Monday, July 24, 2017

Naughty or Nice?


Based on our entertainment choices, it’s clear we’re preoccupied with monsters. One TV show features weird parasites that make us sick by invading our bodies. We watch movies about creatures assembled from dead body parts, and how under certain circumstances, we might be hiding a maniacal personality or even unleash our inner wolf. Then, underscoring everything, I spotted a decal on a car window that said, “vampire inside.” What does that mean?



Half the population believes people are basically good, while the other half thinks humans are predisposed to naughty behavior. Try to reconcile what you hear with what you see here:

                                         https://youtu.be/h8wVitdTRcQ

Who taught him that? The evidence is obvious—or not. In your opinion, are humans naturally good or naughty? What’s your proof?



Saturday, July 15, 2017

Peaceful Power

I’m a pseudo-meteorologist. You probably don’t hear that confession very often.  My mother said that, as a child, I always asked about the weather conditions. At my house, my husband or kids seem to think I have the inside scoop on the weather. Almost daily one of them asks, “What’s the weather today?” and “How hot is it going to be?” Maybe it’s because they catch me listening to the forecast about twice a day, and more often when a big storm is predicted. I just like to be prepared for whatever comes.


Although I dread getting caught in bad weather, that’s exactly what happened last week. Driving home, a curtain of wind and rain slammed across the windshield. I don’t usually pull over during storms but the blinding rain obscured everything. I couldn’t see and I couldn’t pull over. The curvy road offered no shoulder for the faint – hearted. Fortunately only small branches littered the street and nothing fell into my path. After the storm, numerous split tree trunks testified to the storm’s strength.
A tornado‘s power is amazing, and one videographer managed to capture beauty amidst chaos. Take a look:
                                         https://youtu.be/Crpit2DNtw4
Despite a tornado’s massive size and destructive power, it can also create a majestic and tranquil scene. When you find yourself caught up in life’s storms, how do you reclaim peace? 

Modified from August 2011

Friday, July 7, 2017

Sketch of You


  

Once you’re familiar with someone, it’s easy to describe their eye color, their laugh, their funny habits, and their best traits. After recently receiving a loved one’s boxed ashes, the remains failed to convey anything about their owner. Our most important characteristics are captured in photos and conversations, tucked away in our hearts and minds. First impression don’t always provide authentic sketches of people—but sometimes they do. Check out these assessments:

                                
                                         https://youtu.be/PT2ZkeiTxUs

The harder we work to create a positive first impression, the further we get from making one. In initial meetings, be yourself and you’ll connect with the right folks, but not everyone will see the real you and—have a seat for this part—not everyone will like or appreciate what they see. What’s the first impression you want people to form of you?

Friday, June 30, 2017

Eyes Wide Open

You’ve heard of tasks being easy enough to do with your eyes closed. That’s true for knitting or folding clothes, but for other activities, keep your eyes wide open. For instance, when walking on a treadmill at the gym, the repetitive motion of putting one foot in front of the other can lull you into a daze. You might even feel comfortable enough to close your eyes for a few seconds. Don’t do it! Believe me, you  want to keep your hands on the treadmill’s handrails and your eyes wide open. Here’s what could happen when you close your eyes:    

                                         https://youtu.be/dYcvLw_jkkk

There’s a big difference between thinking you’re on the right path and actually being on the right path. This is true for many aspects of life. Once we close our eyes, we’re liable to end up in an unexpected place. If you’ve ever closed your eyes to a situation, what was the outcome?   

Saturday, June 24, 2017

That’s What You Like?


One of our kids dislikes vegetables. This week, I heard a surprising comment about a particular fruit, one that we’ve been buying for years. Apparently, now blueberries are the enemy. In fact, our vegetable-intolerant child called them “sweet peas.” Nice. No wonder we have seven boxes of blueberries in the fridge. I’m hoping fruit preferences change soon, but in the meantime, we’d better find a few blueberry recipes. Whatever we dislike today could very well become our favorite thing tomorrow. One day, these guys may grow to love this:    

                                     https://youtu.be/O0pPIo-ksS0

Some of these items were foreign to me, too, but refer to last week’s blog post for my overall perspective. It takes time to adapt to new tastes, and as time passes, our preferences change. Think about something you dislike. Can you see yourself growing to like and appreciate it in the future?  


Saturday, June 17, 2017

The Secret Life



I enjoy most international foods, but I love Indian food. Whenever we visit an Indian restaurant or get take-out, I get a little euphoric inhaling the curry and cumin  seasonings. Anticipating the delicious flavors turns my eyes into swirly spirals like a animated character. Bet you didn’t know Indian food brought that kind of joy.  

Look closely and you’ll find joyful moments in unexpected places. We look for it in major events, but it’s often found in life’s small spaces. Try to appreciate little moments, like this one:

                                         https://youtu.be/2oZhH4ifqDo

We think we need a lot of money and resources to be happy. Not true. We just have to appreciate the special moments that come our way every day. What’s the one joy-filled moment that cost you nothing?     




Sunday, June 4, 2017

One Day at a Time



Once we think we understand a situation is the moment the surprising, true facts emerge.  As the school year draws to a quick close, one of our kids commented how time flew and that school should continue for at least another month. What? By June, most students, parents, and teachers yearn for the end of the long routine. Throughout the year, our child complains about studying and school-related inconveniences that interrupt web-surfing and other important activities, so it was bewildering to hear a call for more school days. Time is a peculiar thing, and our perspective of it changes depending on who (or what) we are and where we stand. Have a listen:       



                                         https://youtu.be/Bc-YpWBxsHU

No wonder flies escape us so easily and so often. Imagine how life would change if we perceived time differently. Even now, dangerous close calls demonstrate how our reaction times can make the difference between life and death. What situation is moving too fast for you right now, and what would you do now if you knew you would run out of time this week?