Years ago my parents brought our family from our island home to the United States in hopes of living a more fulfilling life, and growing up I saw many examples of life with possibilities. So when I hear someone describe themselves or their possessions and add the word JUSTas an adjective, it makes me wonder about limitations. Here are a few examples: “I’m just the cook.” “I’m just a cashier, but I want to be a manager.” “I’m just trying to get by on one check.” “Oh, that’s just our house even though it needs work.” Using the word just in these instances is like applying the brakes on a moving vehicle and no one ever gets very far if they’re constantly on the brakes. If we take off the limitations then we’ll move along life at a more accelerated pace.
“What do you do for a living?” “Well, I’m a cook and I’m studying to become a chef.”
“Do you enjoy working at the store?” ” I do, I’m a cashier, for now, but I’m taking management classes and someday I’ll be a manager.”
“Oh, it must be difficult financially since your wife got sick and can’t work?” “I’m happy she’s on her way to recovery but I’m glad that I’m healthy enough to bring in an income for the both of us.”
“Boy, you probably don’t have a moment’s peace with all the people in your house, huh? “We are grateful to have a place of our own that we can call home.”
Try not to JUST be this or that, BE. Once you change your words you change your world.
We’re in such a hurry these days and sometimes life has to stand in our way for us to change our pace. Take for instance, a long time friend comes to mind that you haven’t spoken with in a while and you think to yourself, ” I should call _____,” but you don’t. Weeks go by and the same friend comes back to your mind again and you still don’t call. You get a phone call from that friend not too long after, they tell you they had gone through a rough patch and just got a chance to lift their head above water. If you had called them first would it have made a difference? Possibly. Another example is your commute to and from home, you know the route backwards and forwards with ease. Sometimes you reach your front door and it’s a blur how you got there. That ever happen to you? Then you wonder how the time goes by so quickly.
We move through life on a ship of convenience with the wind of familiarity guiding our sail as we chase what’s next. Getting caught up in the plans for tomorrow and the dreams from yesterday we don’t pay much attention to the now. Simple changes can help us to live for now. Wake up slowly. Try enjoying your first breath you recognize in the morning. Let music flow in and out of you. Smile back at the sunshine, even through the raindrops. Absorb your day, because you’re living.
We don’t have forever, but we have for now, try not to let anything get in the way of it.
If the circumstances allow, the best time to do something progressive is the moment you think about it. Someone ever cross your mind that you haven’t been in contact with for a while and you say to yourself, “I need to call her/him”. Time passes and the phone call is never made. Or perhaps you intend to throw a load of clothes in the washing machine and the phone rings, you stop and take the call and dirty clothes lay there, unattended. From the simple to the complex we are full of good intentions, but nothing will ever happen until we take action. We need to be determined in getting things done and be realistic in the time we can complete it. It’s like sitting down to a Thanksgiving feast, just because all that food is in front of you, doesn’t mean you have to eat it in one sitting. Take small bites and then put some away for later (some of the best meals are from leftovers). It’s the same concept; do what you can with the time you have available. Don’t delay, take action.
When it’s time to move on and leave behind the familiar, it can become unsettling. In front of you is the unknown and an exciting new path waiting for you to take your first steps. Behind you are the routines you’ve developed; the neighborhoods that you could breeze through with your eyes closed and the places you’ve enjoyed visiting over time. Then there’s you, right in the middle of it all. There’s nothing wrong with holding on to memories and keeping a few mementos, but in order to reach out and grab a hold of what’s in front of you, you have to let go of what’s behind you. What can help you, to let go, is focusing on where you’re headed, because letting go is a gradual process that takes courage and determination. Don’t worry…you’ll get to your next stop sooner than you think!
Money is like a silent business partner, around when you need it, but rarely ever seen and our relationship with money is something that develops over time. Through our upbringing or adult experiences we have an affection or distaste for how we handle money. When you work and get paid, you either get your money in the form of a check or through direct deposit to your financial institution. Besides your basic living expenses, where do you put your money? Does your money sit in an investment/savings vehicle untouched with the hopes of strong growth or do you look around your home to see your money reflected in a recent purchase. The more money you have the more secure you can feel. And knowing this, if we’re able to keep more of the money we earn and make more conscious choices on what to do with our money, then we’ll treat money more like a key…. and with that key it can unlock many doors.