and terrific sense of humor, so I was like, “Cool. Amanda and I are friends again.” After I became Amanda’s “friend,” Amber, Angie, and Jennifer found me and we became friends again. Then I found Casey and Tamara, and we became “friends” again. I think you can see where this is going. Continue reading “Freedom in the form of Forgetfulness – Wise Words Wednesday”→