To love and be loved

At the end of the day we all just want to be loved. We do. I think you are crazy if you do not agree with me. Wanting to feel loved is the cantankerous colleague that never seems to be happy and wants to stir the pot without realizing it. They just want to be heard. Being heard is a form of love. It is the family member or friend that calls attention to themselves (maybe without realizing it) because deep down they just want attention. They want to feel loved.

Often we do not know how to verbalize the love that we want in our life. We assume that others will know how to love us in the way we want to be loved. And yet, is that even possible? If we do not tell others how we most feel loved, how will they ever know? We have to find a way to tell them (that is if we care to feel their love – we might not think it is worth the effort). Recently I came across this Marianne Williamson quote:

“The meaning of life is to love and be loved. To be the light that casts out all darkness. To replace fear with love and remove the suffering of the world.”

The first line is all that matters. To love and be loved – is the meaning of life. It is so true. When we get into an argument with our spouse or friend and we are angry, often it is because we felt ignored, not heard, and thus not loved. If we feel left out of an adventure with friends we may feel unloved by them. The list goes on, but it always circles back to being loved.

If we all focused more on how we best receive love and share that with others, we might just find that we feel loved. If we focused more on how those we love most feel loved and we respond in that way, they just might feel more loved. When you look at it like that it feels simple. Right?

…If you smell something, say something…

While not an avid, nightly, Daily Show with Jon Stewart watcher, I enjoyed watching him from time to time. I barely have the time to watch the few shows we do DVR, so adding a nightly show to the mix is not in the cards for us. In any case, the man is an inspiration and is hilarious. I am sad to know his show is over. In all the pleas from his fans to not end his show, I came across this quote:

“The best defense against bullshit is vigilance. So if you smell something, say something.” – Jon Stewart

Ah, well put, Jon. Well put. I love it. I am a fan of saying something — always. I am that person that 99% of the time is going to call you out on your bullshit. Why live life without being honest, transparent, and authentic? That does not mean it is always easy for me. Most of the time if I do not say something it eats away at me. While I am not yet a parent, I know all the times I have been told by my own parents, or in childcare situations, that if you let kids get away with something and you let time pass then the teaching moment is over. In most cases I agree. However, what matters most is that you say something.

Be it your spouse, your friend, a family member we so often let things sit inside and agonize over them. We get frustrated, we get angry, and often if we were just open and honest with the other person it resolves itself. They might respond by telling you how grateful they are for your transparency, they might be angry (and really that is their thing to work out), or they might even laugh at you thinking how absurd that such a thing bothered you. Whatever the result, it is good to get it off our chests and not let it fester inside.

Thank you, Jon, for your wisdom and for making us laugh for the past 16 years.

I need more love today

I remember back in the days of cassette tapes, my mom would often play stories of healing for us. Sometimes she played them when we were sick, and other times when we could not fall asleep at night. I cannot remember 95% of the stories, but I do know that after you listened to them over and over again, you almost had them memorized. One of the ones that continues to come to me to this day was the quote: “Go to give a good time, not get a good time.”

I was reminded of this quote last night while spending a little time catching up on Facebook, where I saw this quote posted on Marianne Williamson’s timeline:

Where ego asks “What am I not getting?” in a relationship, Spirit asks “What am I not giving?”

It made me think about how often we get upset, angry, frustrated when we do not get what we want, or things do not turn out as we expected. At times in my life when I have been more aware and taken the focus off myself and really focused on “giving” to the situation, I have found I am calmer, cooler, and more collected. Sometimes though, life throws us curveballs and we are not prepared for how fast they come at us. We may feel injustice that someone is not treating us right, or we feel left out and not included in a project, whatever the reason deep down the feeling that irks us is that we do not feel loved.

I can remember many times where I have gotten upset with Chris and as we discussed it later, the reason I might have reacted was because the situation (example: he did not follow through with something) makes me feel unheard. When I don’t feel heard, I don’t feel loved. At the end of it all, the matter up for discussion is mostly irrelevant. What matters most is how we feel. We act out, react, and get angry because we want to or even need to feel loved.

So my question is: why is it so hard for us to say to another – I need more love today – can you give that to me?

Do Nothing When…

You know when you take a vacation day and you decide to go ahead and check your email, and then regret it for the rest of the day? You agonize over the annoying email you received. You get frustrated. You cannot stop thinking about it.

I found this amazing article last week called: “5 Ways to Do Nothing and Become More Productive” that I keep going back to as a reminder. Why is it so good? It is a reminder to do nothing. I know that may sound lazy, or maybe zen like. Actually what I took away from the article was not about productivity, and more about taking a stand for yourself, which may lead to do doing nothing. I might have titled it: “5 Ways to Do Nothing and Be Your Best You.” I am not going to go over all the points in the article, just the few:

Doing nothing when you’re angry.” It is always best to take a walk and let some steam off instead of reacting and responding when you are pissed off. Taking that breather makes you a better person, but not really more productive.

Do nothing when you’re anxious.” This is an interesting one. The author shares an example of someone telling you they need to talk to you about something, and oh yes it is Friday at 5 pm so you have to wait. I do not really think that your frustration to them telling you on your way out the door is anxiety, it just feels wrong. Not that I am perfect, but it does mean the other person could potentially think about it all weekend and wonder how the conversation will go. I would change this one to read: ‘Do nothing when you’re left in the dark.’ Just wait until you have all the information, then get angry, frustrated, or maybe it is good news. If so, then get happy.

“Do nothing when you want to be liked.” This one is a big one. We all do it. We do it for our spouses, family, friends, coworkers, bosses. What if we did what we wanted, or we did the right thing, but not because we will let our mom, friend, or boss down, or make them happy? What if we truly did not care what others thought, we listened to our gut, and responded in that way?

I loved the premise of the article, and I am inspired. This week I will be thinking about doing nothing when I am angry (well taking a breather), doing nothing when I am left in the dark, and letting go of being liked. Take a moment to read the article and see when you will do nothing…