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Category Archives: self-help

The Art of Connection

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I paid a visit to my daughter who now lives in Philadelphia.  For those who read this blog on a regular basis, you know that Koko and Jean Claude have moved on.  Crazy Cat Lady (CCL)  is now fostering two cats,  Sonny and Cher.  Apparently, the cats reflect the reported later stage of their namesakes’ relationship in that the cats are in conflict at times.  Still, within an hour of my visit Cher, a chubby, striped Tabby and Sonny, a frisky black Bombay, were all over me.  Cher, measured and reserved, settled for just laying across my chest, while Sonny wanted, demanded constant play.

Humans are like that in that we require varying degrees of attention and connection.  We also require validation.  something cats as a species don’t seem to need.  I have found there is an art to the ability to connect and understand.  I wonder if it can be taught but I know that it’s important to find points of commonality when dealing with humans and with cats.

Sonny

 

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Choose Peace As A Destination

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Today, the Sunday after Thanksgiving is supposed to be the busiest travel day of the year in the U.S.    People are leaving their Thanksgiving celebration destinations after time spent with family, friends and significant others.   We are traveling by car, airplane, bus, train, RV and by foot and by bicycle.   Despite, traffic jams,  canceled flights, standing-room-only trains, one thing is certain, we are, most of us,  sure of our destinations.  We will get where we are going at least in the physical sense.  Home.  For some, however, the journey never ends, There are folks who never arrive mentally and spiritually anywhere.   They are constantly in motion.  They are always going, doing, emailing, using Social Media,  directing, worrying, moving, gossipping.      Stopping or even slowing down is not part of their inner journey.   Peace for them is a foreign destination. Their road to inner harmony is roadblocked or delayed by their need for constant excitement.  Often, they offer you a ride or a free ticket to join them in their insanity.  Don’t get on that plane!  Don’t join folks on the journey to nowhere.  Wherever you travel, you can choose peace as your destination.

When It Comes to Predicting Behavior How Can We Really Know?

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We all are sensitive to stereotypes.  When it comes to our pets we rely on on a certain level of predictability.   Dogs act this way.   Cats act that way.   The truth is there really are no rules.  We can’t predict how animals will behave in certain situations.  A recent YouTube video is an example.

 

 

 

 

 

Validating Circumstances

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There is discussion these days about the impact that our friends and our lifestyle decisions have on our personal and professional development.  New research shows we tend to develop traits of those with whom we spend the most time.  Experts say our “Top Five” play a role in our decisions.  As the  adage goes: ” We are the company we keep.” Often, we don’t have a choice.  Our families, for instance.  Sometimes we find ourselves alone,  or with friends who don’t have our interest at heart but wield influence.  Sometimes we may simply be on a crowded bus or airplane for a sustained period.   Worse,  many of us daily must be part of less-than healthy work environments that offer no opportunity for growth, personally or professionally.

 

We are not at the mercy of others. We are valuable.   Our thoughts are powerful.  Daily, we have the opportunity to make choices that validate us.    We can dismiss situations in which our personhood is not valued if not physically, then at least mentally.   No is not a four-letter word.   We can detach from people who consistently invalidate us by constant criticism,  lateness, manipulation or misuse of our time.  The same for clients or employers who don’t  treat us well or compensate us appropriately.     When no one else is in the room, or when emotional terrorists seek to destroy us, we are still armed.  We have God. We have ourselves.