To Thine Own Self
Direct Answers - Column for the week of December 6, 2004
Someone gave me a bit of advice, and I'm doing my best to get my head wrapped around it, trying to understand and comprehend and translate it into my own life. What does it mean to "follow your own heart"?
Lisa, Dante's "Divine Comedy" opens with the author saying, "Midway in the journey of our life, I found myself in a dark wood, for the straightforward path had been lost." That is how many people feel. It is as if they are searching for an answer when they don't know the question.
In your quiet moments, with no concern for anyone but yourself, what are your dreams? Your desires? What are your hobbies? Your interests? What did you like to do when you were young? If someone gave you a lot of money, what would you do? Often what you would do doesn't take money, but if you had money, you would feel the freedom--the unburdening--to do it.
Most of us have a talent for complicating the obvious. The amoeba, a one cell organism, has a lesson for us all. It moves toward and embraces what it authentically needs, and it moves away from the uncongenial. That is all we need to do in life, and it applies to everything--people, jobs, leisure activities, and studies.
This method is extremely simple. It is so simple people don't realize how powerful it is. In the course of time, it can create the kind of life we want. Is it sometimes wasteful? Yes, sometimes we follow false trails. Will we sometimes feel our life is stalled? Yes, but at a deeper level we are moving forward.
People who follow this simple technique, in time, feel as if their lives were guided by an unseen hand. They gain a sense of destiny. What once seemed like random events, they know occurred for a purpose. They end up living a life which fulfills them.
Wayne & Tamara
I Love Lucy
My mother is making dinner for the holidays, and she invited my mother-in-law who is undergoing chemotherapy. My mother-in-law is very upbeat about her condition, but she constantly talks about the details of her illness.
The problem is this. My dad died from cancer 10 years ago. He and mother were very private about his illness and never brought it up with company unless someone asked. Mother was devastated by his death and has a hard time listening to other people's cancer stories.
My mother told me she is going to call my mother-in-law and tell her a guest, who will be at the dinner, had cancer before and does not want to talk about cancer or have it discussed. That isn't true, but mom said the guest will play along.
I feel uncomfortable with this. I told my mother, but she said it's her dinner and she is going to do it. I always treat my mother-in-law as a second mother, but my mother and my mother-in-law have a standoffish relationship. Since my mother is making an issue of this, it seems to be my problem, or is it?
Jennifer, a sonnet by Edna St. Vincent Millay contains the lines, "There are a hundred places where I fear to go,--so with his memory they brim." That is where your mother is. But your mother-in-law is, as another poet said, raging against the dying of the light.
Your mother's scheme reminds us of the sitcom "I Love Lucy." Each episode involved a ruse, and when the ruse was discovered, all was forgiven. In real life subterfuges blow up and cause bad feelings. The guest's "cancer" may be all your mother-in-law needs to helpfully suggest support groups, books, and treatments.
The real problem is two mothers who don't get along. Go to the dinner, but don't be a party to this ruse.
Wayne & Tamara
About The Author
Authors and columnists Wayne and Tamara Mitchell can be reached at www.WayneAndTamara.com.
Send letters to: Direct Answers, PO Box 964, Springfield, MO 65801 or email: DirectAnswers@WayneAndTamara.com.
Sharing Your Experiences and Your Potential!
Who dares to teach must never cease to learn. - John Cotton Dana
If I Hurt You, Then Im Sorry
This statement has stopped many a war in my house. My oldest two children are two years apart in age and would fight about everything and nothing when they were little. One would anger the other and then deny that it ever happened. One would accidentally harm the other during play and not want to accept responsibility for the other's anger. Seldom did a day pass by that one of them wasn't screaming at the other for some horrible crime. It never failed when I would be brought in to mediate, they'd both claim they were innocent and the other was bad. How many times did one of them try to convince me that the other was lying and just trying to frame them for a crime they didn't commit. What's a parent to do?
Anything That?s Worth Doing, Is Worth Doing Poorly
Yes you got it. You read it correctly. We're not out of our minds. We really are saying that "anything that's worth doing is worth doing poorly". When we found this quote by Joachim DePosada on the web site: The Gary Halbert Letter, it struck such a huge cord. It made such immediate sense to us. The more we looked the more we realised that our lives were built around this quote. What about yours?
H-U-G-S -------The More You Give----The More You Get!
How many of us couldn't use a hug on a daily basis----------well, when you get out of bed as part of your daily practice in the morning wrap your arms around yourself and just say "Good Morning----What a Great Day to be Alive!!!!"
Shame and Guilt: A World of Difference
Learning to distinguish between two powerful emotions - superficially very similar but in practice, very different - is essential not only for healthy self-esteem but for fulfilling interpersonal relationships.
Changing the World... One Book at a Time
Ever read a book that's changed your life? Most of the today's most beloved authors and spiritual teachers can recall a book that started them on the journey toward spirituality and success.
Inspirations: Even More Things Ive Noticed Along the Way So Far
Some people live in and talk about the past so much it's as if they are "planning for the past."
Principles That Govern My Life
The strength and durability of a building is found in its foundation. The same is true in a life. What we accomplish and the effect we have on those around us is not only in what we do, but also in who we are. In fact, what we do is driven by who we are, what we believe and value and by the principles that we live by.
My Lost Immortality
Oh my God, I'm not immortal anymore! What happened? Where's my neverending youth? My long summers? My bright future?
Direct Answers - Column for the week of October 14, 2002
8 Ways to Get Your Healthy Groove On
You've heard the saying, "You are what you eat." I say? "You Are What You Think!"
Ever Wondered Why Everyone Else is Moving On, Except You?
"I attend courses, read books, listen to CD's, yet I am still not living the life I want to and am unhappy with the life I have. How can I have the life I want to have?"
What We Believe We Create - Love is the Creation
I once was told by the Angels that our concept of Love would fit on the head of a straight pin and the size of the Universe and more is the love that is felt for us by God and the Angels. If this is so, and I believe that it is ... just think of what we can create if we allow our concept of Love to grow ... to encompass it ... to become it.
Extreme Self Care
EXTREME is not a term usually connected to self-care. Self-care usually portrays a picture of gentleness, kindness, loving self or being nurturing. People don't consider it necessary to take extreme action when it comes to self-care. Why?
Inside Secrets On How To Stay Afloat During Tough Times
Do you find yourself asking questions when tough times come like, 'Why has this come my way?' or 'What did I do to deserve it?' It has sometimes crossed my mind, 'Why me?' when I'm faced with what seemed like an insurmountable problem.
Those who pride themselves on their honesty should also concern themselves with this principle: The effectiveness of honesty depends on a person's willingness to face the truth, which may conflict with this person's desires and provoke denial.
Problems Arent Bad After all!
At first glance, when tough times hit, it seems the world around you is crashing down. You're surrounded by a sea of problems, threatening to engulf you any minute from now. A second, more discerning glance however, could reveal a totally different, even exciting perspective! Could God be the author of your "problems?"
How Four Words Can Enhance Your Life Of Prayer (Pray More In My Hectic Day? You Cant Be Serious)
"I would like to pray more. But ... how to find the time?"
Launch Yourself Into Living
Memorial Day weekend, 2004, found my wife and I along with friends, relaxing in a nice camp setting in Hershey, Pennsylvania. We had a great time at the Hershey Factory Tour Experience, which included, among a dozen other attractions, an excellent 3D movie presentation which wasn't quite like a movie at all, but a true experience, complete with misters and blowers that would alternately sprinkle you with a fine spray of water or tickle your ankles with a subtle burst of air, in concert with events happening on screen. An exploding green blob or skittering spider-like creatures for example. There were occasions when a the sweet odor of chocolate would waft through the air as well.
It's funny how an acquaintance from the past just pops into your head sometimes. Usually the flashback is brought on by a phrase someone says, or a thought you have. Today my particular flashback was induced by the words "this guy," which were uttered by one of the custodians where I work, as we passed in the hall.
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