Keeping it Simple

Over the past few months, the concepts of stripping back the superfluous, simplifying and pulling apart the true meaning of integrity have been strong personal themes.

For many people, there`s a drive to again inspect old patterns that continue to run happily in the background despite years of self-examination. Perhaps under the direction of a new global energy, there`s a sense of being able to lovingly let go of those things that have served us all well on one level, yet have offered excuses to stay small on another.

I came across Don Miguel Ruiz,The Four Agreements, the other day and it strongly resonated with this desire to pare back; to simplify; to become more real as a participant in this world and begin operating in a more authentic way.

With these 4 simple tenets, we could literally change the way we as humans operate in this world. How do they resonate with you? Please feel free to share your thoughts, we`d love to hear from you.

1. Be Impeccable with your Word: Speak with integrity.

Say only what you mean. Avoid using the Word to speak against yourself or to gossip about others. Use the power of your Word in the direction of truth and love.

2. Don`t Take Anything Personally: Nothing others do is because of you.

What others say and do is a projection of their own reality, their own dream. When you are immune to the opinions and actions of others, you won`t be the victim of needless suffering.

3. Don`t Make Assumptions:

Find the courage to ask questions and to express what you really want. Communicate with others as clearly as you can to avoid misunderstandings, sadness and drama. With just this one agreement, you can completely transform your life.

4. Always Do Your Best:

Your best is going to change from moment to moment; it will be different when you are healthy as opposed to sick. Under any circumstance, simply do your best, and you will avoid self-judgment, self-abuse, and regret. ~ Don Miguel Ruiz

Take It Easy and Enjoy Life

Can you remember your childhood days? During those times, nothing yet seemed complicated – all we had to think about were crayons, cookies, or Santa Claus. We didn’t care about the things we didn’t know because we were just too oblivious of the things that might bother us.

But as we grow older, we get anxious with the things that surround us – life and death, loving and parting, success and failure, to name a few. We find that almost everyday, we are obliged to be concerned about people or events.

Nevertheless, always keep this in mind: Don’t take things as if they are responsible for the way you feel. Events or situations do not trouble you. How you look at them does.

If you miss those carefree days, you just have to look back at how you used to view things then, and you will know what to do now. Here’s a guide to make sure you won’t lose your way:

Cherish the simple things: Trust in the power of a smile or laughter, a kiss or a hug. Believe in kindness, honesty, dreams, and imagination. Living positively is the first step to becoming happy.

Loosen up. Laugh at your mistakes. You might remember the time when you were delivering your speech and your mind went completely blank right in the middle of delivering it. It’s embarrassing. But most likely, your audience will forget about it in a day or two. We all mess up occasionally. The good thing is that people tend to forget such situations.

Surround yourself with what you love. Get a pet. Retain film moments as keepsakes. Keep away from those that drag you down. If that high-paying job makes you sulk at the thought of having to go to work, find a job you like first before quitting. If some people force you to comply even if you think of doing otherwise, stay away from their company.

Don’t put off. Go on that trip. Take your Master’s. You’ll never know the extent of your life. Do something, while you can.

Don’t push yourself too hard trying to please everyone. You just can’t. And it never seems to be worth it anyway. When you want to make somebody’s day, start with your loved ones.

Keep fit. Be that attractive person you always picture yourself to be. Cherish your health. It’s the best way of showing you are putting your best face forward.

Do not assume. Don’t fret about forgetting your speech before you actually do it. Don’t worry about not getting the job you want because you might mess up at the interview. It’s good to expect the worst; but don’t end up expecting only the worst.

Alter your way of thinking. When you’re being ridiculed, criticized about your family background, or condemned for past mistakes, put on deaf ears. Don’t believe everything you hear. You know yourself better than everybody else does. Never wallow in self-pity.

Remember: Don’t get upset over things just because it’s how most people would react when faced with the same situation. When you find yourself being negative – angry, down, jealous, etc. – you also unknowingly drain your energy and enthusiasm. You just have to try keeping these negative feelings in the low, because giving in to these emotions would sometimes make you unreasonable, and you might end up making bad decisions.

Happiness is always in your grasp. You can attain it, as long as you know how.

Learn to Solve Your Problems

How much percentage in a class of 30 students would agree to you that Mathematics is a great subject? You might answer “around 10 to 35%” and that is all. True, most kids today are not thrilled to solve Mathematical equations not because they do not know the processes involved, but because of the lack of interest in it.

In a similar way, our daily activities do not mean 100% joy and 0% problems. At times, we have more problems than joy. Fortunately, some individual are skilled in handling problems right. Want to know their secrets?

Well, carefree people, as some might call them, have one thing in common: optimism. These kinds of people do not mean they never had problems before. Try remembering a colleague, a relative, a friend, or someone from your community who has the brightest smile at the start until the end of the day. How many times did you see that person frown? Carefree people are fun to be with because their attitude is contagious. Have you tried asking them how they carry their problems lightly? Below are their secrets:

1. Learn to control your feelings by separating negative feelings from positive thoughts. This is the first step in solving problems. Only after you have cleared your mind with unnecessary thoughts can you start solving your problems accordingly.

2. Treat each problem as challenge and opportunity for self-improvement.

3. Free that scapegoat attitude. Are you pointing your finger or blaming others for mishaps? Take responsibilities for your mistakes. No one is perfect, so never put the blames on others.

4. Use a pen and paper, and rate the depth of the problem and possible answers to your problem. Probability law principle will allow you to evaluate how far you have thought of resolving your problems.

5. Keep a journal and treat it as a “secret friend” who is always willing to listen to your grievances. Write your feelings freely.

6. Develop a noteworthy hobby, for this will help you lessen or minimize stress in your life.

7. Take time off from work and create variations of your daily schedule. Relax and check out the best movies in town. Travel and meet new wonderful people. You will find these activities worthwhile in the long run.

The above tips will help you optimize those positive feelings of yours. Say you are already consumed by some problems. Here are the 1-2-3 steps in doing your problem solving:

1. Determine the root cause of the problem. If you think it is difficult, ask hundreds of why’s and what’s and you will soon find out the cause.

2. Think, strategize, and act for resolution.

3. Develop a strong desire to solve the problem.

4. Review the situation for you to avoid repeating the same mistakes committed beforehand.

Consider that everybody experiences lowliness many times, but problems are problems. They are there not to annoy you; but problems are created when you cannot accept your limitations. Once you accept your limitations, problem solving is just a 1-2-3 step, hassle-free, and a life-sharpening experience indeed. Hence, never consume or lock yourself in your room when problem strikes. Think that problems are states of your being limited to something you need the most. But if you cannot have that important thing, accept it. Let go and you will free yourself with worries. Remember, less worries mean less problems. If you think that you really want some time out because of problems, consider that there is another room available for you called “improvement.”