The Paradoxical commandments

The Original Version:

The Paradoxical Commandments

by Dr. Kent M. Keith

People are illogical, unreasonable, and self-centered.
Love them anyway.
If you do good, people will accuse you of selfish ulterior motives.
Do good anyway.
If you are successful, you win false friends and true enemies.
Succeed anyway.
The good you do today will be forgotten tomorrow.
Do good anyway.
Honesty and frankness make you vulnerable.
Be honest and frank anyway.
The biggest men and women with the biggest ideas can be shot down by the smallest men and women with the smallest minds.
Think big anyway.
People favor underdogs but follow only top dogs.
Fight for a few underdogs anyway.
What you spend years building may be destroyed overnight.
Build anyway.
People really need help but may attack you if you do help them.
Help people anyway.
Give the world the best you have and you’ll get kicked in the teeth.
Give the world the best you have anyway.

© 1968, 2001 Kent M. Keith

“The Paradoxical Commandments” were written by Kent M. Keith in 1968 as part of a booklet for student leaders.

Life lessons

Life Lesson.

Sometimes people come into your life and you know right away that
they were meant to be there…to serve some sort of purpose, teach
you a lesson or help figure out who you are or who you want to
become.

You never know who these people may be but, when you lock eyes with
them, you know that every moment they will affect your life in some
profound way.

And sometimes things happen to you at the time that may seem
horrible, painful and unfair but, upon reflection, you realize that
without overcoming those obstacles you would have never realized
your potential, strength, will power or heart.

Everything happens for a reason. Nothing happens by chance or by
means of good luck. Illness, Injury, love, lost moments of true
greatness and sheer stupidity all occur to test the limits of your
soul.

Without these small tests, life would be like a smoothly paved,
straight, flat road to nowhere. Safe and comfortable but dull and
utterly pointless.

The people you meet affect your life. The successes and downfalls
that you experience can create who you are, and the bad experiences
can be learned from. In fact, they are probably the most poignant
and important ones.

If someone hurts you, betrays you or breaks your heart, forgive them
because they have helped you learn about trust and the importance of
being cautious to whom you open your heart to. If someone loves you,
love them back, unconditionally, not only because they love you, but
because they are teaching you to love and open your heart and eyes
to little things.

Make every day count. Appreciate every moment and take from it
everything that you possibly can, for you may never be able to
experience it again.

Talk to people you have never talked to before, and actually listen.
Let yourself fall in love, break free and set your sights high.

Hold your head up because you have every right to. Tell yourself you
are a great individual and believe in yourself, for if you don’t
believe in yourself, no one else will believe in you.

Forgiveness

Forgiveness

To forgive a person in any circumstances costs us nothing. Say that they have defrauded me, injured my reputation, attempted my life; and suppose such an enemy is in my power, what does it cost me to forgive them? Let us see: To reduce them to poverty would make me no richer; to destroy their peace would not restore my own; to hurt them would not heal me; or to cast a blot on their reputation would restore no luster to my name; to take their life would not insure me against the stroke of death; nor lengthen my life by a single hour.
It is a happy memory that remembers kindness and forgets offenses. It is far more noble to conquer one’s passion than to crush a foe; and sweeter than gratified revenge are their feelings who, when their enemy hungers, feed them; when they thirst, give them water. In so do, people exhibit somewhat of the nature, and taste something of the happiness of God.
From; Stepping Stones to Recovery.

To keep a lamp burning we have to keep putting oil in it.
Mother Teresa

Achieving happiness

Achieving happiness

1. Give people more than they expect and do it cheerfully.
2. Memorise your favourite poem.
3. Don’t believe all you hear, don’t spend all you have, or don’t sleep all you want.
4. When you say, “I love you”, mean it.
5. When you say, “I’m sorry”, look the person in the eye.
6. Be engaged at least six months before you get married.
7. Believe in love at first sight.
8. Never laugh at anyone’s dreams.
9. Love deeply and passionately. You might get hurt but it’s the only way to live life completely.
10. In disagreements, fight fairly. No name calling.
11. Don’t judge people by their relatives
12. Talk slowly, but think quick.
13. When someone asks you a question you don’t want to answer, smile and ask, “Why do you want to know?”.
14. Remember that great love and great achievements involve great risk.
15. Call your mom.
16. Say “God bless you” when you hear someone sneeze.
17. When you lose, don’t lose the lesson.
18. Remember the three R’s: Respect for self; Respect for others; Responsibility for all your actions.
19. Don’t let a little dispute injure a great friendship.
20. When you realise you’ve made a mistake, take immediate steps to correct it.
21. Smile when picking up the phone. The caller will hear it in your voice.
22. Marry a spouse you love to talk to. As you get older, his or her conversational skills will be as important as any other.
23. Spend some time alone.
24. Open your arms to change, but don’t let go of your values.
25. Remember that silence is sometimes the best answer.
26. Read more books and watch less TV.
27. Live a good, honourable life. Then when you get older and think back, you’ll get to enjoy it a second time.
28. Trust in God but lock your car.
29. A loving atmosphere in your home is so important. Do all you can to create a tranquil harmonious home.
30. In disagreements with loved ones, deal with a current situation. Don’t bring up the past.
31. Read between the lines.
32. Share your knowledge. It’s a way to achieve immortality.
33. Be gentle with the earth.
34. Pray. There’s immeasurable power in it.
35. Never interrupt when you are being flattered.
36. Mind your own business.
37. Be wary of a person who doesn’t close his or her eyes when you kiss them.
38. Once a year, go some place you’ve never been before.
39. If you make a lot of money, put it to use helping others while you are living. That is wealth’s greatest satisfaction.
40. Remember that not getting what you want is sometimes a stroke of luck.
41. Learn the rules, then break some.
42. Remember that the best relationship is one where your love for each other is greater than your need for each other.
43. Judge your success by what you had to give up in order to get it.
44. Remember that your character is your destiny.
45. Approach love and cooking with reckless abandon.

Author unknown

© John Mark Ministries. Articles may be reproduced in any medium, without applying for permission
(provided they are unedited, and retain the original author/copyright information – and perhaps a reference to this website :-)!

http://jmm.aaa.net.au/articles/3259.htm

The 4 R’s

R R R R

Rest – This is one of the hardest things for me to do, as evidenced by this post at 11:00 PM on a work night. I find that I don’t need a ton of sleep every single night, but 4 out of 7 nights, I really need my 7-8 hours of sleep to feel completely refreshed and recharged. Your mileage may vary, but 7-8 hours should be enough. One thing that I find really hurts me is oversleeping to try to catch up. These 10 hour power snoozes don’t help, and in fact they end up making me more tired than before. I’ve found that focusing on the 7-8 hours is enough for me. You’ll find your sweet spot, and once you do, do everything you can to stay in it!

Reflect – I find that taking the time to reflect on what’s happening in my life every few days helps me keep things in perspective and stops negative thoughts before they get out of control. Contrary to what some think, my life is not perfect, I have bad days too. I just try to make time to think about why they’re bad days, and try to make sure I keep those things out of my life as much as I can. Of course some days are easier than others, but taking the time to reflect will at least help understand how you’re feeling, and hopefully why you’re feeling that way. It takes practice, to be sure, and it’s worth it!

Read – I read as much as I can, some for pleasure, mostly for self-improvement. I couple this with some reflection time, and I find that this is some of the best part of my day. You don’t have to read a novel to get away; find a blog you enjoy, an online newsletter that pumps you up, or just an old e-mail from a friend. Think about the words and really immerse yourself in whatever you’re reading. It will help you de-stress and re-charge!

Relax – We all relax differently, some by reading, some by reflecting, some by resting, and some by doing something altogether different. Whatever you find is your most relaxing thing, or is your most relaxing place, make time to do this or get there at least once a week, and you’ll notice a difference in your energy level.

Phil Gerbyshak leads a team of IT help desk professionals in Milwaukee, WI, and finds that sharing his knowledge is a crucial component in his success as a leader and as a person. Phil’s personal philosophy is paraphrased from Tim Sanders’ fantastic book Love is the Killer App: “Share your knowledge, your network, and your love. The rest will follow.” Read more of Phil’s ideas at http://makeitgreat.org

Be careful

BE CAREFUL

Be careful of your thoughts
for your thoughts become your word.
Be careful of your words
for your words become your actions.
Be careful of your actions
for your actions become your habits.
Be careful of your habits
for your habits become your character.
Be careful of your character
for your character becomes your destiny.

-Unknown

Symptoms of inner peace

SYMPTOMS OF INNER PEACE
Author Unknown

* A tendency to think and act spontaneously rather than on fears based
on past experiences.

* An unmistakable ability to enjoy each moment.

* A loss of interest in judging other people.

* A loss of interest in judging self.

* A loss of interest in interpreting the actions of others.

* A loss of interest in conflict.

* A loss of ability to worry (this is a very serious symptom).

* Frequent overwhelming episodes of appreciation.

* Contented feelings of connectedness with others and nature.

* Frequent attacks of smiling.

* An increasing tendency to let things happen rather than make them
happen.

* An increased susceptibility to the love extended by others as well
as the uncontrollable urge to extend it.

Claiming our feelings (Passive aggressive behaviour)

Claiming our Feelings
Passive Aggressive Behavior

by Madisyn Taylor

The way to end passive aggressive behavior on your part or others’ is with complete honesty and truth in any situation.

If you’ve ever found yourself repressing your anger and behaving in other ways to get your point across, you may be someone who is adept at engaging in passive-aggressive behavior. Although passive-aggressive behavior is recognized as a psychological disorder, it also describes the behavior that many people use to cope with confrontational situations. Such behavior has the outward appearance of being peaceful, yet it is really an attempt to express oneself in seemingly passive ways—usually without accepting responsibility for doing so. For example, someone who doesn’t want to attend an event with a partner might engage in behavior that causes them to be late or miss the event without ever admitting to their partner that they never wanted to go to the function at all. Procrastination, inefficiency, stubbornness, and sullenness are some of the many ways that anger can be expressed indirectly.

It is important not to judge ourselves when we engage in passive-aggressive behavior. You may want to consider that you are not owning your feelings or your expression by indirectly expressing yourself. Perhaps you are judging your feelings and needs as wrong—which is why you are expressing yourself indirectly. You also may be worried that others will judge you for feeling the way that you do. Remember that anger and every other emotion are never good or bad. They can, however, become toxic of you don’t express them in healthy and proactive ways. When we express ourselves directly, we are more likely to be heard by the other person. It also becomes easier for us to ask for and get what we want.

Once we learn to be honest with ourselves about our feelings, we can begin to directly express ourselves to others. By learning to express ourselves directly, we prevent misunderstandings, hurt feelings, and resentment from cropping up in our relationships. We also learn to communicate with others in healthy and productive ways. It is never too late to start working on ourselves and our behaviors, just take it one day at a time.

7 Steps for Overcoming Ego’s Hold on You by Saikumar Sela

Here are seven suggestions to help you transcend ingrained ideas of self-importance. All of these are designed to help prevent you from falsely identifying with the self-important ego.

1. Stop being offended.

The behavior of others isn’t a reason to be immobilized. That which offends you only weakens you. If you’re looking for occasions to be offended, you’ll find them at every turn. This is your ego at work convincing you that the world shouldn’t be the way it is. But you can become an appreciator of life and match up with the universal Spirit of Creation. You can’t reach the power of intention by being offended. By all means, act to eradicate the horrors of the world, which emanate from massive ego identification, but stay in peace. As A Course in Miracles reminds us: Peace is of God, you who are part of God are not at home except in his peace. Being is of God, you who are part of God are not at home except in his peace. Being offended creates the same destructive energy that offended you in the first place and leads to attack, counterattack, and war.

2. Let go of your need to win.

Ego loves to divide us up into winners and losers. The pursuit of winning is a surefire means to avoid conscious contact with intention. Why? Because ultimately, winning is impossible all of the time. Someone out there will be faster, luckier, younger, stronger, and smarter-and back you’ll go to feeling worthless and insignificant.

You’re not your winnings or your victories. You may enjoy competing, and have fun in a world where winning is everything, but you don’t have to be there in your thoughts. There are no losers in a world where we all share the same energy source. All you can say on a given day is that you performed at a certain level in comparison to the levels of others on that day. But today is another day, with other competitors and new circumstances to consider. You’re still the infinite presence in a body that’s another day (or decade) older. Let go of needing to win by not agreeing that the opposite of winning is losing. That’s ego’s fear. If your body isn’t performing in a winning fashion on this day, it simply doesn’t matter when you aren’t identifying exclusively with your ego. Be the observer, noticing and enjoying it all without needing to win a trophy. Be at peace, and match up with the energy of intention. And ironically, although you’ll hardly notice it, more of those victories will show up in your life as you pursue them less.

3. Let go of your need to be right.

Ego is the source of a lot of conflict and dissension because it pushes you in the direction of making other people wrong. When you’re hostile, you’ve disconnected from the power of intention. The creative Spirit is kind, loving, and receptive; and free of anger, resentment, or bitterness. Letting go of your need to be right in your discussions and relationships is like saying to ego, I’m not a slave to you. I want to embrace kindness, and I reject your need to be right. In fact, I’m going to offer this person a chance to feel better by saying that she’s right, and thank her for pointing me in the direction of truth.

When you let go of the need to be right, you’re able to strengthen your connection to the power of intention. But keep in mind that ego is a determined combatant. I’ve seen people end otherwise beautiful relationships by sticking to their need to be right. I urge you to let go of this ego-driven need to be right by stopping yourself in the middle of an argument and asking yourself, Do I want to be right or be happy? When you choose the happy, loving, spiritual mood, your connection to intention is strengthened. These moments ultimately expand your new connection to the power of intention. The universal Source will begin to collaborate with you in creating the life you were intended to live.

4. Let go of your need to be superior.

True nobility isn’t about being better than someone else. It’s about being better than you used to be. Stay focused on your growth, with a constant awareness that no one on this planet is any better than anyone else. We all emanate from the same creative life force. We all have a mission to realize our intended essence; all that we need to fulfill our destiny is available to us. None of this is possible when you see yourself as superior to others. It’s an old saw, but nonetheless true: we are all equal in the eyes of God. Let go of your need to feel superior by seeing the unfolding of God in everyone. Don’t assess others on the basis of their appearance, achievements, possessions, and other indices of ego. When you project feelings of superiority that’s what you get back, leading to resentments and ultimately hostile feelings. These feelings become the vehicle that takes you farther away from intention. A Course in Miracles addresses this need to be special and superior: Special ness always makes comparisons. It is established by a lack seen in another, and maintained by searching for, and keeping clear in sight, all lacks it can perceive.

5. Let go of your need to have more.

The mantra of ego is more. It’s never satisfied. No matter how much you achieve or acquire, your ego will insist that it isn’t enough. You’ll find yourself in a perpetual state of striving, and eliminate the possibility of ever arriving. Yet in reality you’ve already arrived, and how you choose to use this present moment of your life is your choice. Ironically, when you stop needing more, more of what you desire seems to arrive in your life. Since you’re detached from the need for it, you find it easier to pass it along to others, because you realize how little you need in order to be satisfied and at peace.

The universal Source is content with itself, constantly expanding and creating new life, never trying to hold on to its creations for its own selfish means. It creates and lets go. As you let go of ego’s need to have more, you unify with that Source. You create, attract to yourself, and let it go, never demanding that more come your way. As an appreciator of all that shows up, you learn the powerful lesson St.Francis of Assisi taught:”…it is in giving that we receive.” By allowing abundance to flow to and through you, you match up with your Source and guarantee that this energy will continue to flow.

6. Let go of identifying yourself on the basis of your achievements.

This may be a difficult concept if you think you are your achievements. God writes all the music, God sings all the songs, God builds all the buildings, God is the source of all your achievements. I can hear your ego loudly protesting. Nevertheless, stay tuned to this idea. All emanates from Source! You and that Source are one! You’re not this body and its accomplishments. You are the observer. Notice it all; and be grateful for the abilities you’ve accumulated. But give all the credit to the power of intention, which brought you into existence and which you’re a materialized part of. The less you need to take credit for your achievements and the more connected you stay to the seven faces of intention, the more you’re free to achieve, and the more will show up for you. It’s when you attach yourself to those achievements and believe that you alone are doing all of those things that you leave the peace and the gratitude of your Source.

7. Let go of your reputation.

Your reputation is not located in you. It resides in the minds of others. Therefore, you have no control over it at all. If you speak to 30 people, you will have 30 reputations. Connecting to intention means listening to your heart and conducting yourself based on what your inner voice tells you is your purpose here. If you’re overly concerned with how you’re going to be perceived by everyone, then you’ve disconnected yourself from intention and allowed the opinions of others to guide you. This is your ego at work. It’s an illusion that stands between you and the power of intention. There’s nothing you can’t do, unless you disconnect from the power source and become convinced that your purpose is to prove to others how masterful and superior you are and spend your energy attempting to win a giant reputation among other egos. Do what you do because your inner voice always connected to and grateful to your Source-so directs you. Stay on purpose, detach from outcome, and take responsibility for what does reside in you: your character. Leave your reputation for others to debate; it has nothing to do with you. Or as a book title says: What You Think of Me Is None of My Business!

https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/7-steps-overcoming-egos-hold-you-saikumar-sela-

How to be miserable

If your aim is to be miserable most of the time, the following ten actions will help you reach that state of misery in record time:
1. Think only about yourself. Talk much about yourself. Include “I” as much as you can in every conversation.
2. Pay close attention to what people think and say about you.
3. Expect to be appreciated.
4. Cultivate suspicion, jealousy and envy.
5. Be sensitive to every sight insult. Never forgive a criticism.
6. Trust nobody but yourself.
7. Insist upon special consideration
8. Demand that everyone agree with your views and opinions on everything.
9. Shirk your duties and responsibilities if you can.
10. Do as little as possible for other people.