Thursday, October 15, 2009

Be careful what you sow!

In this blog inspired by the “For Better or For Worse” comic Strip by Lynn Johnston the wife had, against her husbands advice, gone out of her way to play matchmaker between her best friend and her own visiting brother. Now after they are late coming back from their date, the wife is in a right royal tizz.
And the following agitated discourse to her husband is spread across the three panels: “ My brother is somewhere with my best friend…. So where ARE they?” Next comes: “I bet he’s swept her off her feet… I bet he’s taking advantage of her vulnerability!" Finally, turning to her husband, she says plaintively: “How could he do this to me!!”
Again I know that this is just a comic strip cartoon, but many people are like that in real life too.
They interfere, no matter how good-intentionally in some things that it would just be best not too, and let nature take its course. However they and often we do interfere, only to have it go all pear shaped on us, and then try and lay the blame on the other participants and not where it largely lays: With us.
So today, if you are in a similar situation, except what blame is due you, make amends where you can and don’t do it again. Likewise if you are not yet in such a situation but tempted to intervene, think again and make sure that your intended intervention is in fact the right decision to make or whether you should just step back and let the natural course run its natural course, without your well-intentioned but often unhelpful and possibly hurtful intervention. True sometimes it is to the best if we do intervene, but not always, so always carefully assess the options and go with the one which will be both most helpful and least hurtful to the person you are trying/supposedly helping!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Are You Too Enthusiastic At Times?

This older “For Better or For Worse” comic Strip by Lynn Johnston, has the young son encouraging his younger sister to walk unassisted and is gently and quietly encouraging her and when she succeeds, He screams out at the Top of his voice, “MUM! LIZZIE’S WALKING!”
At the sound of this “noise” Lizzie gets frightened and falls over and won’t try again, much to the dismay of all concerned when mum duly arrives.
Do you and I also see that happening sometimes when we are trying to help people or things along? Everything starts of fine, but instead of going slowly and even withdrawing quietly from the scene when success starts to come, we try and make a big fuss of things and push them along faster than either nature or they are comfortable with, and hence the whole thing often collapses in a heap like this child did on the floor when distracted by the noise of her brother’s enthusiasm.
Again, is there currently some situation now, where you have been helping out quietly and that you now want to shout about, when in fact, you should just withdraw quietly and leave them to go about their business, unhindered by your enthusiasm, thus allowing them to build up their own confidence and ultimately, their own enthusiasm? Again what say you?

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

My unique style?

Went swimming back in Oz back in July, after over a month away. The little bit of Snorkelling I did while away in the South Pacific islands, must have helped my breathing, if not my speed, as that day I swam so much more easier as far as my breathing was concerned. So much so that I was able to swim 800 metres (16 Laps) without having to rest between laps or even touch the end of the pool. And I only stopped then because my swimming partner decided to stop after his 20 laps. (So I am still slower than him despite my ease in breathing.)
Anyway, as I was turning around in the shallow end without stopping after two laps, I saw someone else getting ready to swim. I did not originally recognise him, but he obviously did me, as he said, “I thought I recognised that unique Style.”
Later when I had finished, I told my swimming partner and the Pool attendant about this friendly dig at me, and they both remarked, “What style?”
So you can see by this, that my length of swimming may have improved but my style and speed hasn’t, and probably never will. But that doesn’t bother me too much as I can still swim further than a lot of other people can.
So today’s lesson is: “Don’t worry if your “style “ is not good enough for anyone else!” As long as it gets you where you want to go safely and comfortably, then be happy with it.
Either that or lash out and take swimming lessons! (Which I don’t intend to do anytime soon!)

Monday, October 12, 2009

How Disarming Are You Really?

In this comic strip by Brian Anderson called, “ Dog Eat Doug”, there is a little baby crawling along the floor near a dog, when the dog goes, “BOO-YAAAA!” At which point the baby jumps into the air and out of sight. To which the Dog replies quietly, “ That was not quite the hip, disarming greeting I thought it would be.”
Very funny when it happens to someone else, but what about us? Are we as careful with what we say to other people? And is what we say, really as Hip and disarming as we claim or think. And even when it sometimes can be, doesn’t mean t is always appropriate either. After all, often there is a time and place where a certain thing will be appropriate, other times where it will be tolerated, and yet other times where it will be totally inappropriate. So today when you try to be hip and disarming, do think before you both speak and act.
For what is hip and disarming to you might be frightening and offensive to others: As the producers of Hey, Hey Its Saturday found out recently! What say you?

Saturday, October 10, 2009

What fits your busy Schedule Best?

In this single panel comic from Randy Glasbergen ( Copyrighted in 20003, he has a man who has just had his Medical Physical and apparently not happy with the Doctor’s pronouncement.
So the Doctor replies to Him, “What fits your busy schedule better, exercising one hour a day or being dead 24 hours a day?”
Isn’t life like that sometimes? So often we are not happy with what we are told we should be doing, but then find that the alternative is a lot, lot worse.
So today, what do you need to change in your life to get the most out of your life and to extend your life too? It may be you have to add exercise to your life or to simply cut out other habits, such as over eating or eating the wrong types of food, or it may be something totally different. I don’t know, but is there something that you have to do, either to include or exclude now that will help you live a long and healthy life, whereas the alternatives is being a long time dead?
Over to you for reflection and your thoughts now.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Any Unnecessary Pianos In Your Life?

In the Comic strip, “The Doozies: by Tom Gammill on 6/10/2009, it has a salesman at a man’s door trying to sell him a piano. To which the man replies, “No one in the Family plays.” To which the salesman replies, “Doesn’t matter – It makes a great table for Picture frames.” And the last panel shows a piano in the driveway complete with half a dozen Framed pictures on it.
And under the comic were these three comics from previous readers. One said, “How did the guy get the piano to that place”. Another said, “If the pictures were included I might make an offer”. And the final; said,” It’s a shame no one plays the piany no more.”
Again this is just a reminder that different people can see the same thing but come to completely different conclusions depending on their own personal interests and likes.
However what I wanted to focus on here today was how many things do we have in our homes or lives that are not being properly used for their intended and proper uses? And what should we do about them? Just keep them to prop Pictures on? Learn to properly and fully use them to their proper end? Pass them on to someone else who can. Or just get rid of them and replace them with something more appropriate to your needs?
Again I cannot make any decisions for you. All I can do is to encourage you to look at your life and see if you have any “Pianos” there just propping up pictures, and whether you need to pass them on to someone who can make proper use of them or just get rid of them altogether and replace them with something more practical and more suitable to your needs. So will you do that today? Will you look at what is unnecessarily cluttering up your life and how you can best dispose of it? And then do something about it!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Are you really that desperate?

This “For Better or For Worse” comic Strip from 7/2/09, by Lynn Johnston has the wife’s best friend busy at the computer tapping away. Then we read her thought bubbles, which say: “Lonely divorcee, age 35, one child, seeks companionship…”
“No! Make that: Sincere single woman with child seeks relationship with…”
“AAGH! It’s no use!! I’ll probably attract some crazy NUTCASE!” Now had she stopped there, it would have been fine, but the final panel ends with her continuing to tap away at the computer saying: “Then again… A weird relationship might be better than nothing!”
Now you will know from my previous blog, Are you this type of Friend? “ that her friend talks her out of posting this letter, but have you ever felt like this? So desperate for something that you will be tempted and strongly tempted to do what you know is the wrong thing, but are still prepared to do so, because of your perceived desperation?
If so, stop for a while and really think about what you do have. Sometimes in cases like this, one focuses on what they don’t have, forgetting all that they do have, and often things that others would just love to have.
Now I know that this is just a cartoon character, but as yesterday’s blog pointed out, she really wasn’t that badly off. She had a great kid, a great job, a home of her own and stability. She had all these good things but had forgotten them in her obsession for something else.
Again this is only a comic strip, but what about you in real life? Have you also become obsessed with what you don’t have and forgotten all the Good things you do have? The good things that many others would just love to have!
So today, don’t focus on what you don’t have but focus on and appreciate that which you do have.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Are you this type of Friend?

In this “For Better or For Worse” comic Strip from 10/2/09 by Lynn Johnston, the wife is reading a letter handed to her by her best friend and responds, “Don’t tell me you were actually going to put an ad in the personal column!”
“Connie, this is just too much! Your need for someone has become an obsession!”
“You’re got a great kid, a great job, and I think you’ve been acting like an idiot”.
Wow! How do you think you would react if your best friend spoke like that to you? Well, let’s see how the comic strip ends, shall we? There in the last panel it has Connie reply with her hand on her friends shoulder saying:” Thanks El… I knew I could count on you to say the right thing.”
What El said to her friend was tough but true, and sometimes we just have take a deep breath and speak up when we see people about to do something stupid and seeking our council.
I am not saying here that we should become busybodies with an opinion on every subject, but at times and especially when it is brought to our attention, we may need to risk our friendships and maybe even our reputations by being called busybodies, to say what is right, and what is needed. Needed to be said and needed to be heard! What say you?

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Think after you speak too!

In response to my blog “Think before You Speak,” I received the following response from my American friend in South Africa: ”I'm not sure that once you have made a decision you have to stick with it. I think it is often a sign of pride. I can think of instances where people in authority stubbornly held to decisions even when faced with the facts that showed that the decision was ridiculous. Why not simply admit that in light of the new information you have decided to make a change?”
Actually, I couldn't agree more with my friends comment. However that is dealing with the problem after the event. My blog was an attempt to get us all to think more carefully before making each and any decision. If that were done more often, there would be fewer occasions where we would need to correct ourselves. Which, as my friend implies, does occur more often now, than we would like.
So, as the topic is now on the table, is there some area in your life right now where you not only need to, but should re-evaluate your initial decision, even to the point of humbling yourself and saying, that in light of new information, you have decided to make a change?”
Again I thank my friend for his input on the topic. And if you have something you would also like to comment on or even correct, please feel free to do so.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Think before You Speak.

This “For Better Or For Worse” Cartoon Strip by Lynn Johnson from July 13, has the mother “out gardening when her Boy comes up and asks, “Can I play in the Sprinkler, MOM.” To which she replies, “No!” He then replies, “But it’s hot out and I’m not sick or anything! “To which his mother replies sternly, “ I said NO!” To which he replies, “ That’s not fair! There’s’ no reason why I can’t play in the sprinkler!’ Then in the final frame we see the mother's thought bubble: “I know …but once you’ve said no … you've got to save face.”
Now I don’t actually agree that she has to save face, but I do agree that once you have made a decision, you do have to stick with that, no matter how uncomfortably it makes you. Unless it is either immoral or illegal.
However getting back to the above illustration I think that there are two clear and distinct lessons to be learned from it. One for each party.
Firstly, the Boy put up a good argument at the end, but sadly He left all his pertinent points until after the answer was no.
So from this we should learn to marshal all pertinent and relevant facts before hand, and present them upfront, and not wait until after the decision has been made.
And secondly we learn form the mother not to be too hasty in rejecting a request, just because it’s timing is inopportune or its presentation is initially lacking in content.
So please think before you speak! Whether it is to ask for something, or whether it is too respond to any such requests, or for any other matter too!
Now of course if one of my children were to ask me that today, I would also say no! Not just because they are adults and would look funny running in and out of a sprinkler! But because we have severe water restrictions and can only run a hose for 2 hours, twice a week! Even now in our Winter/spring!