The Meaning of Living- According to Jim Carrey

Jim Carrey

One of my favorite Comedians has always been Jim Carrey, and Dumb and Dumber has been one of my all time favorite movies. I had previously heard that Jim Carrey is brilliant, and I had thought it was one of those things people say about someone. Today I had the privilege of listening to a Speech he gave at a University this year. I think it’s the most succinct compilation of thoughts I’ve ever heard that gives a glimpse of what Life is about. I took down a few of the ones that touched me, because they reflected the path that my life is on currently.  I highly recommend that you look at the video: Full Speech: Jim Carrey’s Commencement Address at the 2014 MUM Graduation

(The following is a few of the Quotes he gave in the speech, along with a few of my thoughts and why I think what he said is noteworthy)

  • You can fail at what you don’t want, so you might as well take a chance on doing what you Love (For me I see people living life according to what they think society and others want them to do, and many of them seem soo unhappy. So why not do something that you’re passionate about, something that makes you feel alive and vibrant at your core)
  • Live your life asking how can I have an effect on the world while I’m here?
  • Ask how can my gift change the world, not what can the world do for me.
  • What if people see me without my mask! (The lesson here is to not let fear and the EGO stop you from being your authentic self)
  • To find peace you first have to let the Armour go. (Instead of fighting against who you are, your authentic self, stop worrying about what the world thinks. The masks we wear prevent us from achieving full happiness. To find peace within ourselves, we must let go of all of these things)
  • Our need for acceptance, can also make you invisible. (We’re constantly striving to feel wanted and accepted, but as we continue to look to others to bring us satisfaction, we find that the goal is always moving. We continue to try, but can never accomplish what we set out to do. This race makes us loose our uniqueness, and we become invisible, we’re no longer our true selves)
  • To find Peace we must let our Light shine through, and take the risk to let ourselves be seen. (Remembering that we all have a gift, something unique that we bring to the world, that is our light, our beacon. Be must be willing to be seen with our flaws, our shortcoming. While recognizing that we bring a talent, a gift to share with the Universe. As Brene Brown would say, we must be willing to be vulnerable)
  • Don’t let Wealth, Fame, Prestige … distract you from your true purpose in life, which is to let your Light shine through!!
  • There should be nothing more important in this world than you. (Learn to embrace and invest time into perfecting your gift)
  • Don’t let your EGO(the voice that tells you that you’re not good enough) fool you, know that you already possess everything you want, believe it and it will come to pass.
  • Stop worrying about how your dreams will come through, just believe, and don’t get caught up on what the vessel looks like. If you miss your chance, the Universe will find a way to bring it back around again.

With each passing day, it’s ammazing what we can find that helps define our path. I’m happy that I’m at a stage in my life that I’m able to learn about these things. After all in the end I’d like to know that I’ve lived my life, and that I’ll be satisfied with what I’ve done. This is just one small stem towards that future. Thank you Kathleen for first posting this, and for guiding others to find their light.

 

 

 

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I’m only as small as my view of my Life!

Earth from Moon

I feel as though this part of my journey through my life has come with some set-backs. I’ve been stuck looking at my life based on the things I would like to accomplish, I understand that we all have a purpose, and each person has a different role to play. I even understand and know that I’m right where I need to be, I’m here in this place because I’m needed here. I also accept that I’m here because I have the right resources and support to get through it. I believe that my best days are ahead, and that there is something amazing waiting for me ahead. Despite all of those positive thoughts, it doesn’t stop the thoughts about the things I’ve not accomplished from creeping into my mind. I will continue to move forward, taking it one day at a time. I decided to write today because I wanted to share the mental turmoil I seem to be struggling with. How do I re-frame where I am so that I can have a more positive outlook?

Rather than looking at my life from the perspective that I’m not married, have children, or own a home; after all those are some of the most important measures of success! I wanted to re-frame my view of my life, to see myself from a new view. This past weekend just about every conversation I’ve had, or blog post, or article I’veMilky Way read seems to point to one idea, sometimes you need to change your perspective. I was sharing some of my thoughts with my brother earlier in the week, he thought I was crazy for thinking the way I was. The way he saw it was that I’ve moved to a new City, found work to keep me here for 9 years, made new friends, and have began to fully understand who I am. For him, those are things worth being proud of. I did explain that I didn’t think I was a complete failure, it’s just sometimes negative thoughts seem to outweigh all the positive ones. By re-framing how we both saw the same situation, that got me thinking, and of-course I kept seeing that same message through-out the weekend. The one that resonates the most with me is from a TV show I saw today, COSMOS. In this show they explored our universe, and how it came to be. In the opening episode they talked quite a bit about our planet in relation to it’s position in the known Universe, and on the time continuum. When our existence is measured against such a vast back drop, we seem quite small. One of the concepts they spoke about that really got me thinking was from a Roman Poet Lucretius Carus; he suggested what was a revolutionary thought for his time. The universe can be viewed as being infinite, or it’s only has big we can see. He suggests that what we see is a kind of a wall that our arrow hits, and if we were to climb over that wall, our arrow would be shot off into infinity, or into another wall; then the process repeats itself.

Perhaps I’m at that wall right now, so when I climb over it, I could either go on into infinity, or come to face another wall. By looking at where I am as a wall, instead of being blocked by it, why not climb over it and see what lies ahead. That got me thinking of how we perceive happiness, most people think that once they’re married, have kids, or own a home, they will be happy. The reality is that once you’ve gained those things, you find that you have another wall to climb and peer over. In life there’s never a point where you’ve reached a destination in happiness, then you never have to face unhappiness again. What life has thought us is that happiness is in each moment, and we have to work to maintain it. I’m not satisfied with my life right now, so I should work to getting that satisfaction. There will be days when things are great, and there will be days when I struggle. Instead of coming up to a wall and just giving up, I have to climb over it, and see what lies ahead. With each new discovery, a wonderful new undiscovered world lies ahead.

As I got away from negative thoughts and started thinking more positively, I noticed a subtle change. I didn’t feel tense, angry or frustrated. There was a calming uplifting feeling, my muscles were less tense, and I felt this amazing happy feeling from deep within. Thinking positively had a healthy relaxing feeling on me, I din’t feel stressed and tense anymore. So aside from seeming crazy and annoying to people because you’re happy and don’t let negative thoughts get you down, thinking positive seemed to have a healthy effect. I understand that this is not a revolutionary thought by any stretch of the imagination; but for me it’s an acceptance of it’s benefits for me. What about you, how can changing your perspective help in your life? Are you viewing where you are as just from our solar system, perhaps you should be thinking bigger, maybe you should be looking at it from the Galaxy point of view. How can changing your perspective bring positive, and calming feelings to your life?

How Fear and Shame has made me feel like a Failure!

Shame

It seems as though it’s been a few years ago since I last served in the Marines, but the reality is that it’s been almost 7 years. I’ve accomplished a lot, but I’ve also not accomplished what I thought I should have by now. For some time now I’ve felt stuck, like I’m living someone else’s life, and that I can’t seem to get free. Last year has been a year of great personal growth, and I feel as though this year will be even better. In-spite of great personal growth, I’ve still felt that I’m not living up to all that I should be.  I’ve adapted a new mantra for my life going forward, be vulnerable, live with intention, and don’t take things personally. I think the biggest hurdle of that will be the vulnerability part, I still have to overcome many societal, personal, and family norms if I’m to triumph over that one. I’ve come across a writer/researcher/academic who has devoted many years to studying vulnerability, and her work has shed a lot of new light on this subject. If you’ve never heard of Brene Brown, her TED Talk “The Power of Vulnerability” is a great way to be introduced to her work. I was looking for a book for a friend a few weeks ago and came across Daring Greatly, it’s one of several books written by Brene Brown. For the first time I’m beginning to feel as though the layers of the onion are finally starting to be revealed.

There was a movie from the 80’s Gremlins, where these little creatures wreaked havoc on a small town. Although it’s been decades since this movie came out, the term Gremlins is synonymous with something wreaking havoc. For me the more I read Daring Greatly, the more I think that fear of failure and the shame of feeling like I’m not enough, is something that’s holding me back. In her book, Brene Brown talks about how men and women handle shame differently. While I understand that this could be a bit of confirmation bias, I still feel as though without facing these two “gremlins”, it will be hard for me to continue the personal growth I’ve started last year. Without shedding light on these gremlins, I feel as though I may sabotage any progress I’ve made so far.

So what do I have to feel ashamed of? As a male we are told many things, be brave, be strong, don’t be weak, don’t show emotions, you’re supposed to be a provider etc. Not to mention the pressure families put on us, in my culture having children is always a Shame on yousign of prosperity, even if you don’t have a place to put those children, just having them seems to trump everything else. A close second to children, is being married; at least kids should be on the way soon. Then at the least if you’re not married or have kids, having a “good job” and being a “good provider” is an ok substitute for third. While I’m not going to get into why just looking at those things aren’t a healthy way to measure your life; I will admit that I don’t fit any of those criteria. I’ve always seen myself as a rebel and trend setter when it comes to those things, but that hasn’t stopped the questions from family members. After reflecting about it, I’ve realized that not having a secure job for the past 7 years since the Marines, is a pressure that I put on myself. I know that taking 4 years out of that time to go to school is a great use of my time, however it doesn’t stop me from thinking that I should have more. Thinking about those things has led to a feeling of shame, although it’s not at the forefront of my thoughts; I think that it’s the reason why I feel stuck.

Despite my optimism and that I have faith and believe that I’ll get through this, that doesn’t stop the fear from creeping into my thoughts; what if I’m wrong and I never find a “good job”? What if I never get married, or have children? What if what I’ve accomplished is as far as I’ll ever go? What if …? The societal, personal, and family pressures to be successful plagues all of us. Like many others I’m struggling with these things. Despite these burning questions though, I know that I have to wake up each day, and take it one step at a time. So what if I’m not married, being married is the easy part, maintaining a healthy relationship for the rest of your lives is the hard part. So what if I don’t have children, many parents raise their children to be Emotionally unhealthy, or even dysfunctional adults. So what if I don’t have a “good job”, many people who do never spend time enjoying life, or worse yet don’t spend it with their families. I’m at a point where I’m aware of the negative impacts we can have even if we have those things, that knowledge will make me better equipped when I do have those things.

Fear and shame effects ALL of us, we all struggle with it in some form. However we don’t have to let it control our lives, left to grow, shame can make us feel 10 times smaller than we are. Shame can stop us from living fuller happier lives, it can stop us from ever actualizing our full potential. Brene Brown suggests we build up our shame resilience, her research has found that as we look shame in the face and call it out, it’s power on us weakens. As we live each day with intention, being vulnerable to show our real selves; we are able to live more wholeheartedly. So what if you’re ashamed of the way you look, feel, or your education. Einstein didn’t let his look stunt his creativity. Steve Jobs never graduated college; his education didn’t hamper him from creating Apple. To fear and shame I say SO WHAT! I’ve been writing less because of some criticism I got a few weeks back, I allowed someone else’s fears about themselves to influence how I felt about myself. I started writing to show others that they’re not alone in some of their feelings. I don’t write because I’m looking for recognition, or fame; I would have required that people pay me to read my posts if that was the case. We all navigate this world in our little bubbles, and the one thing that’s fundamental is that we all want to feel understood. So I’m saying I hear you, I too feel shame and I’m afraid. To help in overcoming shame, Brene suggests you speak to someone who you trust. I know I’m going out on a limb here and sharing my story with everyone, but I’ll also be asking questions from those close to me. I should mentions also, only tell your story to someone who has shown they are capable of being trusted, if they’ve betrayed your trust before, you probably don’t want them to know you’re ashamed, just saying!

With each day that passes, I grow stronger, and more courageous. I’m confident that I’ll make it, but my life isn’t about the stuff I have at the end of it, it’s about what I do with my time, the people I influence, and those I’m able to help accomplish positive changes. Oh and for the critics I’ll leave you with this gem from Brene Brown:

“If you’re not in the arena with the rest of us, fighting and getting your ass kicked on occasion, I’m not interested in your feedback.”

What’s your Mix Tape!!!

Mix Tapes

 

If you’re wondering if it’s some kind of Flashback Tuesday, no it’s not. I’ve heard this specific topic repeated several times on the Radio, and thought Id’ share it. While listening to K-Love a few weeks ago, one of the contributors Jud Wilhite spoke about some of the thoughts that run rampant in our heads. Without telling my age, I remember when I’d listen to my music via a Tape Player, no not a CD, no not an MP3 player, or even via smart phone. There was a time when you’d have to listen to music via a tape, and would have to fast-forward to get to your specific song, there was not skipping and going straight to the next song. Not to stay trapped in memory lane, but that reminded me of the most important indicator of a great relationship, or that you wanted a relationship, giving someone a mix-tape. It seems silly and cheesy in today’s standards, but a mix-tape was a window into who you were, it was a compilation of the best music. It gave you something to talk about, and it also let you know in an instant if you were meant to be; if your love interest didn’t like your favorite tunes, how could you ever be together?

Jud highlighted something very important, our mix-tape showed who we were on the inside. It was also a great way to pick ourselves up when something bad happened; we could lock ourselves away from the bad world, and we could heal our soul through the rhythmic tunes. A mix-tape wasn’t just any list of songs randomly strewn together, it was the best of the best, our most favorite tunes. You didn’t just give a mix-tape to anyone either, that was reserved for those closest to us; those in our inner inner circle! If you were like me, you knew ever line of every tune in each mix-tape, it was your spiritual guide. There was a tape for each mood, but most importantly it was supposed to make you feel better, this was the message you told yourself over and over. Well fast forward to today, tape players are long gone; wow I can’t believe its over 15 years ago! Sure we have instant access to music anytime we want, and our library is limitless. You have access to any type of genre on something smaller than our old tape player, with much more capabilities. So ask yourself, when you need to feel good, what are you listening to, what is the voice in your head telling you, what’s the best of you?

If you’re like me, although I’m relatively positive person, I still struggle to tune out the loud “you can’t …” voice, and instead listen to the more quiet one, the one that picks you up after you’ve fallen, or the one who tells you you’re capable of more than you give yourself credit for. Just as you played your old mix-tape over and over, what thoughts are playing over and over in your head. Do you hear:

I’m not good enough …

I’m not skinny enough …

I’m not smart enough …

I don’t deserve …

Well it’s time to bring back the old mix-tape, time to play those positive encouraging tunes, the best of the best you have to offer. I’t s time to stop letting the loudest voice captivate our thoughts, especially if it’s the “you’re not …” It’s time to surround ourselves with positive and encouraging thoughts and people, the things that won’t criticize us when we’re down, but instead say “so what if you fell down, everyone falls down. Now let’s figure out how to pick you back up.” It’s time to surround ourselves with love, patience, mercy, hope, and positive encouragement. Yes the world is filled with all kinds of negative things, but do they have also come from our own heads?

Miracles!! Gabby B. Style

Gabby B

“A Miracle isn’t getting your way. A Miracle comes when you get out of YOUR way” – Gabrielle Bernstein.

There are so many things to tie up my time in any given day. This reminds me to stay centered, I will not allow my past mistakes and hurt to overwhelm my thoughts today. Today I will choose to be present, to be happy with where I am, and to let life take it’s journey. My faith is strong and I know things will work out, I’m confident that I will do and be just where I need to be. Even in this moment, I’m here I’m present. I’ll do my best to get out of MY way today!