I am not in this world to live up to other people’s expectations, nor do
I feel that the world must live up to mine. —Fritz Perls
Expectations can stop the flow of living and stop you from enjoying your children. Although expectations can raise the proverbial bar, to allow your child to reach a little harder in life, it often raises it too high or never lets it come back down. This spells disaster for relationships and breeds the germs of resentment and anger.
Our expectations often come from what we believe others are doing that we “should” too. But why should we? Where is it written that we must have the same income and John and Jane Smith next door? Who says that it is essential that our home always be clean and our children always respectful? What will happen if we/they are not?
How has your parenting expectations helped or hindered your ideas of being a family? What if this family isn’t what you expected, what now? Is there an acceptable Plan B, C or perhaps D? How might you address these expectations to live more realistically and follow your own course in life vs. following others?
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The editors of Writer’s Digest have prepared 365 Writing Prompts—idea joggers and brain starters—to get your writing going. This page and the WritersDigest.com home page present you a new prompt each day. Enjoy, and may these exercises spur you on to even better writing.
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Simplicity of living is not a new idea. It has deep roots in history and finds expression in all of the world’s wisdom traditions. More than two thousand years ago, in the same historical period that Christians were saying “Give me neither poverty nor wealth,” (Proverbs 30:8), the Taoists were asserting “He who knows he has enough is rich” (Lao Tzu), Plato and Aristotle were proclaiming the importance of the “golden mean” of a path through life with neither excess nor deficit, and the Buddhists were encouraging a “middle way” between poverty and mindless accumulation. Clearly, the simple life is not a new social invention. What is new are the radically changing ecological, social, and psycho-spiritual circumstances of the modern world.
How can you live more simply? What extremes are you living for that require movement to the “middle way?” How does poverty control your mind? In what ways does wealth mislead you?
“There are no problems – only opportunities to be creative.”
“As the season of believing seems to wind down let me gently remind you that many dreams still wait in the wings. Many authentic sparks must be fanned before passion performs her perfect work in you. Throw another log on the fire.”
Sarah Ban Breathnach
“I am always doing that which I can not do, in order that I may learn how to do it.”
“To exist is to change, to change is to mature, to mature is to go on creating oneself endlessly.”
“Some men throw their gifts away on a life of mediocrity, great men throw everything they have into their gifts and achieve a life of success.”
“To live a creative life, we must lose our fear of being wrong.”
Joseph Chilton Pierce
“Creativity is inventing, experimenting, growing, taking risks, breaking rules, making mistakes, and having fun.”
Mary Lou Cook
“There are two ways of being creative. One can sing and dance. Or one can create an environment in which singers and dancers flourish.”
Warren G. Bennis
“I’m always thinking about creating. My future starts when I wake up every morning. Every day I find something creative to do with my life.”
ANGER SMART #37: “Anger – The Inner Terrorist”
Anger Thought: Daniel Goleman, in his book “Emotional IQ,” states that anger hijacks the brain, making it impossible to think or act rationally. Further research backs up his claim by documenting that angry people are unable to understand the point of view of others making the power of empathy impossible. When our inner emotional terrorists take over the skill of empathy, business and personal life will suffer. The best way to combat anger is to manage the level of stress in our lives. Anger pops up as a natural reaction to stress. This is called the “fight or flight” response and is generally beyond our voluntary control. But you can control the amount and type of stress you are subjected to on a daily basis.
Anger Action Plan: Make a list of all the stressors in your life. The longer the list and the more severe the stressor, the more likely you are to be hijacked by anger. Circle one item on your list to eliminate or manage. Each day review your list. Do you need to add any new stressor that have come up or take any off that you have successfully overcome? Keep working on the one you circle until you can cross it off. Then pick another and repeat the “war on the terror” of anger in your life.
Anger Toolbox: Need a little help managing your anger and stress? Take our online ecourse for no charge by sending a mailto:email@example.com or click the “Stop Anger” link at the top of the page.
“When you lose, don’t lose the lesson.”
No one likes losing or experiencing the stages of grief and loss but lose can teach us some valuable lessons. About ourselves, our relationships, our goals. What has loss taught you? How has it made you a stronger person? A better parent? A more productive worker? A more creative artist?