To me, being friends and being single on Valentine’s Day isn’t a bad thing. I find out more about people through friendly exchanges or friendships than I ever would otherwise.
Knowing people takes time. We have quirks. We have stress. We are anxious, busy, tired, and sometimes downright depressed. That’s a lot to spring on a person in a relationship after the “honeymoon” is over, which is usually when people start to sense they aren’t with who they thought they were. This ends up becoming a pseudo-happiness not founded in friendship and love.
But with friendship, everybody gets to check each other out, see what matches up and what doesn’t, before hearts get broken. It’s slower, but it’s way kinder than the way most social expectations work and the ways they make us interact with each other, many times unethically.
And if you do your friendships right, you’ll always gain a friend into your life, even if not romantic. And after awhile, that holds so much more weight in a heart than flighty escapades with people you don’t know that well and they don’t know you that well. Those kinds of interactions that make for feeling empty inside because no one knows you at all. We all have to risk a little to be friends!
So this Valentine’s Day, and like many in my past, I make it my own and I make it about Friendship. Capitalism will make you feel like shit for being single, and for some it makes them feel like shit for being in a relationship, but it’s a lie. You’re an amazing person. Get out there and make another person feel amazing just by saying Hi with a big fat smile and recognizing them. Find one person to uplift and encourage today and you’ll know the essence of Love and Friendship (giving through your pain – giving to others what you wish you had) which is a great segue into what kind of romantic relationship you want anyway right?
And if you’re in a relationship, keep the love alive through Friendship!
I just logged into my Facebook and found a post from one of my friends. He’s frustrated with all the crazy news stories in the media about the problems in our world.
He wants to know where all the good stories are from those of us that care and are doing something to make this world a better place.
I couldn’t agree more. And neither could his Facebook followers!
What a great blog post, I thought. And so here it is.
What am I doing to make the world a better place?
Today, I worked on my mental state of mind through researching self-esteem and self-confidence. I listened to hypnotherapy to help my mind and actions get in-tune with each other.
I want to eat better. I want to behave better. I want to consistently push myself more and more in everything I do. I want to give to humanity and the environment in sustainable ways, even if that just means doing my best in my own little world.
I’ve researched for many years now the effects my diet has on my health, my state of mind, the power of my soul, my finances, and basically my life. But the even better part that I learned is that the better I behave, the less I spend, the less I consume, and the less I pollute. This is a daily task.
My life, inadvertently becomes an example to others. This never really meant much to me until I experienced it with my teenager.
I realized I can talk her all day if I want, but what I do is what she subconsciously picks up on. If I want to know how well I am parenting, all I have to do is see her reactions to me and the life I’m trying to offer her.
I see more changes in her when I just behave the way I want her to behave.
What does this have to do with the state of the world and the environment?
There is a beauty in action and body language. In truth, we are all like my teenager. We watch what everyone else is doing, subconsciously picking it up, and then behave like-wise for acceptance, love and worthiness in the eyes of others.
And this would be great, if the state of our world wasn’t in such place that it is now. We have to reverse these problems through compassionate actions. We have to consciously change our behavior and match it up to what we want to see happen, not go around telling others what needs to happen.
We have to do it.
It takes courage to live this sort of life. We have so many excuses as to why it is easier not to change, or to wait around for the next person to stand up and do it. However, this is not a meaningful life. A meaningful life is changing ourselves first, to match up with our visions of world peace.
This friend of mine on Facebook left a quote from Mother Teresa under his first post:
We ourselves feel that what we are doing is just a drop in the ocean. But the ocean would be less because of that missing drop.
Its true. We feel that the little things we are contributing aren’t enough, but Mother Teresa knew that all the small actions amount to a lot more when we consistently engage in those actions daily. Its putting a penny in the spiritual bank.
One of us alone can’t make the world peaceful nor heal the environment, but all of us taking small steps together create an ocean of action. Everything you do, day in and day out, contributes to this ocean we all live in. Are you creating a life of peace and compassion? Are you consciously improving your behavior in empowering ways?
It’s a tough road, but we are all in this together
I support whatever efforts you are putting forth, even if some days you feel like you’re taking two steps backwards. It feels like that often to me too. This is all the more reason we should work together on supporting each other.
But I’ve learned with my daughter that it is possible even when it seems dark and hopeless like the news makes us feel. Today, I talked to her about her own self-esteem. I told her that it would affect every part of her life and how very important it is. I had her sit down and watch a YouTube video about self-esteem. I told her what I wanted for her life. I want her to have good relationships with her friends, and to pursue her passions, and to take responsibility for her actions.
The best part about it is, even though she’d rather be off texting her friends and listening to music, my messages to her always come back to me later. She will tell me how she helped her friends by giving them good advice. When she repeats the advice, I hear my message come back to me from her perspective. I smile to myself when I hear these things because when I said it to her, I thought I had no effect on her.
Last week, she told me one of her school friends wanted to commit suicide. She talked to him and helped him out with these thoughts. He came by our home later to thank her. After he left, she told me that if it hadn’t been for her, he would’ve committed suicide. This is not the first friend she helped.
Is my parenting working? Some would look at our life from the outside and beg to differ. But I know I am teaching my daughter very valuable lessons about life, connections, and how to behave in a crazy world. I know the power of small steps and small conversations, what others would equate to as “not enough” for what is going on in this world.
But I agree with Mother Teresa. The power of who we are, how we behave, and what our actions stand for are far more reaching than we could ever imagine.
One drop at a time
I know in my heart we are all doing things like this to help each other. We just lose these moments in the busyness of our day. We forget what power we are giving to each other and what words are helping others. Some of us lack self-esteem and it makes it hard to internalize that we are the difference!
Now its your turn. Tell me something you’ve done today, or that somebody did for you, to make the world a better place. I know you are putting more good into this world than you probably give yourself credit for. I’d really like to hear about you. I’d also like you to share this blog with others that you know are not giving themselves enough credit for the good they put into this world.
Let’s bring our focus together on this subject by sharing our stories of how we’re helping each other just a little at a time. Just one drop in the ocean at a time. We never know who are encouraging.
Before you go to sleep tonight, look in the mirror while you’re brushing your teeth and remind yourself who you are. Tell yourself you are the difference. When you are positive with yourself, you will eventually become naturally positive with others.
Updated Feb. 23rd, 2013: Here is another article from Zoe Weil on this subject on her blog Humane Connection.