How to Lower Your Blood Pressure in 4 Weeks Without Prescription Drugs

Review for Janet Bond Brill's Latest Book "Blood Pressure Down"

Blood Pressure Down: The 10 Step Plan to Lower Your Blood Pressure in 4 Weeks without Prescription Drugs When I was offered an opportunity to review Blood Pressure Down: The 10-Step Plan to Lower Your Blood Pressure in 4 Weeks–Without Prescription Drugs on Self Help Daily, I jumped at the chance. I was already familiar with the author, Janet Bond Brill, PH.D., R.D., L.D.N., and had even previously written a review of another of her books: Prevent a Second Heart Attack (click the link for the review).  Truth be told, after reading Prevent a Second Heart Attack, I was already looking forward to the author’s next book!

Like most people, I’m completely and utterly drawn to the idea of handling as many health problems (and potential health issues) as “naturally” as possible. Obviously this isn’t always possible – after all, many medications are life savers.  I like the thought of a patient proactively working with their doctor – doing their part to bring about healing and better health.

From the Back Cover

For the 75 million Americans with hypertension, a safe, effective lifestyle plan—incorporating the DASH diet principles and much more—for lowering blood pressure naturally.

If you have high blood pressure, you’re not alone: nearly a third of adult Americans have been diagnosed with hypertension, and another quarter are well on their way. Yet a whopping 56 percent of diagnosed patients do not have it under control. The good news? Hypertension is easily treatable (and preventable), and you can take action today to bring your blood pressure down in just four weeks—without the potential dangers and side effects of prescription medications.

     In Blood Pressure Down, Janet Bond Brill distills what she’s learned over decades of helping her patients lower their blood pressure into a ten-step lifestyle plan that’s manageable for anyone. You’ll:

   • harness the power of blood pressure power foods like bananas, spinach, and yogurt
   • start a simple regimen of exercise and stress reduction
   • stay on track with checklists, meal plans, and more than fifty simple recipes

Easy, effective, safe—and delicious—Blood Pressure Down is the encouraging resource that empowers you, or your loved ones, to lower your blood pressure and live a longer, heart-healthy life.

75 million Americans, alone, have high blood pressure – the number just blows my mind.  One of my daughters recently commented (kind of matter-of-fact) that just about everyone she works with has high blood pressure. The disease is almost as rampant as it is dangerous. Needless to say, if you have high blood pressure, please make sure that you’re under a doctor’s care.  Read Blood Pressure Down: The 10-Step Plan to Lower Your Blood Pressure in 4 Weeks–Without Prescription Drugs, taking notes throughout the book, then take the book and your notes to your doctor.  Tell him/her that you want to treat your blood pressure as naturally as possible!

Below are just a few of the things I love most about this wonderful book and just a few of the reasons I’d love to see everyone add this book to their library as soon as possible.

  1. I’m not the least bit “medically inclined.” My knowledge of medicines and diseases couldn’t even fill a notebook.  Let’s not let this get out, but I”m not entirely certain I could fill 2 notebook pages! Yet, Janet Bond Brill makes everything beautifully clear.  When I read her books, I always find myself wishing she’d taught my biology classes. She puts everything “within reach” of her readers, which is wonderful of her considering this is life and death information.
  2. This book presents a DOABLE action plan. You’re given 10 clear steps that you can begin implementing the very day you open the book.  In reverence to the authors and publishers I work with, I never want to “give away” too much information. For one thing, it’s simply not fair to them!  For another thing, however, it’s not fair to my readers because I’d never want you to miss out on a wonderfully important book because you think you’ve “gotten” all the information you need.  This is why I don’t want to lay out the ten steps for you here, however, I will tell you one because it makes me smile (as in ear to ear): Eat Dark Chocolate.   Each “Step” has an entire chapter devoted to it.  Eat Dark Chocolate has 16 pages, itself, detailing how dark chocolate has strong beautiful roots as an ancient medicine.  You learn how and why dark chocolate is so healthy and then you’re given the magic words: Eat 2 Tablespoons of Natural, Unsweetened Cocoa Powder or One or Two Squares of Dark Chocolate Every Day.  Yes, Ma’am!
  3. Exercise – as in what qualifies and what doesn’t – is covered in great, clear detail.
  4. You learn the effects sleep and relaxation have on blood pressure.
  5. Recipes! There are quite a few delicious and healthy recipes included.  Sometimes it’s hard to know which foods are healthiest – after reading Blood Pressure Down: The 10-Step Plan to Lower Your Blood Pressure in 4 Weeks–Without Prescription Drugs, you won’t have any more excuses. You’ll know for certain which foods you should throw on the table and which foods you should throw in the trash.
  6. You’re also given tips for slashing salt at home as well as in restaurants.  Salt is very problematic for hypertension, but getting rid of it’s a lot easier than you’d think.  You’ll also see where salt is showing up in foods you never would have expected.
  7. Label Lingo – you’ll learn what to look for on labels at the store. There is a list on pages 88-89 that I’ve written on an index card. I’ve become quite a label reader, so arming myself with healthy information makes good sense.  As the author says, you’ll learn where the salt’s “hiding!”
  8. You’ll learn the importance of magnesium as you’re given 10 easy tips for adding magnesium to your day.
  9. The author takes a very confusing subject (supplements) and lays it all out in plain language.  At the end of the chapter, you know exactly which supplements you should be taking.
  10. Last, but certainly not least (in fact, it’s my favorite thing about the book!): Blood Pressure Down: The 10-Step Plan to Lower Your Blood Pressure in 4 Weeks–Without Prescription Drugs is for ANYONE, whether you have high blood pressure now, have a family history of high blood pressure, love someone who has high blood pressure, or simply want to eat healthy as a preventive step.  I, personally, do not have high blood pressure.  I have, however, read this book cover to cover, memorizing the information as I went along. I feel like I am armed with information that’ll help prevent me from ever being one of the 75 million Americans with hypertension. Equally important, I have information to share with my family to keep them from developing problems with their blood pressure.

This author is all about preventing diseases, not just treating them, and I hope you will follow her advice as well.  I “whole-heartedly” recommend this fantastic, potentially life-saving book.

About the Author: Janet Bond Brill, PH.D., R.D., L.D.N. is a nationally recognized expert in cardiovascular disease prevention and the author of Cholesterol Down and Prevent a Second Heart Attack. She has been a nutritionist in private practice for many years. Visit her website at www.drjanet.com.

 

The Names We Call People are A Lot Like Post It Notes

For Better or Worse.. They Just Might Stick

I can still feel the impact of a musical friend who one day called me ‘musical.’ No one had ever called me that. I didn’t really play an instrument. I was no soloist. Yet . . . I instantly felt known and loved. . . . [He] noticed, validated, and appreciated something deeply true about me.”  These words were written in an article by Mark Labberton and beautifully remind us of the importance of “names” we assign to one another.

Whatever “names” or even “images” we assign to other people carry a lot of weight, and for better or worse, you’d better believe they stick. Power of Names

Long before I considered myself a writer, I thought of words as little pieces of puzzles. The end result of piecing them together might be a letter to a loved one, an essay at school, or a few lines in my diary about the impossibly cute boy who worked at an arcade in town.

Naturally I never thought about my effectiveness with words. I simply knew I loved being in their presence.  I remember when I actually began to feel like, maybe… just maybe… they enjoyed being in my presence as well.

My aunt (one of the sweetest people in the world, by the way) was always one of my favorite family members to write letters to.  She loved to hear about my pets, friends, school, clothes, etc. If I had an interest in something, she wanted to know all about it.  One Christmas (I believe I was around 14-15), she and my uncle came in for Christmas. Right smack in front of the entire family, she launched into how much she loves getting my letters. She said I had a “gift” for writing.   She went on to say that she kept all of my letters.  Then my mom said that she kept all of my poems and short stories that I’d written in school.

I thought, “You KEPT all that crap???”

My aunt told me, “You should be a writer,” and my mom replied, “She already is.”

I have no idea what gifts I unwrapped under the tree that year, but I know that two of the most important people in my life gave me one of the best gifts I’ve ever gotten – belief in myself.

Since that day, whenever I’ve written anything I’ve sat a little taller and felt a lot more confident.  Whenever I’d get anything less than an A+ on an essay, I’d think, “Well, you obviously don’t know what you’re talking about. I’m the writer here.”  Even today if someone tells me they think I should have said this or that in a blog post, I think, “What do you know? I’m a writer. Go away.”

Many years passed between the day my mom and aunt made me feel 10 feet tall.  I became a wife (to the cute arcade boy) and mother of three beautiful daughters.  I threw myself completely into these roles. The only writing I did was letters and curriculum for my daughters, who I home-schooled all the way from Kindergarten to 12th Grade.

When I decided that I’d very much like to be a web publisher and blog writer, I remembered what my family had said all those years ago.  Their words gave me confidence to try.  I’d always see so many great authors online that there were times I’d kind of doubt myself. Right around this time, a friend of my husband’s who happened to have a great reputation online as a web publisher said that he was “in love with my writing.”

This compliment was like a shot in the arm and I felt positively sassy again.

Words carry so much weight! Whether they’re words we say to our children, our spouse, ourselves, or people we barely even know.

Power of NamesThink of words like this: When you call someone “dumb” or even say they did a “dumb” thing – it’s as though you’re writing the word on a post it note and pinning it to their top.  They WILL live down to your expectations.

When you call someone “gifted,” “smart,” “witty,” etc… they WILL live up to your expectations.

Think about things people have called you. No doubt both good and bad names come to mind.  That’s a perfect illustration that these labels stay with us and a wonderful reminder to watch what words come out of your mouth.

Now for a harder exercise – think about the names you have called other people or the titles you’ve given them.  If you’re the sort of person who has pinned far more negative words than positive, make it right. If you think you’ve been particularly harmful to someone’s self confidence or fear that someone doesn’t think you believe in them – don’t let another day go by without clearing things up.

Words have the power to change lives.

“If you wouldn’t write it and sign it, don’t say it.” - Earl Wilson

 

The Storm Will Pass. The Spring Will Come.

Beautiful Quote (and Reminder!) from Robert H. Schuller

First Robin of Spring

Never cut a tree down in the wintertime. Never make a negative decision in a low time. Never make your most important decisions when you are in your worst moods. Wait. Be patient. The storm will pass. The spring will come. – Robert H. Schuller

I thought of this great quote by Robert H. Schuller recently. Like everyone, I was growing a little anxious for spring to arrive. The cold days just seem to linger and linger and linger. To make matters worse, we kept getting little teases of warm weather. I’d put my cardigans and sweaters in the back of the closet, only to have to dig them back out when the temperatures would dive again.

Don’t get me wrong, I love winter. But she just about overstayed her welcome this year!

When I saw the first robin of spring (something we bird lovers always watch for), I thought about this wonderful quote.

The spring will come. It always does.

When we lose loved ones, we can’t even imagine EVER smiling again, let alone laughing. Yet, after a while, we do both. When we’re in the throes of a stomach flu or sinusitis, we can’t even remember what it’s like to feel good.  And, yet, when we DO feel better, we’re convinced that it’s the best we’ve ever felt in our life!

The spring will come. It always does.

If you’re going through a difficult time right now – whether it’s related to health, grief, relationship problems, or one of life’s other monstrosities – keep reminding yourself that it won’t always be like this. Better, brighter, happier days are ahead.  Storms never last forever and, very often, they leave a beautiful rainbow in their wake.

The spring will come. It always does!

How to Naturally Treat Acid Reflux Disease and Symptoms

Foods and Herbs That'll Help You Feel Better FAST!

Red Apples - Treat Acid Reflux Disease Naturally

Anyone who has ever experienced acid reflux knows what misery means.  The pain, the burning, the FOUL taste left in your mouth… there just isn’t anything remotely good about it. While there are medications available, most of us would like to be on as few medicines as possible.  Having said that, of course, if your condition is especially bad, you’d be nuts NOT to see a doctor for a prescription.  You don’t look nuts to me, so I know you’ll see a doctor if you need to.

Fortunately, there are actually quite a few things we can do to treat acid reflux symptoms on our own.  By just making a few changes to our diet and, if needed, adding a few simple things to our diet, we can spend more time sleeping soundly and less time sitting up in the middle of the bed cursing every bite we took the previous day.  Been there, hated that.

Natural Remedies for Acid Reflux:

The following is a dream team for those experiencing digestive problems.  Experts suggest trying different ones to see which work for you. Just be sure to stick with them long enough to see if they’re doing you any good or not.

  1. Aloe Vera Juice.  This juice (with a taste that requires a little getting used to) is a MUST HAVE for anyone with digestion-related issues.  While drinking a little Aloe Vera Juice can quickly alleviate nausea, indigestion, and heart burn, it’s also a great idea to drink some each day – before you actually have pain or feel queasy.  You should take up to 4 oz daily, preferably before eating.  We’ve kept Aloe Vera Juice in the refrigerator for as long as I can remember. It aids digestion and is a God-send for upset stomachs.
  2. Herbal Licorice.  I have never, personally, tried Herbal Licorice but it sounds pretty amazing.  A story on Treating Acid Reflux Symptoms (Fox News) reported that Herbal Licorice is believed to be effective in treating stomach and intestinal ulcers, reducing stomach acid levels, coating the stomach wall with a protective gel and relieving constipation.  Look in the Vitamins/Minerals/Herbs section of your favorite store.  Licorice Herbal Tea is available on Amazon (I’m throwing some into my cart asap!).
  3. Apple Cider Vinegar. I have to admit, this one caught me a little off guard!  While I love Apple Cider Vinegar in barbecue sauces, German Potato Salad, and a lot of other recipes, I’ve never considered taking a spoonful or two of it. Apparently, I don’t know what I’ve been missing.  Apple Cider Vinegar has a calming effect on your stomach and naturally alleviates stomach acid. In fact, a lot of people who haven’t gotten relief for their Acid Reflux Disease with other methods have had great success with Apple Cider Vinegar – something that was probably in their pantry the whole time.  Simply add 2 teaspoons to a glass of water and drink three times per day.  The water will make it more palatable – as will the knowledge that you’re chasing stomach acid away.

See Treating Acid Reflux Symptoms (Fox News) for a few more suggestions.

Foods That Help Acid Reflux Symptoms:

The following foods are known to help naturally treat acid reflux disease and help keep acid from forming in the first place. (Source)

  • Red apples
  • Ginger root
  • Basil leaves
  • Herbal teas
  • Grapefruit
  • Yellow mustard
  • Fennel seed
  • Pickles

A Few Other Simple Tips for Treating Acid Reflux Disease:

  1. Eat slowly. Take your time to chew each bite thoroughly and even put your fork or spoon down between bites.
  2. Don’t eat while flustered, angry, or even agitated! Chill out… THEN eat in peace.
  3. Keep a food journal.  If you take a few weeks (or even months to be especially thorough) and write down everything you eat and drink each day – then note whether you’ve experienced pain and discomfort or not – you may see a pattern develop. Your problem could possibly be solved simply by cutting out certain foods, or even restaurants.  Common “problem” foods include fatty foods (because they’re more difficult to digest), fried foods, citrus fruits, garlic, chocolate, caffeine, and tomatoes. Keep in mind, however, that foods that bother one person may not bother you one bit. That’s why a personal food journal is the best way to go – then you’ll know the only “problem” foods that really matter – those that are a problem for YOU!
  4. Eat small meals frequently as opposed to a couple of large meals each day.  This advice is given for so many different issues that I’m starting to think it’s simply healthier to eat lightly throughout the day. Whether it’s weight loss, hiatal hernias, stomach ulcers, or acid reflux disease, this advice is golden.  When it comes to acid reflux disease, the correlation is simple: Large meals force the stomach to create more acid. Is it any wonder all-you-can-eat buffets often spell misery?
  5. Be smart about when you eat.  Don’t eat right before exercising or right before going to bed (or even lying down on the couch for a cat nap).  You should wait at least 3 hours after eating before going to bed.

 

Finally, if you battle acid reflux (either several times a week or several times a year), I highly recommend the best book I’ve found on the subject: The Complete Idiot’s Guide to the Acid Reflux Diet. Click the link to find this great book on Amazon or click the following link to read my The Complete Idiot’s Guide to the Acid Reflux Diet Review.

Bouncing Back from Life’s Challenges and Disappointments

An Inspirational Article by Author Linda Graham: Hiccups and Hurricanes

Bouncing Back by Linda GrahamWhen you read (or hear) the words “bouncing back,” what do you think of? I suppose it’s because I’ve had three daughters, but when I see/hear the words, I initially think of “bouncing back” from a 9 month pregnancy, labor, and recovery.  I imagine the time and effort it takes to “feel whole” again.

This imagery can actually accompany anything that we need to “bounce back” from.

I remember when my husband’s mother passed away.  When we went to a ballgame soon after and my husband was taking business calls as he ate popcorn and got ready to throw out the first pitch, I thought “he’s returning to a type of normalcy.”  Put another way, he was “bouncing back.”  All of us who have lost loved ones know that, at some point, you have to get up and carry on. You have to find a way to smile again and look at the future with hope as you make peace with the past and present.

Whether it’s the loss of a loved one, a health set-back, financial thunderstorm, or relationship disaster – we either bounce back or we stay down.

Staying down just isn’t an option, right.

A very talented author, Linda Graham, MFT, has written a fascinating, thought-provoking, and challenging book wonderfully titled Bouncing Back: Rewiring Your Brain for Maximum Resilience and Well-Being.

From the Back Cover of Bouncing Back:

Resilience is the ability to face and handle life’s challenges, whether everyday disappointments or extraordinary disasters. While resilience is innate in the brain, over time we learn unhelpful patterns, which then become fixed in our neural circuitry. But science is now revealing that what previously seemed hardwired can be rewired, and Bouncing Back shows us how. With powerful, time-tested exercises, Linda Graham guides us in rebuilding our core well-being and disaster-proofing our brains.

Below is an article that was written by Linda Graham. It sort of “sets the stage” for the book.

Hiccups and Hurricanes: Bouncing Back from Life’s Challenges

By Linda Graham

We are all called upon to cope with hiccups and hurricanes in our lives — losing our wallet and car keys, discovering mold in the bathroom, missing three days at the office to care for a sick child — and we do. We are resilient heroes in our own lives every day as we skillfully navigate the disruptive, unwanted changes of the washing machine going on the fritz or the car needing a new transmission.

Occasionally we have to respond with grace under pressure to greater troubles and tragedies: infertility or infidelity, a diagnosis of pancreatic cancer, losing a job, a son wounded in combat overseas.

The way we can bounce back from such everyday disappointments and extraordinary disasters is through resilience – capacities innate in the brain to respond to the inevitable twists and turns in life flexibly and adaptively.

Modern neuroscience is revealing how we can harness the brain’s capacities of neuroplasticity to rewire our habitual patterns of response to strengthen what I call the 5 C’s of coping:

  1. Calm: You can stay calm in a crisis.
  2. Clarity: You can see clearly what’s happening as well as your internal response to what’s happening; you can see what needs to happen next; and you can see possibilities from different perspectives that will enhance your ability to respond flexibly.
  3. Connection: You can reach out for help as needed; you can learn from others how to be resilient; and you can connect to resources that greatly expand your options.
  4. Competence: You can call on skills and competencies that you have learned through previous experience to act quickly and effectively.
  5. Courage: You can strengthen your faith to persevere in your actions until you come to resolution or acceptance of the difficulty.

More than 80 exercises in Bouncing Back allow you to do this rewiring safely, efficiently, effectively.  The tools and techniques drawn from mindfulness practices and relational psychology create and accelerate brain change and strengthen the parts of the brain we need to cope.  You recover a deep resilience and well-being that will last a lifetime.

An example: Keep CALM and Carry On

The fastest way to regulate the body’s stress response and return to a sense of calm is to activate the release of oxytocin in the brain.  Oxytocin is the neurostransmitter of safety and trust and is the brain’s direct and immediate antidote to the stress hormone cortisol.  Oxytocin can be thought of as the neurochemical foundation of resilience.

The fastest way to release oxytocin and mitigate stress is through safe touch in a soothing relationship.  Fortunately, neuroscientists have demonstrated many times that even remembering or imaging someone we love and by whom we feel loved is enough to release small but regular doses of oxytocin.

Exercise: Hand on the Heart

We come into steady calm by experiencing moments of feeling safe, loved, and cherished and letting those moments register in our body and encode new circuitry in our brain. This exercise offers a way to evoke those feelings.

1. Begin by placing your hand on your heart, feeling the warmth of your own touch. Breathe gently and deeply into your heart center, taking in a sense of calm, peace, goodness, safety, trust, acceptance, and ease.

2. Once that’s steady, call to mind a moment of being with someone who loves you unconditionally, someone you feel completely safe with. This may, of course, be a partner, child, or parent; but if the dynamics of those relationships are complicated and the emotions mixed, you may choose any true other to your true self: a dear friend, a trusted teacher, a close colleague or neighbor, a therapist, your grandmother, a spiritual figure like Jesus or the Dalai Lama, or your wiser self. Pets are also great for this exercise.

3. As you remember feeling safe and loved with this person or pet, see if you can sense in your body the positive feelings and sensations associated with that memory. Really savor a feeling of warmth, safety, trust, and love in your body.

4. When that feeling is steady, let go of the image and simply bathe in the feeling itself for thirty seconds. Savor the rich nurturing of this feeling; let it really soak in.

The Neuroscience:

Breathing deeply, gently, and fully activates the calming branch of our autonomic nervous system, the parasympathetic branch. The parasympathetic modulates the body-brain’s fight-flight-freeze response when we feel threatened or agitated. Breathing, or pranayama, has been a core practice in yoga and meditation to relax the body and steady the mind for over 3,500 years.

Breathing positive emotions into the heart center steadies the heart rate, restoring the equilibrium of the body so that we can remain present and engaged. In evoking a memory or image of feeling loved and cherished, we evoke a sense of safe connection with others; the oxytocin immediately
reduces our stress.  That evocation also activates the prefrontal cortex, which triggers the hippo-campus to search for explicit memories of moments when we have been held, soothed, protected, encouraged, believed in, times when we have reached out for help and received comfort and support

Through safety and trust in connection, we come back into our baseline equilibrium. From there, with our higher, thinking brain calm and alert, we can mobilize quickly, act skillfully, and take care of business.

Based on the book Bouncing Back: Rewiring Your Brain for Maximum Resilience and Well-Being. Copyright © 2013 by Linda Graham. Reprinted with permission from New World Library. www.NewWorldLibrary.com.

*    *    *    *    *
Linda Graham, MFT, is a licensed psychotherapist and meditation teacher in full-time practice in the San Francisco Bay Area. She integrates her passion for neuroscience, mindfulness, and relational psychology through trainings, consultations, workshops, and conferences nationally. She publishes a monthly e-newsletter, Healing and Awakening into Aliveness and Wholeness, and weekly e-quotes on resources for recovering resilience, archived at www.lindagraham-mft.net.

Find Bouncing Back: Rewiring Your Brain for Maximum Resilience and Well-Being on Amazon!

One Small Step Can Open a Whole New World

Don't Let Life Slip Away from You!

No Line Bifocals

I know, better than anyone, that my advice isn’t worth pure gold. Even on my best day, I’d never suggest that anything I have to say is worth a $20 bill. Someone once suggested that I charge people to read certain articles on Self Help Daily. I was relieved that he suggested it in e-mail, so he didn’t have to see me throw my head back and laugh as I said, “Oh, that’s a good one!”

I don’t have an over-inflated sense of myself or anything about me… well, I take that back. I’m beyond cocky about my cooking. I’m pretty sure that if anyone ever told me something I cooked or baked was less than a 10 on a scale of 1-10, I’d grab them by their neck collar and throw them out of my kitchen, all the while asking them how they managed to live to this point with absolutely no taste buds.

I’d offer to set up a fund and solicit money to buy them a new tongue – one with taste buds that actually function. I’m just charitable like that.

In all seriousness (an area I seldom visit), the advice I’m about to lay on you is golden. It’s the best advice you will get all year.

I’m not being cocky.

I’m not being grandiose.

I’m simply being honest.

If you have anything in the world that stands between you and enjoying the world to its absolute fullest, I plead with you to take the one small step to navigate around it.

I have been needing new glasses for years. YEARS. But, like most people, I kept seeing other things that I’d rather spend time and money on. Looking back, I know just how ridiculous I was. I’d even go as far to say that I was foolish.

Since I’d last gotten a pair of glasses, my vision has changed a great deal. I could tell when driving or riding in a car, for example, that I couldn’t read signs I was pretty sure I once read. When reading a book or the back of a cereal box, for that matter, I always had to take my glasses off or peek over the top in what I always termed my “annoyed librarian look.” The kind of look a librarian throws to kids who aren’t talking with their “indoors voice.”

The vision change happened so gradually I wasn’t fully aware of just how much I was missing. I knew that I had been slacking off on my writing and reading, but I guess (somehow) I never attributed it to the simple fact that trying to SEE the words I wanted to type and read had become such a challenge.

I knew I needed stronger glasses and I knew I needed bifocal lenses. But I kept putting it off – for years. And years. It wasn’t vanity because thanks to AMAZING technology, today’s bifocals look exactly like all other glasses. “No Line Bifocals” look the same as all other glasses. It boggles the mind, but NO ONE knows you’re wearing bifocals except you. You know it when you can actually read without taking off your glasses, you know when the text on your phone is clearer than ever, and you know when you don’t whip out your annoyed librarian look while reading small print.

More than anything, I think I was afraid of being able to adjust to bifocal lenses. I envisioned myself getting seasick just walking through the room. I pictured myself floundering in a distorted world that suddenly seemed like a house of mirrors.

I got my beautiful new No Line Bifocal glasses this weekend and am relieved to say I’m neither seasick or floundering. What I am is amazed.  Absolutely amazed.  A whole new world has, literally, been opened up for me and I realize, now, that I didn’t even realize, then, just how much I was missing.

As soon as we left Lenscrafters, I found myself reading billboards and restaurant names from FAR away.  Because my vision had deteriorated slowly, the world had, in a sense, slowly slipped away from me.  But the story has such a happy ending, I can’t even feel sad for the time lost – I’m too excited for the time saved!

If you need glasses, bifocal lenses, hearing aids, or anything else that will help open a whole new world for you, again, I’m pleading with you to simply take the small step needed to walk through the door.  The world may be slowly slipping away from you and, because it’s been so gradual, you may not even completely realize it.

My mother experienced gradual hearing loss beginning at a very young age. Although everyone needed to repeat things to her several times, she always seemed to think that people were mumbling.  Everyone, thinking of what all she was missing, kept telling her to get her hearing checked because she needed hearing aids.  No one did it in an ugly manner, of course – only jerks do that.  Personally, I never even minded repeating myself.  If someone actually cares enough about what I say to ask me to repeat it… I’m flattered!

However, my mom (who was such a character, I can’t even tell you – she was the very definition of a PILL!) did what just about everyone with hearing loss did. If she’d already asked someone to repeat themselves several times – she didn’t want to keep on asking, “What?” or “Excuse me?”  She’d simply kind of guess at what they’d said and either laugh or or answer with something she hoped would fit the situation.

Sometimes she’d be so off base I’d have to laugh.  She’d answer my dad at times with completely off the wall responses and I can still see the befuddled expression on his face.  One time he told her that the heat needed to be turned up “a couple of notches” and she said, “I’m going to the store later.”  He said, “Okay. Let’s go with that.”

To which she replied, “Of course you can go with me.”

He then looked at me and whispered, “Help.”

While we sometimes laugh at moments that surround vision and hearing – at ourselves as well as others – let’s be honest. It’s not all that funny, is it?  While we may tell ourselves, “I’m as blind as a bat!” or while someone may tell us, “You can’t hear a lick!” – I don’t think anything that stands between someone and life is anything to laugh at.

My mom, to her credit, did make an appointment for a hearing test. She got a couple of hearing aids and, honestly, tears kind of come to my eyes when I remember the look on her face when she heard birds singing for the first time in what must have been 20 or more years.  We were in front of her house and she said, “Listen!  The birds are singing!”

I thought, Momma, they’ve been singing all along.

So often, she’d ask us, “Have you always been able to hear that?”

She started calling her hearing aids her “ears” and would often say something like, “We can go in a minute… just let me put my ears on.”

The world had slowly slipped away from her and she didn’t even know it.   You, while reading these words, may be in the same boat as my mom (hearing loss) or with me (vision problems).  The world could be slipping slowly away from you, and that really breaks my heart.

If the only thing standing between you and hearing aids, glasses, reading glasses, or bifocal lenses is vanity – let me give you a wake up call.  No one cares. They really don’t.  I think a lot of people are afraid of looking “old” or of being perceived as “old” when it comes to glasses and hearing aids.

Duh!  There are grade school kids who require glasses and hearing aids.  Besides, I’ll give you another little wake up call.  If you’re in your fifties, you aren’t keeping that a secret from anyone, no matter what you may think.  The world will know you’re there and, guess what… again, they don’t care! Fifties and sixties, today are like the yesterday’s forties.

Never be ashamed of your age… be proud.

Besides, let’s be honest, who will be perceived as older, the one who has to do the “annoyed librarian” move or the one who simply sees what they want to see.  Who’ll be perceived as older, the one who says, “What?” or the one who gives a perfect answer every time, right on cue?

Today’s glasses and hearing aids are made so stylish, anyway.  With people living longer, companies are making sure that these products are as fashionable and discreet as ever. Trust me, you’ll be blown away.

You’ll want to kick yourself for not taking that first step sooner. When you’re seeing or hearing everything you’ve been missing, you will feel like a whole new world has opened up right before you.  Think of the scene in the movie Avatar when Pandora opens up for the first time.  It’s like that… only better.

You’ll find that you have more time to actually LIVE and enjoy life. You may not realize just how much effort it takes to try to do things others take for granted. I spent so much time taking glasses off, putting glasses on, walking closer to see what I needed to see, etc. I never realized how much effort I was having to put into life!  The same is true for those who have hearing loss. They have to ask others to repeat what they said (and subject themselves to some people who get annoyed when they have to repeat themselves), they have to try to read lips (my mom mastered this trick), they have to, nervously, throw out an answer and hope for the best.

That’s a lot of effort. It’s also a great big fat (and needless) barrier between yourself and life.

Please don’t live on the sidelines any longer. Make this the week you call for an appointment. There is LITERALLY a whole new world waiting for you to step into it. You just have to make that first step.  As I’m typing these words, I see my computer screen more clearly than ever. The words are sharp and clear.  Every now and then, I glance out of the window my my desk and window and see the birds and trees that I love so much. They had been slowly fading away from me and I can’t tell you how overjoyed I am to have them back.

When things fade away gradually, you never realize it fully until you have them back again.  I stopped reading the signs on the way home because it occurred to me, my husband has seen them all along. He doesn’t need me to read them to him!  So, I silently read them to myself and felt so much joy that I had trouble containing it.

The world is a joyful, beautiful thing. Please don’t let it slip away. I feel so strongly about this that it hit me this morning – if my words and our story (mine and my mom’s) can make just one person take that first step, every minute I’ve ever put into Self Help Daily will have been more than worth it.

 ”Listen!  The birds are singing!“  (Momma, they’ve been singing all along.)

Could This Be The Most Potentially Life-Changing Quote of All Time?

I Think We Can Make a Strong Case for It!

What you allow is what will continue

As you know, I’m an avid collector and great lover of inspirational quotes. I’m not sure I ever met one I didn’t want to sit down and spend a little time with. Over the years, I find that I always have a few “favorite quotes of the moment.”  The quotes that just seem to find their way into every conversation and seem to be applicable to whatever is going on around me.

Funny thing is, the quote you see above has been a favorite quote for as long as I can remember.  What you allow is what will continue. It never goes out of style, never gets old, and (as far as I’m concerned) should never leave your side.

This past week, alone, the quote came to mind in three different instances.

  1. My husband and I were at a favorite restaurant in town that often seems to have a problem with being understaffed. We’ve heard, on several occasions, that they have a problem with servers simply calling in at the last minute. As the manager ran around like a chicken in search of its head, I wanted desperately to write the quote down and slip it to him as he flew past our table on one of his trips. If he keeps allowing his workers to treat him, the restaurant, and their co-workers this way, they will.  It’ll continue.
  2. I heard about a girl (from one of my daughters) who has a ridiculously unhealthy relationship with her boyfriend. He treats this girl in a way that makes me want to smack him in the head… with an electric eel.  And she isn’t even MY daughter – I don’t want to even think what he’d be in for if she were! The relationship (if you can even call it that) has been going on like this for a few years and, by now, this unhealthy and abnormal reality probably seems normal to this young girl.  What I wouldn’t give for 10 minutes with her.  If she continues to allow herself to be treated like a doormat, this jerk will continue to trample on her.
  3. Okay, time to rat on myself. I try to eat healthy. Like most people, these days, I try to make the right choices in the store, in my kitchen, and in restaurants.  A few times this week (alone!) I messed up big time. Let’s see, I messed up in the grocery store by buying unhealthy snacks, I messed up at home by choosing the unhealthy ones over the beautiful fruit that was sitting on the counter, and I messed up in a restaurant (Seriously, Joi? Three rolls?  With Butter?) I whipped out the beloved quote on myself last night in the grocery store. I had a bag of Doritos in my hand, licking my lips as I was thisclose to throwing it into the cart.  Then I realized that if I keep allowing my inner snacker (she has the rationality of a 10 year old) to call the shots, my downward spiral will continue.  I put the bag of crunchy goodness back on the shelf and got some celery instead. It was cheaper, healthier, and is one step in breaking a cycle I want to break.

The celery over Doritos choice may seem small – and I guess, compared to gleefully eating 3 rolls… with butter… it is small. However, we’d all do well to keep in mind that every choice we make either carries us one step forward, one step backward, or sinks us further in the ground where we stand.

If the thought of staying where you are – or going backward – makes you cringe, realize that you have to break the cycle. You have to proactively step OUT of the steps you’ve been walking in and proactively carve out a new path. Don’t think of it as the end, think of it as the beginning.

Today can be the first day of an exciting new life. One in which you smile more than you’ve ever smiled before, felt better than ever, and find that laughing is downright addictive!

Don’t even try telling me that doesn’t sound exciting.

As I’ve mentioned before, one of the most searched things on Google is How to Be Happy. Ironically, that fact makes me pretty sad! The thought of so many people out there who may be so removed from happiness that they’re turning to a search engine to remember where it is… well, that’s sad.  The thing is, we’re born happy. When we’re babies and toddlers, we wear our happiness on our face for the world to see.  Think of the insanely popular videos on YouTube of babies laughing.  People (including me) love these videos as spend copious amounts of time watching them… laughing with the babies the entire time.

Why? Because pure joy is a beautiful, intoxicating thing.  If we allow the wrong things to keep playing out, we’ll continue to be further and further removed from happiness and joy.

Leave behind anything that stands between you and happiness and, while you’re at it,  tuck this life-changing quote into your pocket so you never forget it again…..

What you allow is what will continue. My wish for you is that you’ll only allow positive, uplifting, joyous things in your life because… mark it down.. they’ll continue! Pure joy is what I want for YOU – the kind you just can’t keep in or hide.

It’s All in the Attitude, Don’t Bother Looking Anywhere Else

Adjust Your Attitude - Adjust Your World

TractorIf you’re looking for happiness, peace, and even a better life, look no further than your attitude. Your attitude is the driving force in your life.  By the way, the picture of the tractor will make sense in a minute.

When it comes to quotes or stories, I’m ALL about giving credit to the original source. However, some stories and quotes are so good that they’ve been around the world so many times no one knows where they originally came from.

One of my favorite such stories is this one:

A woman woke up one morning, looked in the mirror, and noticed she had only three hairs on her head. She said,  “I think I’ll braid my hair today.” She did and she had a great day.

The next day she woke up, looked in the mirror and saw that she had only two hairs on her head. “Well, I think I’ll part my hair down the middle today.” She did and she had a wonderful day.

 The next day she woke up, looked in the mirror and noticed that she had only one hair on her head. “Hmmm. I think I’ll wear my hair in a ponytail today.“  She did just that and had a fun day.

The next day she woke up, looked in the mirror and noticed that there wasn’t a single hair on her head. “Yes!” she exclaimed, “I don’t have to fix my hair today!

Now that’s what I call a great attitude!

When I sat down to write (well it’s actually typing, isn’t it?) an article about attitude, my mind started sorting through my favorite quotes and stories about attitude.  My aunt’s quote, after she learned she had breast cancer, “I never ask why me, I ask, well…why NOT me?” was the first quote to spring to mind. She was immediately followed by the story about the woman with three dwindling hairs.

By the way, my aunt beat cancer and it hasn’t had the audacity to knock on her door again.

You know how, in life, people tend to give an inordinate amount of credit to certain people – whether it’s credit for things going right OR for things going wrong?  In the grocery store the other day, a man in the cereal aisle read the price of one of the cereals aloud, then followed it with, “Thank you very much, Obama.”  He’s no different than the woman I heard blaming President Bush for a tornado that tore through the Midwest.   I’m certain President Obama didn’t price the cereal and I pretty sure President Bush didn’t summon up a tornado.

People just love to “pin” things on people, don’t they?!

Having said that, I may be just as ridiculous sometimes as these two – not when it comes to blaming people, but when it comes to blaming character traits.  I tend to blame 80 percent of people’s suffering on having the wrong attitude.  Bad attitudes are my “fall guys.”

Before you try reasoning with me, I’ll admit, there are other negative traits or habits that can cause problems.  Sometimes people procrastinate, sometimes they’re hard-headed, sometimes they’re lazy. Heck, sometimes they’re simply as dumb as a bag of rocks!  You don’t have to look hard or branch out far to see that.

However, I maintain that A LOT of problems we face can be handled with adjusting our attitude.

A sour, defeatist, poor-poor-me attitude only increases your suffering. It also pushes people about as far  away as they can be pushed.  If you’re feeling sorrow or grief, by all means express it – just be certain not to wallow in it.

Feel the pain (whether it’s grief, remorse, or a good old-fashioned broken heart), take a deep breath, get up, and get on with life.

No matter what has happened in your life, you MUST have the attitude that the best is yet to come. You MUST tell yourself that, while your yesterdays were great, they don’t even hold a candle to your tomorrows!

Have I ever told you about a baseball pitcher we once knew? When we lived in Louisville, Kentucky, we were season ticket holders for a AAA team – the Louisville Bats (Riverbats before that). For those unfamiliar with baseball (I don’t even know you anymore!), if a player is on a AAA team, they aren’t playing major league ball yet (or making the “big bucks”).  Many are thisclose to the majors, but many are also thisclose to AA.

Anyway, as far as pitchers go, our guy was “okay.”  When he was on the mound for our team, my whole family would practically hold our breath – willing him to be brilliant, simply because we liked him so much.  I’m thinking it would have been impossible not to.  He was the kind of person who you just KNEW got out of bed smiling in the morning, daring the world to knock the smile off of his face.  He always had something to say and seemed, genuinely, thrilled to have the honor of being a part of the beautiful thing we call life.

A lot of baseball players in the minor leagues would have nasty attitudes. They’d snarl, almost seemingly pouting. They wouldn’t sign autographs for fans and they wouldn’t stop to talk to you if their life depended on it.  However, a lot of guys (like our smiling pitcher) were having fun with life and had great attitudes.  One of the nicest, coolest guys to ever come through the system was Adam Dunn – if you follow baseball, I know you’ve heard of him.  His attitude could not have been better.

Leave it to me to get side-tracked with baseball talk. I’m obsessed with the game. Could you tell?

Think of people in your own life who have great attitudes. The people who are so darn happy and upbeat that you get in a better mood simply from being around them. They’re the complete opposite of the vampires, aren’t they? Vampires are, of course, the ones who try to suck the fun out of life. If you aren’t careful, they’ll try to suck as much out of your life as they do their own. You’ve been warned.

I’m going to give you a little peak into an approach I’ve frequently taken in life.  I call it looking for the UP side to any given situation. I’ve had a pretty eventful life and, along the way, I figured something out.  Looking UP is the key to happiness (and sanity!). Looking DOWN is the key to misery.

Whichever way you face… you go.

When I lost my father (who was far too young to have died), I held on to the thought that he was in Heaven now and would never be sick again.  I also kept reminding myself that I’d never have to go through losing my dad again and would never see him sick or hurt. Years later, I would have to rely on the same approach with my mom when she suddenly decided to move on to Heaven. When my oldest daughter got married and moved out of the house (what was she thinking?!), I refused to think of how much I missed seeing her beautiful face each day and thought, instead, of how good her new husband is to her, how much he makes her laugh, and how much I love both of them.

Would feelings of sadness creep in from time to time? Of course!  But when they did (or do), I immediately focus on the positives.  Sometimes you have to really, really, really look hard. In fact, sometimes all you can say is, “Well, the sun’s shining…”

Years ago, I taught Sunday School for little bity people. My class was made up of 4, 5 and 6 year olds. I was talking to them about always being thankful and about telling others how thankful and happy they were. One ridiculously cute  little boy happened to be (shhhh, don’t tell anyone) one of my favorites.  He wasn’t the best behaved, mind you. In fact, he never sat still and didn’t hesitate for a second to say what was on his mind.  What can I say, he amused me and kept things interesting. His name was Zachary and I’d have taken 20 of him. As they were coloring pictures after our story about thankfulness and happiness, he raised his little hand. I thought, “Here we go…” after asking him what was on his mind.  He said something about having a bad day and not feeling happy. No doubt, he’d been in trouble with his dad that morning – Heaven only knows what’d he’d gotten into!

I told him that he should think about something that makes him happy when he felt upset. Something that he was thankful for.  I asked him to name something that made him smile – because that would be something he was thankful for. He thought about it for a minute, went back to coloring (obviously still thinking), then looked up with a smile on his face. He said tractors made him smile and that he was thankful for tractors.  His grandparents were farmers and his dad, no doubt, had a tractor too. They obviously meant good times to this little live wire and maybe even represented a favorite loved one.

I looked all week for a coloring book with pictures of tractors, but when I put the picture of a tractor in front of him with his crayons, his face lit up so brightly it made the work more than worth it!

We all have things that make our faces light up. We all have things that make us smile – from the inside, out. As much as is possible, always try to focus on these things – especially when you’re going through a rough patch.  When having a rotten day, think of the woman with three hairs, then two hairs, then one hair, then no hair!

Don’t let bad situations get the best of you – they don’t deserve it. Turn the tables on life by turning the dial on your attitude.   Remember, you GO in the direction you’re facing.  Don’t look down… look up!

Quote of the Day: The Journey

A Great Quote About Life

Owensobro, Kentucky

Sometimes we become so focused on the finish line, that we fail to find joy in the journey. – Unknown

More quotes about life.

I Think We’re Seeing a New Breed of People Being Born Right Before Our Eyes

Frankly, It's Not a Very Pretty Sight...

Quote About Egotism

Picture it. A documentary is coming on the television set. The music sets a dramatic tone.  The narrator (let’s give him a British accent for effect) announces that a new tribe of people has been discovered in (surprisingly) a part of the world that isn’t even remotely remote. You lean in close, wondering how a new race of people could have hidden all these years, undetected.  You watch, expecting them to be draped in animal skins, living in caves, speaking in grunts, and sporting, possibly, nose rings.

You admit to yourself that maybe you watch too much National Geographic.

As you wait, literally on the edge of your couch, for the big reveal, the camera zeroes in on the new breed.

Wait… What???

It’s us. As images of social media, pictures on Facebook and Instagram, infidelity statistics, divorce rates, and so on flash across the screen, the narrator pauses dramatically then announces the name of the new breed:  the Self Absorbed.

Dum-dum-dum-dum.

Kidding aside, I just have to ask, what is with people these days?  Why are so many individuals as self absorbed as high-end paper towels? When I was in high school, the ancestors of the self absorbed were called “self centered.”  But the generation they gave way to has far surpassed their efforts.

Odds are you know at least one person (the odds are greater that you know quite a few) who is self absorbed.  Heck you may even be showing signs of heading that way yourself.  If that’s the case, take heart.  Maybe this article was meant for YOU and will prove as a life boat to keep you from drowning in a sea of YOU.

When something happens gradually, it becomes our NORMAL.  What we accept as the norm today would have mortified us 20 years ago.  As a comparatively small example, think about the commercials you see on TV today.  If you could transport yourself back 20 or even 10 years ago, can you imagine your reaction if you saw some of this crap come on? Something my husband used to do, when our girls were younger was probably the best way of handling idiot commercials I’ve ever seen.  He’d always have a “back up” channel in place during the show we were watching (especially during sporting events, where commercials really show their immaturity).  He’d flip over to the “back up channel” (usually the Golf Channel or the Weather Channel) as soon as the commercials tried to throw themselves into our living room.

Since he didn’t want three young girls exposed to stupidity and flirtations with porn, he’d simply opt out.  He was a dad who didn’t want to let what was becoming “norm” to the rest of  the world to become the “norm” for his family.

Unfortunately, the commercials – gradually – have become even worse.

Isn’t that how most things happen? Slowly. Gradually.  Then you sit there one evening while a commercial plays out that leaves your jaw on the floor as you ask, “America… what happened?!”

Like commercials (and magazines, movies, television, music…), the road to self absorption for so many people has happened gradually.  They didn’t set out to become narcissists.  But unfortunately, they didn’t set out NOT to become narcissists either.

nar·cis·sist

[nahr-suh-sist] noun

1. a person who is overly self-involved, and often vain and selfish.
2. Psychoanalysis . a person who suffers from narcissism, deriving erotic gratification from admiration of his or her own physical or mental attributes.

Signs of a Self Absorbed

In a nutshell, the self absorbed makes every single moment, every single situation, and every single experience about them.  What matters most isn’t who they are with, the beauty around them,  the moment they’re in, or what they can do for anyone else.

What matters most to them is… well… them.

A few questions that’ll help classify a self absorbed person:

  • Does the person talk, at length, about their health, their diet, or their appearance?
  • Does the person buy things only for himself or herself?
  • Does the person ever do “cool” things for others?
  • Does the person give to charities… could the person even name three charities?!?!
  • Does the person look at the world around them or are they too busy demanding that the world look at them?
  • On Twitter, is the person 95% about self-promotion?
  • On Facebook, are they begging others to LIKE them (or their product) or are they working hard, giving others a reason TO like them?
  • Does the person ask… and actually listen to the answer… how someone else’s day was?
  • Is the person friendly, respectful, and courteous to servers in restaurants or do they have the, “You are here to serve me and you’d better do a darn good job!” mentality?
  • Does the person have any idea, whatsoever, what’s actually going on in the world – or is the world, to them, literally what’s in the room with them?
  • The self absorbed individual is the one who, when talking about their success (something they’re always doing),  shows pictures of their car, their vacation, and sometimes even their home.  I’m never impressed with that – come on, just about anyone can buy a car or take a vacation!   To borrow a phrase from an old Shania Twain song, “That don’t impress me much.”  Show me what you’re doing to make THE world a better place, not YOUR world.  Show me how you’re helping precious children who need someone to care, show me how you’re saving a beautiful animal from becoming extinct, show me how you’re helping elderly people live out their lives with dignity, show me how you’re making the world a better place. Put your car in the garage, dude, it’s the least of my worries.

In Defense of the Self Absorbed

Before you start to think I hate self absorbed or self centered people – I do not. I don’t hate anyone.  In fact, I feel sorry for them because if you limit your world to YOU, you’re missing out on so, SO much.  If you make every situation, every day, every holiday, every moment all about you, you’re missing out on everyone around you. What’s more, you’re creating a void between you and everyone else. If your life is all about you 24/7, make no mistake about it, you’ll end up pushing everyone away and you will be left with your one true obsession.. yourself. How lonely does that sound?

As I said earlier, sometimes things happen slowly over time. Many self absorbed people slowly transition into being that way because of a health scare or other dramatic event in their lives.  A loss of a very close loved one makes some people become very self absorbed.

Over my lifetime, I’ve seen a lot of people become very self absorbed because of a health issue or because of  aging.  They become, literally, obsessed and preoccupied with the person they see in the mirror.  They’re every conversation and thought is channeled in that direction.

To me, that’s not LIVING, that’s simply TRYING NOT TO DIE.

There’s a big difference.  But, again, things happen slowly over time. The same person who would have been mortified by the idea 10 years ago is, today, discussing bodily functions with the hostess at Cracker Barrel and medications with a stranger in Target. Just because someone politely asks, “How are you doing?” doesn’t mean they want your medical history.

When you read interviews with people who have celebrated their 100th birthday, they look back over a life of living. They don’t look back over a life of trying not to die.

I think we have to cut our young people a little bit of slack, too.  Young girls and boys, today, have grown up with Facebook, Instagram, constantly taking selfies (pictures taken by oneself of oneself), reality TV, and with the mindset of “By gosh, it IS all about me!”  Sadly, it’s their norm.

And our future is in their hands.

Are you scared now?

Dangers Posed by the Self Absorbed

I am a positive person – very positive, in fact. However, even I am driven to say that the self absorbed breed could just be our downfall.  Think about some of the problems we face.

  • Divorce rates are through the roof.  Self absorbed people don’t think about the other person, all that matters TO them IS them. So what if they “flirt” online or go to websites that bother their spouse – it’s their life, by gosh, and they’ll do what they want.  And then they do…. all the way to divorce court.
  • People are falling for scams online left and right. The person they THINK they’re having a relationship with is completely different from what they think. Sometimes the other person is actually married and often they aren’t even the sex they believe them to be! Talk about awkward.  When people only care about themselves, they don’t care if they hurt another individual or not. They don’t even care if they wreck their world.  Remember, the self absorbed care only about themselves – all others are irrelevant.
  • Relationships are crumbling because men and women seem to have complete misconceptions about infidelity.  If you are in a committed relationship, your every e-mail, “tweet,” direct message, etc. should be able to be seen by your companion.  If they can’t be (without you wanting to run for the hills), you’re cheating. Plain and simple. I read a few days ago something that stood out to me. If you could not exchange phones with your significant other without panicking, you need to wake up.  Same can be said about e-mail and social media. Self absorbed people only think about what makes them feel good at the moment – they don’t have any respect or regard for anyone else.  And then they wonder why their relationship fails.
  • I don’t get shocked easily.  I always say the reason for that is I lived with three teenage daughters – how in the world could anything shock me?! However, I am shocked by what’s considered normal these days. During the Super Bowl, for example, there were about 3 different commercials that left me grasping for reality. Do advertisers not realize (or give a darn) that kids watch television? Do they not realize that the only people who buy their products aren’t 15 year old boys?!  Many companies are just as self absorbed as the individuals who run them.  They think, “I’ll do what I want to do, and if offends people… I’ll probably just make more money.”
  • Self absorbed people are the ones who text while they drive. The dangers they pose don’t matter – the only thing that matters is that they have something to say and… after all… their words are worth any chaos they cause.  Especially if they happen to have a picture of themselves to show off.
  • One of the biggest dangers of the self absorbed person is the fact that they’re keeping the breed going.  They’re continuing a “norm” that needs desperately to end.

Is There Any Hope for the Self Absorbed?!

If you had an uneasy, “Uh oh” moment when you read the words “self absorbed” and saw a bit of yourself in the descriptions, you’re lucky.  You’re probably cured already.  Sometimes all it takes is a wake up call. It’s kind of like taking a good look in the mirror before going out for dinner and a movie and seeing that your hair’s standing straight up.  It’s not a pretty sight, but thanks be to God you saw it before anyone else!

Personally, I think there’s hope for even the most self absorbed people.  If not… at least they provide the rest of us with a little free entertainment.  Just be sure you don’t buy into what they’re selling – it really isn’t any way to live.

 

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