Quote of the Day

When we look at our life based on a measuring stick, we focus too much on the inches gained or lost or not changed at all. When you burn the measuring stick and live without limitations, you realize that you have far more mileage in life than you ever dreamed.

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Armed with Knowledge and Understanding

I grew up in a rural town in South Carolina where it was definitely not unusual for girls to know how to fish, hunt, and physically defend themselves if necessary. I’ve never hunted in my life. The opportunity never really presented itself; but once I got to adulthood, I did wonder if I should learn how to handle a gun. I was then in a large city and sometimes better safe than sorry became a constant thought in my mind. I’ve been considering this idea of learning how to handle a gun for some years but never really found a class I felt good about acting on until very recently. I found out about Lawson Handgun Institute here in Chicago by a completely different circumstance that had nothing to do with signing up for a class. I found out about it because of the remarkable woman who owns and runs the facility, Colleen Lawson. Colleen is a gun rights and safety advocate who not only provides I place for you to learn how to properly handle a gun in any situation; she also gives tools that go far deeper than your typical gun safety classes. She uses her classes and curriculum to help her students really understand the type of circumstance they might face that would require them to use a gun, how to be able to judge the situation, and how to really feel comfortable in your right to feeling safe. Colleen is one of the most mellow people I’ve ever met and from the moment I met her, I felt everything I’ve read about her as a person as absolute truth. That’s something that can be found in others; but with Colleen, I knew that it was not a façade to get people to purchase her classes, she practices what she preaches. She believes that knowledge and understanding about our feelings in the moment are as important as how we physically handle a weapon and that a cool, level-headedness is every bit as necessary as technical knowledge of guns. If you would like to learn more about what Colleen has going on at the Lawson Handgun Institute, please go check out her website at www.lawsonhandgun.com . Be safe all!

The Mouth Speaks But Is the Mind Fully Aware?

We’re all guilty of “foot-mouth syndrome” at some point in time. Sometimes, this is the backhanded compliment when we may actually mean to praise someone for something but end up compounding the type of insult that God Himself is putting His head in His hands over. Other times, it could be literally talking out of our asses because we want to be important and feel as if we always have to contribute something by speaking rather than listening more. I can promise that while yes, there comes a time when it will be necessary for you to render an opinion, that time is NOT 24/7. We can learn a lot from the quiet ones. They sit back and observe, filing away information, getting the full picture and even the bonus image just by being in the background more than having to be front and center. It’s time to take our brains off autopilot and train our mouths to learn the art of tact. I realize it’s a relatively LOST art in these times, but even lost art can be restored to original beauty.

The Lesson of Sodom and Gomorrah

It’s easy after ending things with someone to play the “what if game” for a while. What if we give things a few days, weeks, months, then maybe….What if we changed THIS about how we deal? What if I changed x,y,z thing about myself? What if THEY changed? This game can literally go on into eternity. It’s one thing if both sides mutually agree to revisit the relationship and getting back together and not a one person campaign to “get the love back”. If that person made the choice to break up with you, they were fully prepared to live without you. If that relationship has any chance to get to a good place, then the breaker has to be the one to make the first effort. This effort has to prove that there is a true desire to make things work. The key in making that work is to not go back. It’s to move forward and make a new beginning, a new relationship. The relationship broke for a reason. What was being done before wasn’t working and needed to be changed either with that person or with the next. There’s usually always something that has become a destructive pattern that needs correction. This can be the type of people we choose to date and how we choose them, how we act in a relationship, how we determine the important things in the relationship and partner, what we think of ourselves while in a relationship, and how we treat ourselves and our partner while in a relationship. Once we determine that the only way to resurrect our relationship is to work to go back to “the way we were when we were happy”, that’s when we’ve doomed ourselves to turning into a pillar of salt. And when reality comes raining down on you, your hopes for that melts like the Wicked Witch of the West. And that’s not a good look for anybody. Don’t trap yourself in a broken situation. Move yourself into a place of growth and health.

When Labor Stops

I hope everyone’s had a wonderful weekend! We’re starting this week off with new guest blogger, Cynae Punch-Brown. Feel free to leave comments and share some follow love! Cheers! 

 

I can remember (a little too well) when I went into labor. It was a long, painful process that I had been told about, but not really prepared for.  As the baby prepared to come into this world, there were things my body was naturally doing to prepare to propel a little person forward.

In the midst of my labor, my child decided that the world was for chumps, and my womb was the place to be forever. Everything-every contraction, every labor pain just stopped. Just like that, it seemed as though all of the work that I had done for hours on end was for nothing.

As we move towards the actualization of our dreams, sometimes the labor that we have done for days, weeks, months, and even years seems to stop-many times suddenly and without warning.  What we do next makes all the difference in our journey.

While I had a labor plan in place that did not include any help from my doctor, I had to make a decision. Was I going to continue to wait on my original plan to work, or was I going to take the resource that was being offered to me to move things along?  Weary from long labor, I accepted the help. Initially, I was disappointed in myself that I couldn’t make it happen on my own.  Almost instantly, however, I began having full-blown contractions that were honestly more painful than before.  Having to maintain focus on my desired end result, I moved forward in my labor until my little lamb was resting peacefully in my arms.

Sometimes, we confuse a necessary detour, pause, or change in plan as failure.  We lament over what was supposed to be-feeling as if having a little help in our process can somehow take away the fact that we still are the ones putting in the hours of labor.  If anything, our willingness to know when to accept help makes our labor sweeter-it shows us that we have made room in our grand plans to reflect on those pivotal moments when our strategy needs a bit of an addendum to actually help us get to the finish line.

Create avenues in your journey for pause. Don’t be afraid to accept help from those who have a better perspective of different points on our path.  While your labor pains after your detour may initially be more painful than they were when you started, you will be able to propel forward in a way that you may have missed out on had you journeyed alone.  Remember, you don’t want to be exhausted once you cross the line-do whatever it takes to maintain enough energy to enjoy your final outcome.

 

 

If you enjoyed this post by Cynae, go check out her site at www.cynaepunchbrown.com.

It’s a Dark Chocolate Life

Living a bittersweet life on semi-sweet dreams

Counting the cost in bites, chomps and nibbles

Wondering if I will rise to the occasion

Or remove myself from the heat before I’m ready

Am I melting into something beautiful

Or am I just an add on sooner underappreciated

Can I be appreciated in my purity

Or will I always be morphed into what you will find more palatable

I walk the line of pleasure and pain

Breathing ever so lightly

Afraid to tip the scales into sourness

Must I be artificial to get your attention

When you finally decide you’ve had your fill of all the fluff

You’ll have missed my refined substance