Sunday, July 27, 2014

Secret Entry 5: I Got the Power?

I am so sad about what is happening with the news right now. The two Malaysian air flights, one shot down and one still missing. The Algerian plane crash, the war in Israel and the killing of all those innocent civilians, are the girls still missing in Nigeria?, the conflict in Syria. It’s too much and makes me feel so helpless. It really conflicts with the teachings of the Secret. I am torn with wanting to know about what’s going on and trying to help if I can and not wanting to hear such negative news to knock me off my positivity path.
 
One side issue I have with The Secret is that it fully believes that we allow negative things to happen to us. It does not believe that bad things happen to good people or “it is what it is” type of thing. It believes that if you don’t think out your day and plan for it to go a certain way in detail in your mind then you are opening up the universe to plan your day for you and allow anything to happen. This has met with a lot of criticism from people who were hurt or loss loved ones in mass attacks (9/11) or natural disasters (like Katrina). I struggle with that concept because I find it kind of cold.
 
However, every morning for the past couple of weeks after my car accident I do a mental picture of how I want my day to go from the time I get in my car to what I will be doing up until I go to bed. It works… But is it a definite? Can you really avoid bad things from happening. Sure you can take things that happen to you and make something positive out of it be it as a role model, lesson learned, new opportunity for something you wouldn’t have done otherwise. But outside of that, what do you do? I think of those girls who were locked in that basement for like ten years. They were teens/early twenties then I believe. I know The Secret is not saying they deserved what happened to them but the explanation for what happened to them can’t be, well they didn’t think out their day so they allowed any random thing to happen to them that the universe threw out them.
 
I understand the law of attraction but I wonder if we truly have the power to affect everything that comes our way. Yes we have free will but ultimately isn’t it all about what The Creator (however you choose to call him/her) decides? Can you truly believe you can control your life with such detail while at the same time believing that ultimately it’s in God’s proverbial hands? Or is it the belief that whatever you throw out into the universe that you want, even if it’s just to get a parking space, is therefore, the same that God wants for you? Is that too convenient a thought? Do we have the power?

Sunday, July 20, 2014

My Secret Entry 4: Thinking in the Now

My next challenge is thinking in the now. I can easily say to myself I want to lose weight or I want to be a certain weight or size by a certain date. However according to the Secret, you have to think you have it all now or you’ll forever be in the realm of trying and wanting.

So I have to say, think and feel that I’m already at the weight I want to be or already have the great relationship I’ve been dreaming of. How do you do that without feeling silly or delusional? If your goal is to be married to a wonderful husband, how do you actively feel that way and tell yourself that you already have it and thank the Lord for it? If you see an outfit in a size 6 and you are a size 10 do you get the size 6 because that’s your goal size and the size you tell yourself you are? Seriously how does that work right?

So after reading the chapter on relationships (which I think was way too short and in need of more detail). I discovered that to get the relationship/marriage you desire, you don’t walk around like a crazy person talking about your imaginary Larry boyfriend. You have to be in a loving state of mind. Prepare your life to have room for love (so I guess my collection of stuffed animals on display wouldn’t fly if I was living with a guy so I suppose I shouldn’t keep them propped up- this is an example of course, I really don’t have a pile of stuffed animals I can’t part with…).

Do the things you love to do (and no, saying well I don’t love work so I won’t go, doesn’t work- find something you love about it, like, er, getting paid!).

Think of things and people that you love and of course make sure you love yoself.

And within all this love fest you will, ta-da, attract more love. Because, and it’s taking a moment to click with me, the Secret is all about The Law of Attraction. Everything you say/think/do will act like a magnet to attract more of it. If you call yourself a klutz, low and behold, you will keep being in situations where you trip and knock things over. If you believe you are a great singer then you will find that people around you will think (or at least tell) you are (this explains the people who end up on American Idol auditions sounding a hot mess, no one around them told them they sound like a dying cat).

So don’t just pretend, be it. Or in Yoda’s words “Do or do not, there is no try” or something like that. 

Sunday, July 13, 2014

My Secret Entry 3: Positive Thinking

The main challenge with my journey into the Secret is maintaining positive thinking. I’m not Oscar the Grouch all the time but I’m not skipping around seeing rainbow and butterflies (by the way, I hate butterflies, they scare me- see there I go again). 

The point is thinking lovely thoughts from morning to sleepy time is not an easy thing for me.
But I have devoted myself to putting my all into this for at least 30 days which is how long, I’ve read, it takes to make something a habit.

And let me tell you, this is work. I wake up and before I get out of bed I envision my day down to the small things like what I will eat. Then I go through my morning ritual while giving thanks as I do them (which is no easy task, sometimes, although in theory I am thankful, I don’t feel it in my bones as I side listen to some mass shooting in a state on TV). I also do self checks through out the day. How do I feel? Am I actually feeling content or happy? The part of the Secret that is the kicker is that you can’t just say or think positive, you have to feel it. 

Like how would you feel if you won the lottery? What does that physically feel like? You gotta actually feel that way all the time. Lemme tell ya, not an easy task. So no, I don’t actually go around 24/7 jumping for joy. I do it in spurts and the rest of the time I just try to make sure I feel content and avoid bad feelings as best I can.

I will say it helps. Yesterday when leaving work, I tried the “lotto feeling” as I call it. I was whistling from my office to the car, around the grocery store. I genuinely felt good. I came home. Ate some dinner. Was starting to feel lethargic but I needed to go workout. So I took myself out and still felt ugh (ok, so I had some Cheetos and I know that didn’t help). But I started jogging. I was shaky about whether I could do my 5k jog/walk I usually do after my poor eating choices but I still felt positive and I kept thinking “I got this”. Morale of the story, not only did I have it, I ran my fastest half mile and during the second half of the jog, felt energized, sang along (okay one sentence, I got tired) to my music and was SMILING as I jogged. 

Power of positive thinking.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

The Secret Entry 2

So after a car accident yesterday in which my NEW car is now in the shop.  I decided its time I start taking these teachings of the Secret seriously. The lessons clearly stated that I should not just let life happen to me but to instead have control over my day. Wake up with a positive mood, give thanks, plan/visualize your day.

I didn't do that yesterday but I made sure before I went to sleep I didn't dwell on the accident or think of yesterday as a negative day. I focused on the good of the day before I went to sleep (day off, got some reading in, cooked, worked out, got some errands done after I got my rental, napped, wrote a blog post and worked on my writing- basically I got an extra day to accomplish things). Right after the accident I was feeling myself getting stressed and tearful but I parked my beat down car, went in my house, made an appointment for the body shop and a rental and proceeded to read some of The Secret until my appointment. I must say my sadness and stress about the situation dissipated and has not returned. I feel like I can handle this and the fiance of it all won't prevent me from doing what I want to do (I have some trips planned and I still feel positive that I will still be able to go).

This morning I visualized my day down to the smaller things: go to work with no accidents, not be annoyed by anything at work, go home and work on my writing, workout. Then from the time my feet hit the floor through washing up I gave thanks for all the things I'm blessed for.
How'd my day  go? No accident, in fact, got to work early. Not annoyed at work, day went pretty quickly. Working on my writing now as I wait for a friend to go workout!

Hmm, next up. Car shop told me I'd get my car back between Friday and Monday. But I'm thinking Thursday after work I'm getting my car back. If anyone ask that's what I'm saying. That's what I believe...

Monday, July 7, 2014

The Secret to My (Hopeful) Success

So a wiser higher up gave me a list of books to read to help lead me to successful leadership. She told me I had to read the list of 10 books in the order she listed them (not sure why yet). The first being the ever popular The Secret. Of course I'd heard of this concept before but being cynical as usual I thought it was a bunch of crap. Positive thinking and you'll just get what you want? Yeah right. Bad things happen because you allow it? Sounds cold to me.

But as I read the book, I can't help but think, some of this stuff sounds good. And, hey, what can it hurt if I go all in and give it a try?

Halfway into the book I've learned these tips so far:
  • Think about what you do want , not what you don't want (ex. I want to lose weight vs. I want to be a size six, the latter is best because it is more exact, the former will just keep you in the loop of wanting to lose weight)
  • Think of the things you are grateful for (focus on your health instead of not liking your shape)
  • Think as though you already have it and really have the feeling that comes with it
  • Ask for what you want and believe it will come (like ordering some shoes on line, you believe they will come, you don't call the store every day to ask them is it coming)
  • Say Thank you every day as often as you can, start your day with it
  • Create your day don't let your day create you, think in the morning how you want your day to go and if something negative happens, think of it in a different light before going to bed to "reset" your mind for the next day (in other words avoid starting a day with negative energy)
  • Visualize what you want ( a vision board helps)
So from time to time, I will post about my journey following the secret. For a "realist" like me, it'll be tough  but I'm ready to give it a try.

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Pay to Play

So a friend and I were discussing paying while dating and in a relationship. Both of us admitted that we are old fashioned kind of gals and don't care much for the 50/50 bit. We also stated that we don't much care for a guy asking us to pay either. But we aren't stingy. I don't mind paying for dates, I just like to feel like a lady who is being courted. If we are doing 50/50 then it doesn't feel that way. I don't have a formula for what percentage is should be. It differs depending on the guy for various reasons.

The key is that I do like to contribute in a relationship. I don't want a guy to end up asking me to start paying for things but I have found that, inevitabely, this will happen. But here's how it goes:

Date 1 - guy pays, no questions
Date 2- guy pays again
Date 3- I offer to help, he says no, sometimes adds an insulted face or an "I'm the man, I pay"
Sometime during the dating game the guy ask in some way or another when I will pay.
Umm, K. I pay. No problem. And then I find myself paying more and more.

Morale of the story, those guys wanted to show off in the beginining which then lead the woman to be accostumed to a certain behavior. Then the guy may not be able to keep up with the expense or start to feel taken advantage of. The woman, assuming she is not selfish, wants to show she isn't all about self and she agrees to pay. But then she finds herself paying more than she thought. Maybe even 50/50 and she starts to become resentful. And who wants to have that conversation about money? Not comfortable.

So what's the fix? I think women need to be clear about their views regarding financially contributing  when dating. I have a friend who states it point blank early on in dating and she hasn't raised a complaint. I think if you tell a guy, hey, I do like to be courted but I'm not selfish and will contribute from time to time (and then actually do that, maybe, earlier on in the relationship) then everyone should be clear on what's expected. On the guys front, do what you can afford to do and if a woman offers then accept that (although not before the first two dates, real talk- if she offers before that she's just doing what she thinks is nice).

But that's just my thoughts.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Youth of a Nation

Recently someone close to me had her house burglarized, not once, but twice. In another part of town a woman heading into her suburban house from her car at night was robbed of her purse. Still another area of the state a person pulls out a gun and starts shooting at people in the middle of the day also in the suburbs.
What do they all have in common?
The perpetrators were all teenagers.
I won't spend too long on my soapbox but I had to get this off my chess. Crime is nothing new. Crime by teens is not new but it seems to be growing. From the much publicized mass killings we hear about on TV by young men to the quieter crimes.
What has happened in our world where some kids are raised not to care about and respect others? Has parenting changed? Is the community less involved which effects the moral development of the child?
This is not a white/black, rich/poor thing. It has crossed all lines. Of course it's not everyone and perhaps part of the problem is that we spotlight and give attention to these criminals which only encourages others who are desperate and disturbed.
What bothers me about the teens who committed the robberies was that they did not respect the fact that these were women who lived in that house and a woman whose purse they snatched. These males weren't concerned about protecting these females. Instead they caused harm. Perhaps this is old school thinking but I'm not giving up on the idea that there should be a certain level of respect that men should have for women. Especially women in their own community.
The whole thing makes me sad really. When and why do some stop caring about their community?
To see people within your own neighborhood/school/job have such little respect for those around them drives me insane. I was blessed with never being in a state of mind where I'd want to harm others or have no respect for the life others have built.
At some point we have to respond differently to these acts. It's not working.