Monthly Archives: September 2013

Happiness: Taming Expectations

Happiness

Happiness is relative; that’s what a friend commented on one of my posts. I agree with him, happiness is indeed relative. I usually find myself sulking because I didn’t accomplish something. Now thing is, expectations change constantly; people evolve, their thinking evolves, goals change…that’s life. Sometimes we have to rely on others to achieve some things, and speaking from experience, it could be devastating when the person(s) you’re relying on bails.

I have learned that to be truly happy, I need to tame my expectations; not to rely too much on others. If I expect less, I’ll only have slim chances of getting disappointed.

Then there’s the other issue of feeling constantly disappointed because things are not just going the way I expect them to. Most people have all their goals set right from the start. When I was in high school for instance, I had envisioned what my life would be like…but has it turned out exactly as I’d expected (so far)? Not quite.

Normally this would be a good excuse for me to get disappointed, but slowly I’m realizing one thing; if I wait to achieve all my goals so I can be happy, I could end up miserable and chronically depressed. When I was young and seemingly naïve, I thought success was the key to happiness; but now I know it’s the other way round. Happiness is the key to success; because personally, I realized I’m much more productive when I’m happy.

If you ask me, happiness is a state of mind; for one to be truly happy, they just need to will it. They just need to want to be happy even when they feel there’s so much they need to accomplish. I have met some really optimistic people; those who seem happy from Sunday to Sunday. Normally when I get less marks than I had anticipated in an exam, I feel like someone zapped the joy out of me, so that all my thoughts revolve around my temporary failure and I get all stressed up…but then, maybe that has something to do with my high proneness to depression.

When I’m feeling a little bit under the weather, I’ll be all blue, feeling like the sun refused to come out from behind the ‘dark clouds’…then I have this friend who will be all happy even when I feel like whatever she’s going through would be enough to sink a ship. It all comes down to one thing, how much one craves happiness; it is elusive, but if one takes things as they are; trying to see past their sorrows, taking one day at a time, they’ll be less anxious and ultimately happy.

Sometimes when I’m down I’ll be like, “Today I’ll be happy no matter what.” It doesn’t always work, but it strengthens my will to be happy when things aren’t working out fine.

Choosing Vocations: What are you called to do?

choosing vocations

A young man went to see a priest, to seek guidance because he wanted to become a lawyer. The priest asked him, “Why do you want to become a lawyer?”

The young man replied, “Because I want to be rich.”

“And after that?” the priest asked.

“Then I’ll marry a beautiful woman and start my own family.”

“After that?” the priest persisted.

“I’ll enjoy my success.”

“After that?”

“I’ll die,” the man answered.

“And after that?”

“I’ll go to heaven and meet Jesus.”

“And after that?”

The man looked at the priest confused; he had given his entire life/after life plan and he still wanted more. He went back home and reorganized his plans (this short story was told by a priest in church).

When choosing a vocation one should address two principal aspects: How does my vocation help others? And how does it relate to God? (Speaking from a Christian’s perspective).

Whatever one wants to do, they must really be so passionate about it, to an extent where they can’t explain fully why they love it. That profound ardor one has for something that they just feel it’s what they want to do; even if it meant doing it for free.

If after evaluating one’s interest they feel it helps others and still honours God, then maybe it’s the right calling. What everyone should bear in mind is that no one was put on this earth just to occupy space. We were all given a purpose to fulfill…now the million dollar question is, ‘what is that purpose?’

Treading into the darkness

I said to the man who stood at the Gate of the Year, “Give me a light, that I may tread safely into the unknown.”

And He replied, “Go out into the darkness and put your hand into the hand of God. That shall be to you better than a light and safer than a known way!”

So I went forth, and finding the hand of God, tread gladly into the night. And He led me towards the hills, and the breaking of day in the lone East.

So, heart, be still; the stretch of years which wind ahead, so dim to our imperfect vision, are clear to God; our fears are premature. In Him all time hath full provision.

I read this piece on a pamphlet I was handed in church; I don’t know who it’s credited to, but I loved it. It touched my soul. Personally, I have been struggling with anxiety all through my life; since I became aware of my existence. It’s something I deal with every day, and I must say I find it difficult.

Walking with Christ

I know we’re asked to take one day at a time, but sometimes it just happens that I find myself worrying about tomorrow, or how Saturday will be… it just happens. I feel really frustrated when I feel anxious about things, even when I will myself not to.

One thing I learned, is that fear and faith can’t exist together; they’re both dominant, so one has to sought of choose between the two; which one they will feed. From experience, I know when I base my trust in God, I don’t feel so anxious (sometimes I don’t even feel anxious at all) because at the back of my mind I know there’s someone greater than me; greater than all my worries, taking care of it all, but then fear /worrying happens without giving one the chance to choose (that’s why I end up feeling frustrated when I worry because I know I shouldn’t).

Reading the insightful words above, I was reminded why I shouldn’t worry about walking into the unknown; treading into the darkness, because God will lead me there.

Avoiding the inevitable

broken hearts

Sometimes when I’m watching a movie, I see a couple looking so disconnected.  For instance, a guy will close his eyes, savouring the feel of his girlfriend’s luscious lips against his, whereas on the other hand the girl will be rolling her eyes impatiently, wondering when the guy will release her. In another scene, there will be a girl telling a guy how much she loves him, but the guy will only shrug, unable to reciprocate because deep down he knows he’s only toying with the girl and will flee the instant another charming lady shows up.

During such moments I wonder, doesn’t he/she feel his/her guy’s reluctance? But then I remember; I’ve been in similar situations; feeling the guy slipping from me, but I hold on obstinately because I’m afraid of admitting what is right in front of me; that the halcyon days are long gone. That the lurking pain is inevitable; that it’s over.

One feels the pain creeping in slowly, but because s/he dreads it, she puts up with him; settles for whatever little pieces of him she can get, even when she feels it’s not enough; just because she’s afraid to let go.

From the relationships I’ve been in, I realized, when the daily good morning, good afternoon and goodnight texts reduce to a single text per day or none at all; when texts go unanswered for hours, when initially a minute wouldn’t go by without reading the reply (when it would come in right after, you would wonder if they had texted it in advance) this are signs of the end.

When he doesn’t say ‘I love you’ with so much enthusiasm like he used to before, you even feel like you’re forcing it out of him, it is time to let go because the looming pain is inevitable.

It’s better to let go and deal with the pain than hold on to a lifeless relationship, which will sink you into unfathomable pain and frustration.

Humility

Humility

“My son, perform your tasks in meekness, then you will be loved more than a giver of gifts. The greater you are, the more you must humble yourself. So you will find favour with God. There are many who are noble and renowned, but it’s only to the humble that He reveals His mysteries. For great is the might of the Lord; he is glorified by the humble. The affliction of the proud has no healing, for a plant of wickedness has taken root in them, though it will not be perceived. The mind of the wise man will ponder the words of the wise, and an attentive ear is the wise man’s desire.” (Sirach 3:17-20, 28-29).

This bible verses emphasize on the need to be humble. Jesus is the widely acclaimed King of Kings, yet He mingled with thieves, wasn’t afraid to interact with people who had been shunned by their communities, e.g. those suffering from Leprosy as it was a highly contagious disease… I wouldn’t be able to exploit the endless list of things He did, which most people wouldn’t do if they wielded so much power.

In today’s setting, power and fame are associated with cruelty, greed, misuse of power…all the vices one can think of. As Christians, we are called to look up to The Man of Sorrows. He washed His disciples’ feet, when they should have been washing His. He did that to set an example; that the master should treat his subjects with humility; that he should serve them.

Sometimes in life, we find ourselves in situations we wouldn’t want to be in, but those are some of the moments life gives us to be able to reflect on the essence of humanity. When we fail to learn from them, we sink even deeper into the abyss. It is said, that when one finds themselves on their knees-when life feels impossible; when it knocks them down- one is in the best position to pray.

Humility is a virtue which should be practiced by everyone, irrespective of the title one holds. I often wonder, why is it that people who lead/led saintly lives like Mother Teresa, are people from humble backgrounds? Does it mean that it’s impossible for one to be powerful/rich and still practice humility?

I realized people have grown accustomed to seeing leaders/celebrities act with so much derision, so that when one of them does something noble it’s regarded with suspicion. Is it seriously that hard for one to wield so much power and still treat others like fellow human beings? Without discrimination or scorn? Jesus had the power to give life; He is the life, but that never made Him arrogant.

Christ teaches us to serve those under us; to serve others, without expecting anything in return, because then we earn God’s favour, which is greater than anything on earth.

In Matthew 5: 5, when Jesus was giving the sermon on the mountain, where He gave the beatitudes, He said, “Happy are those who are humble; they will receive what God has promised.” This just shows how much God Values humility.

LIEBSTER NOMINATION

Liebster Award

I HAVE BEEN LUCKY TO BE NOMINATED FOR A LIEBSTER AWARD BY MYLIFEANDREAHALL.

Take a moment and visit her awesome blog: http://searching4solace.wordpress.com

The Liebster Award Rules: 

  1. You must link back the person who nominated you.
  2. You must answer the 10 Liebster questions given to you by the nominee before you.
  3. You must pick 10 bloggers to be nominated for the award with under 200 followers
  4. You must come up with 10 questions for your nominees to answer.
  5. You must go to their blogs and notify your nominees.

MY ANSWERS TO MYLIFEANDREAHALL QUESTIONS:

1. What inspired you to start a blog? I feel I have been through some pretty intense stuff, some of which have changed the person I am; how I see things, so I wanted to share my experiences, hoping someone who’s gone through something similar would be inspired to make the right choices-better choices.

2. What is your earliest childhood memory? When I was about two years old: As kids, my big sister and I were finicky eaters, so our nanny used to tell us there was this guy who came for kids who didn’t eat and would go chop their heads off. So one day when my big sister and I were upstairs in the bedroom looking out through the window, we thought we saw a man carrying a carton with heads in it outside our gate. We freaked out and hid under the bed; then I fell asleep. My big sister stayed beside me the entire time but she was too scared to leave. Our nanny found us hours later.

3. Where is your favorite vacation destination? Paris.

4. Who is the person in your life who has inspired you the most? My mom.

5. Do you have pets? If so, how many and what kind? Two Goldfish.

6. What time do you usually go to bed? 4 a.m.

7. What is the first item on your “bucket” list? Putting a smile on someone’s face.

8. What is the most adventurous thing you have ever done? Camping.

9. If you had three wishes, what would they be? I would wish everyone knew and loved God. I would wish for global peace, and I would wish to be always happy, no matter the situation with the understanding that everything that happens, happens because God allowed it.

10. Are you afraid of death? What I’m actually afraid of is what happens after death (I’m a Christian). That is what inspires me to strive to be a better person each day because I know at the end I will stand before judgement. I realized what matters is not how long one lives but what one does with the time they’re alive.

HERE ARE THE BLOGS THAT I AM NOMINATING:

I have picked some bloggers who’s blogs I’ve enjoyed reading. Please do visit their blogs and say hello.

http://ilikethesmellofnewthings.wordpress.com

http://whm66.wordpress.com

http://sweetmarie9619.wordpress.com

http://discoveringisland.wordpress.com

http://themostlyconfusedteenager.wordpress.com

http://indishabille.wordpress.com

http://angiekw01.wordpress.com

http://kalipr.wordpress.com

http://naomijjohnson.wordpress.com

http://andasprinkleoflove.com

 

MY 10 QUESTIONS FOR MY NOMINEES

1)      How has your childhood affected you?

2)      If you went back in time, is there one particular thing you would do differently?

3)      Is there any particular experience that has made a significant impact on your life?

4)      If there was one thing you could do to make the world a better place, what would it be?

5)      What are the three most important things in your life?

6)      What characteristic do you admire most in a person?

7)      Is there anything you feel people don’t know about you that you wished they knew?

8)      What’s your favourite pastime?

9)      If you had a chance to dine with three famous people, dead or alive, who would they be and what would you say to them?

10)  Do you have a favourite quote? If so, what does it state?

 

HAPPY BLOGGING. 🙂

 

HE LIFTS US UP: Love… should not hurt! (1 Cor.13:4-8 NIV)

I’m always trying to define/understand true love and this description couldn’t be better put.

ChristianBlessings

love is patient
LOVE… It should not hurt!
Many things have been written about “LOVE”. We all dream of the day that our “true love” will come and we will live “happily-ever –after”. We all watch various “love stories” with dreams for our wonderful futures with the love of our lives. But what is love?

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