Tag Archives: the Legacy project

Lessons for living- Wake Up! To You!

7 Sep

The most important person in your life is guess who? You!!
Remember that old adage if you can’t look after yourself than what good are you other people.
Traveling on airplanes we are always told that if the flight encounters trouble always apply your oxygen mask first before you tend to your kids.
Sounds selfish doesn’t it.
It’s the exact opposite, if you can’t breathe you are hardly going to be able to have the energy required to help your children when they need you most.
This is the same for all relationships that you encounter. If you don’t take care of yourself the relationship will be affected adversely on some level.
If you find it difficult to love yourself you will ultimately find it difficult to love someone else because you find fault within yourself and cannot understand how someone could love someone you don’t love yourself.Eventually you will slowly dismantle your relationship through feelings of unworthiness. Weird isn’t it!
If through abuse of your health you find that you struggle to be the parent your child would love you to be then make a conscious change.

What do you do then?
Spend some time on you and then you will be surprised how people around you react to the new confident you.

  • Think of one thing that you always wanted to do in life but you where afraid to do ?
  • Ask yourself if life had no obstacles such as time or money or commitments what is the one thing that you would love to do?
  • Commit to spending time on whatever it is that you would love to do.

If you spent twice a week concentrating on this dream. You would be guaranteed a different outlook to your life within a year or less. We are only truly happy when we spend time on activities and pleasures that make our heart sing. As my last post 5 regrets to avoid told us it is too late in the last stages of our lives to discover we regret having spent so much time on activities that we never enjoyed. Happiness is a choice it is up to you to decide if you want it.

“Life should be fun. Happiness should flow freely”

Wake up! to You!

Advertisements

Lessons for living- 5 Regrets to avoid.

30 Aug

As I was discussing in the past few articles the gems of Knowledge we learn from people who have lived their lives and have come to a realization that certain things in life matter more than others. I was taken with the words of the people who had taken part in Dr Karl Pillimers legacy project  on the thoughts of our elder friends and the wonderful conclusions that they had in life.

One Comment that recurred time and time again was the importance of “Saying it Now“. The only time you can share your deepest feelings is while people are still alive. Yet how often have so many of us failed to do this with Friends or especially parents or loved ones. This reminded me of a talk an article I did about a palliative care Nurse.

This Nurses name was Bronnie Ware and she cared for patients in the last 6 or so weeks of their lives. During this time with people who were confronting their own mortality and reflecting on their lives. She noticed that there were 5 regrets that kept recurring with all her patients. These regrets are interesting, when you think that these people have reached the final stages of their lives and are reflecting on what they would change.
* I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself not a life others wished of me.

When people’s lives are over it is easy to see how many dreams have gone unfulfilled. How often have we followed our parents footsteps into a world we have no interest in only to find our passion and zest for life being crushed as we try to please others. Find what you love to do and spend as much of your life doing it as is possible. Make it your Job!!. We are only happy when we spend time doing what we love to do. If you don’t want to be an accountant then don’t be. I am not trying to offend accountants but merely providing an example.

Most people have not honoured half their dreams and have died knowing it was down to the choices they had or had not made.

* I wish I had the courage to express my feelings.

Many of us suppress our feelings in order to keep peace with others. As Irish people we are good at this. We are in a restaurant and are unhappy with our meal. We tell everyone  at the table how unhappy we are. But don’t tell the people who served us the food because we don’t want to ruin the night or cause a fuss. We walk away from that restaurant kicking ourselves for not having the courage to say what we felt was right.

We are also not a great nation for expressing our feelings when we see wrong. Our economic collapse has been created by other forces yet we end up paying for it. We are not good at taking to the streets or expressing how we feel to the right people.

“If you think you are too small to be effective you have never been in bed with a mosquito” said Gandhi. If only more of us took that on board. as a result we are happy to settle for a mediocre existence.

* I wish I didn’t work so hard.

Every single male patient said this!!. They all said that they wished they had spent more time with the people they cared about most doing the things they loved. Life is not, Birth, School,Work ,Death. It’s much bigger than that.

* I wished I had stayed in touch with my friends.

Everyone misses their friends when they are dying. It is so easy to let relationships slip. Remember this! We choose our friends, that is the power and beauty behind friendships.

But as the final weeks of our lives stare us in the eye it is not money or success that matters but love and our friendships.

* I wished I had let myself be happier.

Life is full of events. We get stung by bees, relationships end, we crash cars, we lose jobs.That’s just life! it is how we interpret these events that make the difference. We can see it as another knock in what you expected to be a perfect life or you can see it as a chance to grow from your experience.

Many do not realise that happiness is a choice. Fear of change only strengthens that unhappiness.

What an interesting insight from the people who are most qualified to understand what it is like to stand on the precipice with one foot stepping into the unknown and the other leaving behind the past they created.

Lessons for living-Worry wastes your life

22 Aug

Think about this how often have we spent time worrying about some event in the future not turning out how we expected. The answer is probably a lot. We worry when travelling to foreign countries, that an unsuspecting ice cube in our drink or a salad leaf will cause mild dysentery, and we end up in a hospital surrounded by people who can’t speak our language shaking their heads as they analyze your chart. We might even get bitten by some insect we have never seen before and produce a boil the size of Belgium on some inconvenient part of our body. Or end up in the hotel from hell with brown water in the shower and ants living happily under your bed or in your mattress. That is if we make it past the Ryanair desk without emptying the contents of our wallet for forgetting to spell your name correctly on your luggage tags.

These are all incidents that might happen but most likely won’t. Yet we spend an inordinate amount of our time contemplating situations or events that will never happen. All that time sent worrying has done nothing productive bar produce(depending on the worry involved) the stress hormone cortisol into our system which provides us with glucose that helps us when we were hunter gatherers in fight or flight mode  to stay and defend ourselves or run like the clappers if in trouble but unnecessary if you are panicking about the possibility of your holiday being turned into a Channel 4 Dispatches documentary.

Put it this way. I once worked as a plant supervisor for a large food manufacturing company. Our plants were in production from Monday through Friday. Saturday was for cleaning and maintenance. The plant was closed on Sunday and production started up once again at 8am on Monday morning.  Monday morning was sometimes a difficult day. People were just getting back into work mode others were wishing they were still at home and sometimes the  machines might need a few tweaks to get them running as efficiently as they did on Friday. Gremlins seemed to creep in on Sunday.

During that period of my life every Sunday after Breakfast a sense of dread would fill me as I contemplated everything that could go wrong on Monday morning. Consequently every Sunday was a day ruined with worry about what might happen on Monday. Was every Monday a bad day in work with machines breaking down or staff not turning up…No it wasn’t on the contrary we had a lot of very productive fun filled Mondays, but was every single Sunday ruined thinking of what might happen on Monday… the answer is Yes. All those Sundays ruined by contemplating the worst …and the worst never happened.

As humans we do this all the time as Dr Karl Pillimer points out in his study the legacy project ” Yes bad things happen,but you will find the resources in yourself to handle them. Why poison the present moment with continual pointless worry. Worrying is like praying for what you don’t want in life and on a subconscious level that is not good…stop praying for what you don’t want in life.

Some of the elders who participated in the programme had wonderful insights to impart. Remember these are people who had lived large parts of their life and come to the realization that worrying is pointless

Manuel 72: ” You have to be flexible; don’t get locked into one frame of mind over anything, the most important thing is 95% of all things worried about never happen”.

We live in a world filled with advertisements that tell us how we should feel and remedies to sort it out. We are bombarded with the need to secure our homes in the case of fire,burglary,floods. Health insurance works on the premise that someday soon illness is on the way to you don’t be left out on a limb when it happens.Have you insured against losing your job… that’s on the way. Have you got Mortgage protection… Travel insurance for that weekend in Paris… Did you get your pet insured!! because here is the sad news that some day like all living creatures your dog/cat will die. Be prepared!!! It is no wonder we are in a constant state of worry.

Frank 88: ” Don’t give into every ache and pain be thankful for every day that you have on earth and enjoy your family. You can’t change anything by thinking about it. Worrying and concerning yourself is not going to change it one little bit”

Worry does us no good. It is like teaching a pig to sing. It wastes your time and it annoys the pig. Stop worrying…give it up… and just let your life happen.

%d bloggers like this: