Controlling Anger — Before It Controls You
“I took a deep breath and listened to the old brag of my heart: I am, I am, I am.”
— Sylvia Plath, The Bell Jar
Inside Out is a funny, witty, and clever movie portraying the role of human emotions in a very touching sensible story. The story is about a life of a girl who is facing a significant transition in her life. The core emotions of human beings are Joy, Sadness, Anger, Fear, and Disgust. These emotions are learned emotions; these emotions exhibit themselves in one’s life based on one’s experiences and learning in relationships. Anger is one of the five emotions controlling Riley Andersen’s mind. He lives in her brain and works with the other emotions.
When Joy and Sadness literally get lost in Riley’s mind, he and the others have to keep Riley’s head on straight until they get home. Next to Joy, he may be the most abrasive to Sadness. Anger is introduced when Mr. Andersen tells a young Riley that she can’t have dessert if she doesn’t eat her broccoli. He is enraged but calms down when Riley’s dad says that the broccoli is an airplane. When Riley and her family move to San Francisco, Anger, along with the other emotions, is disappointed when he sees their new home and creates some negative memories. He lightens up when Joy starts coming up with ideas on how to decorate the place but is infuriated when they find out that the moving van with all of their belongings hasn’t arrived yet
Of all negative feelings people can experience, anger is probably the most common everywhere. We live and see a society of millions of angry people, we see it on television, parents experience it with their two year old, with people shooting innocent people for not reason, with teenagers, I know of many siblings who have held anger for years because of an ill treatment done to them by a member of their family. Anger is demonstrated in every corner we turn, we see it on our streets through the graffiti drawn on city buildings and businesses, we hear on the radio through the music sang, we see it on riots, on demonstrations and wars in Syria, in places where hurricanes and other natural disasters have hit.
What anger management professionals tell us is that anger has a personal dimension, it can be the fire that burn inside us and when provoked it cab lead to more damage, it is a flicker of fire that can destroy an entire with one strike. We all get angry, about things that are unfair or when things don’t go the way we expect, but here I want to engage us in a discourse to talk about that explosive anger that overwhelms every bodily vein. Where your mind seems unable to focus, where nothing exists except the pressure waiting to explode. This is the anger that all of have experienced at one time or another. It’s a hard feeling.
I remember having this episodic anger one Sunday afternoon when I was about 14 years old or so, back in Kenya. I was fixing our family bicycle, which was the one mode we had for the extended family of sixteen children, and I needed a screwdriver to complete a task. I asked my younger brother Isaac to get it for me. He refused or was slow to get it for me, as the older brother in my family it is expected that when you send a younger child they should do what you ask them to do without any question. I was very angry with my brother for refusing or delaying to follow my orders, in great anger I took a log and threw it at him. He ducked it and ran away. Whenever I get flashbacks of that incident I feel bad for my immaturity at the time, I would have injured or even worse I would have killed my brother just for refusing or delaying to follow my orders. In that moment I was allowing my outburst emotions to control my destiny, to control my thought process for no reason. I have since changed and I now act better in similar situation.
I have learnt that anger is an extremely powerful emotion and if you feed on it frequently others will avoid you like the plague. On the other hand, if you keep it bottled up inside and you become a pressure cooker that will inevitably blow its top leading to actions that you will later regret. Here, I would like share some examples where anger went out of control:On July 5, 2000, a hockey scrimmage took place at the Burbank Ice Arena in Reading, Massachusetts. It was a scrimmage for 10-12 year old boys. Michael Costin’s three sons were playing on one team and Thomas Junta’s son was on the opposing team. It was a scrimmage, it didn’t even count, but the events that transpired radically changed two families. The two men got into a scuffle during the game because of a disagreement they had over the roughness of play by the boys. Following the scrimmage Mr. Junta and Mr. Costin got into it again and Mr. Costin was beaten to death. Today, Thomas Junta is sitting in prison while Michael Costin’s sons are left without a daddy. As we can see from this case, violence comes from anger and must be defused in a healthy manner. Otherwise, coupled with daily stress and occasional relational problem, a sense of rage would plant deep inside one’s emotion and could explode anytime.
The question is not what if it explodes, but rather, when it explodes. For this reason, we are seeing more and more senseless murder-suicide cases recently. There is almost never a day gone by without hearing on the news of murder-suicide. It seems to be a thing to do to solve problems. I believe this is a reflection of people who are under extreme frustration and stress without having hope in sight.
Mental health professionals tell us when someone insults us or does something unkind to us, an internal formation of emotions is created in our consciousness. If you don’t know how to undo the internal knot of destructive and anger emotions and transform it to something positive, the knot of destructive and anger emotions will stay there for a long time. And the next time someone says something or does something to you of the same nature, that internal formation of emotions will grow stronger. As we add knots or blocks of pain, anger in us, our internal formation of emotions start to have the power to push us, to dictate our behaviour, to want to be released or explode.
After a while, it becomes very difficult for us to transform it to something positive, to undo the knots, and we cannot ease the constriction of this crystallized internal formation of emotions. It imprisons us, there is a poignant story about two Buddhist monks who encounter each other many years after being released from prison where they had been tortured. The first one asks, “Have you forgiven our captors?” The second one replies, “I will never forgive them! Never!” The first says, “Well, I guess they still have you in prison, don’t they?” This story vividly illustrates the tyranny of anger.
Every one of us has had episode of anger in our lives, we sometime feel a sense of threat, real or imagined, usually arises out of a perception of oppression, humiliation, injustice, physical danger or just a lack of control over our environment and circumstances. Guilt can also trigger anger. For example, if we know or feel that we’ve violated the law (biblical, moral, or civic), we may live under a cloud that God or the police who is about to get us. That lack of control over our circumstances can make us angry.
Of course, this territory of human psychology is not a recent discovery. People have always struggled with these issues. Rage exploded into murder in the very first family. So it may be useful to step out of 21st century thinking and literature and seek the more classic wisdom of the Bible on anger. For some of us those emotions no longer imprison us but for some we still have business that we need to take care of. With the practice of meditation, seeking help from others or mental health professionals or engaging yourself in intentional mindful reflection, we can undo these knots and experience transformation, healing and new insights into starting a new journey of hope. Anger is our built-in alarm system alerting us that something is wrong, out of harmony, off balance. Some event has clashed with our expectations, our beliefs or our spirit. We can gain vital information about ourselves and what we believe about the world when we look honestly at our anger. But when we react unconsciously, repress our anger or get caught up in it, it becomes counterproductive and negatively affects our health and relationships.
According to Brandt, when you’re able to tap into your anger — or any emotions — you’re able to examine the message, before you figure out how to respond. Feeling your feelings may not be easy. It may not come naturally to you — especially depending on your earlier experiences. However, you can learn to feel your emotions in safe and healthy ways and to process them in safe and healthy ways. Mindfulness is a great practice that everyone should focus on. When I became aware of the positive and negative emotions, it helped me get into touch with my inner most strengths and insecurities. When I recognized my strengths, I was able to grow those and build confidence. When I recognized my insecurities, I was able to self-soothe and face them head on to sort them out in a healthy way.
I have begun to be able to identify situations that induce anxiety, fear, stress, anger, etc. As soon as I feel any of those emotions coming along, I ask myself “what is causing this and what can I do to put this feeling at ease?” It can happen in a split second, so it is important to begin identifying trigger points and begin self-soothing right away. It is just as important to identify situations that bring joy. I know how hard it can be to take a situation for granted and not luxuriate in that moment. Getting into the practice of taking a moment to breathe in the air, listen to the sounds around you, taste the entirety of your food or drink will ensure that you are living in the moment. There is nothing more important than having gratitude for the things that you are doing in the NOW. In The Power of Now, Eckhart Tolle writes, “Accept — then act. Whatever the present moment contains, accept it as if you had chosen it. Always work with it, not against it.” And sometimes you are right to be angry because you are experiencing a true wrong. Then the problem is not the fact of getting angry, but how you express that anger. It’s not right for someone to tailgate you, recklessly and aggressively endangering you and your family. It’s not right when your spouse is indifferent or inconsiderate. It’s not right if your boss treats you unfairly or your child refuses to obey. It’s not right when you are abused or attacked. Anger has been given to us by God as the way to say, “That’s not right and that matters.” In our broken world, you will have many good reasons to be angry. But, because we are part of the broken world, we express our anger at true wrongs in the wrong way. We blow up. We get irritated. We gossip. We complain. We hold a grudge. We shut people out. We get even. We become embittered, cynical, hostile. Something really wrong happened … and we become really wrong in reaction.
By acknowledging our feelings and simply observing our thoughts, we are better able to make a conscious choice of how best to respond to life’s occasional frustrations. Remember that we were all born to be free; it’s a gift from God. We’re not to be free from responsibility, but free to be led by God’s Spirit. Any time our freedom is taken away or given away, we experience anger. Are we willing to go through whatever it takes to be free, or do you want to stay in the mess you’re in for the rest of your life? If you and I want to be free, just start doing what God wants you to do, one step at a time, and you’ll eventually walk out of your anger mess.
Brandt writes in her book Mindful Anger: A Pathway to Emotional Freedom writes, “Recognizing our true feelings makes it possible for us to change behaviours and situations that do not support us — leading to a more honest, satisfying life,” according to Brandt. Andrea Brandt grew up with anger. As she writes in her new book, we first learn anger at home. In her case it was from her parents, and primarily her mother. Her journey into healing began with a meltdown as a client in a group therapy session with her then-husband, followed by withdrawal and tears. She is an expert in anger from firsthand experience, but then we all have firsthand experience. What is different with Brandt is how she chose to handle it.
Brandt’s experience of overcoming her own histories of anger suppression does not follow this “slow and steady realization” model. One day in a group therapy session with her husband, she recounts, the anger she had kept deeply hidden all her life suddenly burst out of her in a screaming, purse-swinging fit of aggression, directed at another group member. The outburst, so uncharacteristic of this quiet, repressed woman, shocked everyone, including her, and ultimately led to a divorce. However the immediate effects of this fit of anger were the most personally telling and significant for Brandt’s evolution as a psychotherapist: she reports that days of sobbing, as she released the decades of hurt, were followed by a profound sense of freedom and lightness–a euphoria of post-expression liberation.
A clinical psychologist, Brandt came to realize that anger is our friend. It is there to try to protect us. The difficulty is when we act blindly and use the self-talk that we learned as a child. We act as soon as the emotion rises without really taking the time to listen to it and get to know it.
It was 8 PM. I was riding Toronto Subway from Spandina to Lansdowne. As reminisced through all that had taken place during the day, I started to notice some hand unusual hand movements of the woman sited across from me.
“Don’t be like your dad, ” she shouted at her three year old son, who was trying to free her grip, wanting to walk in the train.
“Men are monsters,” she shouted, at this time everyone in the train cargo was looking at her.
“Andrew, you are a monster.”
“No, ” her son freed himself, “you are a monster.” In no time the train was in Dufferin, which was her stop. She left quickly holding her son and shouting at him. As she left the cabin and as the doors closed I wondered why she has so much bitterness, I wondered why she repeatedly called men “monsters”. Could she had a divorce or separation. I empathized with her situation, whatever it was that she was going through it must have been a tough situation.
That night, as I thought through this incident, and wondered what could be that that made that woman to be so angry at men, I remembered how it is to be in the path of a monster. It was a time my father and I encountered with monster, a very hungry lion in the bushes of Kenya.
It was on a Saturday morning and the shimmering rays of of the sun hit ground with promises and peace. We had come to this part of Kenya to see our piece of land. We had camped for the night at an old school.
“This are hyena’s footsteps, ” my father told me as we started to walk into the bush where our land was supposed to be located, he lifted his hands towards Mount Kenya and asked the Creator to protect us.I had seen him say this kind of prayer a few times in my life, all those times were times when he and us were going through some difficulties; so I knew he too feared for what might happen.
As we walked further into the bushes we saw deers, giraffes, and herds of Zebras. All was calm but not for me, I feared a lot; I wondered why we had come here. I knew my dad had the best intentions to show me a piece of land that he had purchased but I could not reconcile why it had to be in wildlife environment. Without asking many questions I just followed him. For over an hour we went around the bushes, we could not spot the piece of land, then my dad remembered, “let us go that way,” he pointed,, we started to walk. After a hundred or so meters we saw a clearing and a water pond. As we walked towards the water pond we saw zebras, deer and antelopes have their mid-morning water drink, then my father stopped.
“Let us go that way, ” he changed direction, ” it should be somewhere near here.”
We walked a little further the direction he was walking, again he pointed.
“Our land is here, ” he stopped, thanked Creator again facing Mount Kenya.
We started to plant some trees that we had brought with us, then we started to hear roaring, loud roaring. We both knew it was a lion roaring, but thought it was either chasing a giraffe or just roaring to declare its territory, we continued with planting trees. But the roaring started to grow louder and louder, we could now hear it coming towards us.
“Let us ran, ” dad told me.
The more we ran the more we could hear its roaring getting louder, “I can stay behind to die….you are young you need to escape the danger, ” dad told me. As we ran through the bushes we met with a Saburu herder, he had a herd of cows crossing through the grassland. We raced around him, and past him. Then stopped to catch breath, at this time the roar was less, we continued to ran, until we could hear the sound anymore.
My escape from the lion encounter help me appreciate every opportunity I have been given to live, I see that I was given to see today for a reason.
My story has something to do with the story about the woman probably encountering a situation where she feels like encountering monster or monsters in her life, what we have in common is that monsters are real; they can be inform of persons, a challenge, an emotional experience….whatever it is it can make our lives overwhelmed and in some situations very, very painful and for some, they may feel feelings of numbness, apathy, depression, fear, loss of hope and death may seem as the most logic way to slay the monster.
But what I learnt that day when I encountered with the lion, and any day I have felt like another monster is out to kill me is that there is still a door of escape waiting to be opened.
In those moments when monsters are facing you, please remember:
- Acknowledge that failure is part of the process.Failure is a natural part of growth. When you struggle to make a project work the way you envisioned it, it is a sign that you are stretching yourself. If you were able to achieve every goal you set for yourself with little difficulty, that’s an indicator that you’re playing it safe, and not pushing yourself. Seth Godin, 18-time best-selling author notes, “the person who fails the most wins.” It’s not because failing is glamorous. It’s because each time something doesn’t work, you learn. Each failure will bring you closer to solving the problem you’re tackling. You gain insight into what resources are needed, what approaches work better than others, and in what areas of your plan are most vulnerable. As a result of this learning, you can tweak your plan of action, for better results the next time. James Dyson went through 5,127 failed prototypes of his vacuum cleaner over fifteen years before he got to the one that worked. It was prototype number 5,128 that launched his billion dollar technology company.
- Embrace who you are and all your humanness. Self-doubt plagues us because we desperately want to be somebody we’re not. I often want to be perfectly disciplined, for example, and when I’m not I come down hard on myself. The key, I’ve found, is to remind myself that although not perfect, the person I am is pretty darn great. I just need to embrace the reality that I’m not always as disciplined as I’d like to be. And I also need to remember that I have had many successes in my life. (Just like YOU.)
Let your emotions run their course. Breathe, stretch, curse, scream, cry, laugh, sing, meditate, exercise to release endorphins, read a book, punch your pillow, vent to a loved one, etc. Do whatever it is that you need to do in order to clear your mind. Take a deep breath and let out all emotions related to the setback. Refrain from bottling up your emotions. Trust me, I’ve been there one too many times and it has never resulted in anything good. I promise you’ll come out of this feeling a lot better.
- Let it go.You can choose to let it go and move on. The reality is that life is filled with peaks and valleys and we don’t know when we will experience the good times versus the bad times. Disappointments and setbacks are part of life and it really isn’t personal. It is important to get to acceptance fairly quickly because having negative thoughts about your experience will consume you. For me, it took many years of practice to just let things go. I would replay the negative thoughts over and over in my head often questioning each action I took. It was unhealthy and never solved anything. I learned falling into the negative thought spiral made it more challenging to move on from the situation. Now when I experience set backs, I know I have a choice to either take it personal or accept the experience, learn from it and move on.
- Remind yourself that everything in life is temporary.Your big breakthrough will come when you recognize that all your inadequacies, all your limitations, and all your failings, losses and setbacks, are only temporary. And once they pass in the real world, they’re prolonged existence is simply an artificial reality you cling to with your thoughts.
- Know that nothing is too hard for God.When faced with an enormous obstacle, it’s easy to fall into the error of believing that the obstacle may be bigger than God. Yet we know that’s not true in our hearts; however, our actions of unbelief and doubt reveal otherwise. We must stand firm in the faith that God is who He says He is—the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. Nothing is too difficult for our God to help us overcome.
- t’s not true in our hearts; however, our actions of unbelief and doubt reveal otherwise. We must stand firm in the faith that God is who He says He is—the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. Nothing is too difficult for our God to help us overcome.
- Find gratitude in the present moment.This always sounds at bit cliché – promoting gratitude as a universal solution – but the reason it’s always mentioned is because it works. Even after a loved one passes, the actual present reality of our lives without this loved one isn’t unbearable unless we compare it to the impossible fantasy of them still being alive. The reality is, we still have our own lives and our health and passions to explore… we still have other wonderful family members and friends who love us… and that’s just the start of things to be grateful for. Now, this reality isn’t always full of happiness – sometimes it has unpleasantness – but you can embrace that too, instead of wishing it matched up with a stressful fantasy.
What helps you persevere and bounce back from life’s setbacks? How do you motivate yourself through difficult situations on a daily basis? Leave a comment below and share your thoughts and insights?
Sharks by nature are loners, huge fish, have thousands of teeth. What we don’t often hear about is their intelligence, their thoughtful strategies in catching prey, and their patience in doing so; along with their highly developed senses allow it to detect prey from miles away.
Every day is composed of constant movement. No stopping is ever allowed. It is like people fear their movement is equivalent to their life. There are cars roaring at all hours of the day, even in the dead of night. The sound simply never stops, never falters. If one decides that they wish to stop and breathe for a minute, they are immediately deemed a failure and are cast out from society. They say that it is the survival of the fittest, even among a crowd of sharks.
Most of us have been advised at one time or another to choose our battles. We know it’s good advice, yet rarely stop and think about the criteria for passing up one battle and choosing to engage in another.
This famous saying is often not attributed to its rightful author, Sun Tzu. As a brilliant Chinese military strategist, Sun Tzu was a highly respected general of the vast ancient Chinese army.
He is known not only for his incredible ability to understand warfare and thereby gain an unprecedented level of victory on the battlefield, but also for his impact on Chinese history and culture that is evident even now. He was no less a legend in his own time than he is today.
Sun Tzu is widely accepted as the author of The Art of War, a book of military strategy renowned for it timeless influence on warfare throughout history, even though it was written during the 4th or 3rd Centuries BC.
For you and I in today’s worlds, choosing our battles wisely means to be selective of the problems, arguments, and confrontations that you get involved in. Instead of fighting every problem, you save your time only for the things that matter. This means fighting the most important battles and letting go of the rest.
It is important to keep in mind that retreating from an individual battle does not mean that you are surrendering or declaring defeat in the war. A battle is no more than that – one battle. To continue with the battlefield/war analogy, a battle is simply one skirmish; your ultimate objective is to win the war. Many a pawn has to be sacrificed in a chess match in order to capture your opponent’s king, which is ultimately all that matters in the overall scheme of things.
What are some of the reasons for choosing only the important battles?
- Not everything is important. Some things simply don’t matter in the long run. If you think about what matters 5, 10, even 20 years from now, it’s apparent that many of the things we worry about are small, and we should instead focus on the big important things.
- Accept what you can’t control. Trying to change something that you cannot control will lead to a lot of frustration and unhappiness. And you will never stop fighting those battles unless you can first accept the way things are. Namely, accept other people for who they are. Trying to change them will lead to a lot of wasted time and unhappiness.
- Do a cost-benefit analysis. In the investment world, cost-benefit analysis is a systematic approach to estimate the strengths and weaknesses of a business investment, so that you can determine if this investment is sound.When facing an impending battle, doing a cost-benefit analysis helps you decide if the battle is worth fighting. Ask yourself:
- Do the costs outweigh the benefits? If the answer is “yes,” it’s generally better to let go and move on.
- What are the odds of success? If the odds of success are very low, then it may be better to just move on as well.
You’re Not Perfect, Accept It, Never beat yourself up for making mistakes.This is life. It’s unpredictable. It makes no sense. Shit happens.When you try to be perfect, you’re always at war with yourself. You’re never at peace. Nothing is good enough.You will never get to enjoy life for what it is. Even though it makes no sense; there’s still enough beauty in life.You just have to take off your tunnel vision goggles and see it.
- Your beliefs aren’t necessarily someone else’s and that is alright. One of the first things that you can realize is that the beliefs that you have and the choices that you make aren’t necessarily going to be someone else’s first choice. The great thing about life is that everyone can have their own opinions. You wouldn’t want someone else forcing their beliefs and choices on you right? Yes so try not to do this to others. I have actually ruined many relationships that I have had trying to make others see my view too much.
- Life’s battles are endless but you don’t have to choose them all. With the tips above you can stop arguing as much and you can just be happy with the beliefs and the choices that you have made. You don’t have to prove yourself to anyone so you don’t have to worry anymore about trying. There are questions that you can ask yourself to see if the battle is worth arguing about or conversing about. Will it matter to your life if they agree with your or not? Will you change your mind if they don’t agree with you? The answer to both of these questions is probably no. If you can say no to these two questions then there is no need to make a big deal out of it.
- Go for win-win, not win-lose. Should you decide to pick the battle, work toward a win-win situation where both of you will emerge victorious.Some of you may be surprised by my suggestion. Why ‘win-win’ and not ‘win-lose’? Why help my opponent win? you may think. Even though I use “battle” as the analogy, I encourage you to think about your “opponent” as your ally, your friend. The reason is simple: When you have a mindset to squash others, you adopt a scarcity mindset that’s rooted in lack — where there must always be a winner and a loser, where there is a lack of opportunities for everyone.
Are You Choosing Your Battles wisely?
If you tend to face a lot of battles in life, use the tips above to separate the essential battles from the non-essential ones. Focus on the important battles and let go of the rest. This way, you focus your energy to win the big game of life.
In other words in all your battles, accept what you can’t control (the current situation with the car accident) so you can focus on what you can control (your future preparations for such a situation).
If you are starving but can’t find food you will feel hungry. The feeling of emptiness is like emotional hunger where you become hungry for a something that you can’t get. For example the feeling of emptiness related to loneliness results from needing an intimate relation without being able to find it. Depression is another one of the strongest reasons that can make you feel empty and the combination of both depression and emptiness can be really annoying.
The opposite of the feelings of emptiness is when you feel full. This kind of feelings comes when you find that you achieved most of your goals or that at least you are moving in the right direction towards reaching them.
What causes feelings of emptiness? No one knows for sure, and there may be more than one cause. A common reason you might feel empty is self-alienation—feeling like a stranger to yourself. This sensation develops over time, usually as a result of pushing away unwanted emotions.
Our emotions are an important aspect of our experience of ourselves and our quality of life, yet most of us have some degree of trouble allowing ourselves to have certain feelings. Anger is one emotion that many people try not to experience, for example.
What happens to our feelings when we refuse to acknowledge them? They stick around in the shadows of our minds, gumming up the emotional works and, eventually, cutting us off from ourselves altogether.
The result? We feel empty. We have a pulse, but we’re not really alive.
Feeling empty can be so anti-climactic, so dull, so silent – a place devoid of even the smallest motion. We are so (understandably) averse to feeling empty that we’ll do almost anything to fill ourselves up, even if we know it’s hurting us. Avoiding the feeling of emptiness is part of the reason so many people overeat, for example. “Comfort food” is not food that makes you feel energetic or lighter or cleansed, it’s food that makes you feel full.
We long to feel full, not empty.
What’s not said enough is that feeling empty at times is natural, normal, incredibly common and (dare I say) healthy. Particularly during times of transitions, feeling a sense of emptiness is par for the course — a signal of opportunity and a clear space for something meaningful to enter into your life.
What is the solution?
Understand if/when you feel “empty” its not really “empty” and that there is something actually there. You must first face it, see it, & admit it. Use your vocabulary to try to describe what this “emptiness” feels like. Once you have a few words that describe it, ask yourself, “Why do I feel this way?” I guarantee that the cause will be from a lack of love in some area of your life. Once you find the area of lack ask yourself, “did I or someone else cause this lack?” It could have been someone else who caused it; it could have been yourself, or both (whether the offense was real or perceived the pain it caused is still real to you so treat it as so).
We have now faced it so the next step is to apply forgiveness. If someone else caused the pain, forgive them. This doesn’t mean you now agree with or are now ok with what they did to you. Forgiving them is releasing the influence they have had in your life through this unforgiveness, bitterness, & resentment.
If you caused it receive forgiveness for yourself. Get rid of guilt, shame & condemnation & recognize your value once again. See that you are better than that & live like it. See your value & potential. Forgiveness brings freedom by releasing & erasing the hold that pain once had on you.
Like kids but don’t have any or yours are grown now?
Volunteering at a school during lunch breaks or going on field trips with schools might be an option. Most will require you to have some police security check but these are easy enough to obtain and you should have one anyway. If you are open to a little more commitment, go check out and see if a nearby daycare needs an art and craft person or an extra pair of hands for little day trips. Kids not your thing?
Do you like books?
When was the last time you visited your local library ? Reading? Learning about current and local events? Sitting in quiet open spaces and taking in new things? Libraries are a great source, still to this day, for workshops, reading, obviously, and meeting new people. Like minded people. Some libraries even have free classes, mostly for seniors, but you should check anyway. Don’t discount your library.
What’s your passion?
Painting? Photography? Music? What makes you come alive? Find it and do more of it. Leave the house if you have to and seek it out. Search your area for people who love the same thing or maybe even join, or start, a meet up group of like minded individuals. Perhaps there are already several in your area lost and looking, just like you. Most of these clubs are free to join as well. If equipment is needed, if you are just starting, most can be bought at ridiculously great prices at second stores. Fun doesn’t have to cost money.
Lastly, cultivate a lifestyle that releases life into yourself & others. For an example, If your “emptiness” is really depression due to failure & rejection begin to release hope, acceptance & victory. Your thoughts & words must become thoughts & words of hope, acceptance & victory. Your words will define your world. Speak encouraging & empowering words over yourself & others. Believe that you are worthy, valuable, full of potential & have much to give to others. Speak hope. Encourage others to believe that they are valuable, full of potential & to expect coming good.
In summary you:
Face it: admit the struggle, pain, and fault.
Erase it: give & receive forgiveness. &
Replace it: changing your thoughts & words to thoughts & words that release life.
Be filled with goodness instead of “emptiness”
Forgetting people’s names and unsightly sweat patches are among the most common faux pas that leave Britons blushing with embarrassment four times a day.
Tripping in public and getting food stuck between teeth are also humiliating moments that most try hard to avoid and one in seven say a relationship has ended because something embarrassing happened.
A study of 2,000 adults found that burping accidentally, stalling the car at traffic lights and having food on your face are among the top 50 most common moments that leave us red faced.
Terrible teeth: Discovering food stuck in between teeth is a common humiliation
Embarrassment is the uncomfortable feeling you get when you’ve done something which you think will make you look bad.
Embarrassment is a self-conscious emotion felt by individuals after they commit a social transgression and that transgression is exposed to others in the group. This is evolutionary advantageous for humans as social animals, because social standards and rules need to be constantly maintained for a social group to function efficiently. Embarrassment not only makes the individual feel negatively about violating the social norm, but it also initiates a series of action tendencies that facilitate repair of social damages caused by the transgression. For instance, you can be embarrassed when you start addressing someone and then realize you forgot their name. Or, when you are on a very busy train and accidentally touch a stranger in an inappropriate place. However, you do not necessarily have to do something bad or stupid to be embarrassed.
If you feel it far too often or find your experience of it disabling, that’s not because embarrassment is inherently bad; that’s likely because you have social anxiety, a deep fear of the perceptions of others and how they can harm you. Embarrassment on its own isn’t a massive problem, so don’t fear it: understand it.
In a word, she was embarrassed. While embarrassment might jangle your nerves, there are ways to muster up the mental and emotional strength to put it behind you and be better prepared for next time.
Here are a few tips to use when you find yourself in embarrassing moment:
- Ask yourself: “How important is it in the whole scheme of things?” “What harm is done, who will suffer? What’s the worst thing that can come of this?” “ Is it correctable?” An objective common sense realistic answer will free you to move on.
- I have had my share of embarrassing moments. I, like most people hate making mistakes. The high standards I have set for myself will never change, however I have adjusted my expectations of always being able to live up to them in some aspects of my life.
- If you embarrass yourself, get a jump on it. Defuse the awkwardness by addressing it before someone else does. A self-deprecating joke is a sure tactic, but if you’re too flustered to be witty, default to an immediate “oops” or “sorry” statement (“Oops, that was embarrassing!” “Sorry about that — obviously not what I meant to do.”) Smile and move on.
- If someone else embarrasses you, go to your moment place. It takes a lot of control, but don’t get defensive. The more neutral your reaction, the less power you give up — and the more obvious it will be that you don’t deserve to be treated that way.
- Think from an outside perspective: Seeing the wider picture can help you to judge whether or not the wrongs you committed are ones which truly trap you into feeling embarrassed. Embarrassment is sometimes (not always) unnecessary, and you need not live your life as prisoner to it. To see whether this is true, try these tricks to open up your perspective on the issue.
- It’s a common mistake: Seeing the wider story can often reveal that yours is a mistake made by many, and this can act as a great starting point for finding the courage to uncover your embarrassment or shame to others.
- Who’s the judge: Looking at the issue from outside yourself can help you examine the standards by which you are judging your mistake. Every mistake is simply a failure to live up to a set of expectations you have for yourself, or that others have for you. It is important to discover who you believe you are disappointing, what the rules were that you broke, as well as what high standards you did not achieve.
What you and I need to remember is that everyone suffers from shame or embarrassment in their lives. When you keep in mind these feelings are universal, there is no longer any reason to hide.
When the abstract paintings of Jackson Pollock were first introduced people said, that’s not art. It’s too weird, too chaotic.
Everyone hated his work. No one would buy it.
“What a mess,” they said. “My two year old could do that.” Then, one day art collector Peggy Guggenheim looked at a painting and said,
“Not a mess, people. You’re looking at a masterpiece.”
In 2006 one of Pollock’s paintings sold for $ 140,000,000.
We are all like Pollock’s paintings , a pile of mess or a masterpieces to the people we meet with. Those who see us as mess hate us but those who see our mess as masterpieces are happy to be with us, they are willing to do anything to have us in their circles.
To be honest with you, everyone is flawed. I find it sad when people are surprised or angry at celebrities when their famous celebrities make a mess, we forget that they too are human beings like us.
We live in a society that perpetuates perfection. We see celebrities with their perfect lives and their perfect looks. We look at our neighbors and think that their job, house, or relationship is perfect. We strive for that perfection. We envy that perfection. Then we become upset when such perfection is out of reach.
Just to be honest with you, you and I are struggling with this realm of wanting to be perfect and yet we feel flawed up. It’s the truth for me and the truth for you – for all of us. Every one of us have these competing voices in our heads. The voice that says that “I am a masterpiece” and the one that says “I am a mess”, “I am a loser.” Sadly, the the voice that says “I am a messed up” is usually the loudest voice we hear. That “mess” voice has been trained and perfected over many years of self-doubt, criticism, mistakes, etc. Sometimes that voice was fed by someone we thought was a friend, a well-meaning but misinformed family member, teacher, sibling, you name it. At times, that voice gets so loud and so big that we can’t hear anything else. The “masterpiece” voice has been stifled and disjointed. But here’s the truth: God sees you and me as an absolute work of art. That is so hard for me to process. I can see all sorts of beautiful qualities in those around me, but I have the hardest time accepting it for myself. God is the one that speaks those powerful, loving words into your heart. He is the one that makes your amazing qualities visible to those around you so that they can see them too.
Interestingly the Bible is full of people who felt “messed up” like we do. Adam and Eve felt that they were not good enough as they were, they felt a miss and insecure when confronted by Satan; Abraham, the forefather of faith, let other men walk off with his wife on two different occasions. (Genesis 12 and 20);Elijah himself ran for his safety after performing a miracle and hid in a brook to die, he felt messed up; Job, supposedly a contemporary of Abraham and the epitome of faith, suffered from the nagging of a faithless wife. (Job 2:9);Moses, the humblest man on the face of the earth (Numbers 12:13), had a very serious problem with his temper (Exodus 2, 32:19; Numbers 20:11); Solomon, the wisest man in the world, was arguably the world’s greatest sex addict with 1,000 sexual partners. (1 Kings 11). I can go on giving examples about heros in the Bible who messed up in their lives. This illustrates lives of people who felt messed up, lives of people like these tell us that our thoughts and words have the power to make or break our future stories. We have the power to either accept that future or measure it with what we believe we are.
A few years back I listened to Watoto Choir, Watoto Choir for those who don’t know them are a Christian children choir from Uganda. They performed a titled “I am not forsaken”. The song told a story of kids who had suffered from lots of challenges yet they were hopeful of their future. As I sat there and watched these children sing I was reminded in a very personal way that I too was not forgotten and that God knew my name. He knew where I was, and He wanted me. As a Kenyan who grew up in poverty I know that it took total conviction and change of heart to see and believe on being masterpieces. In their humble states it is easier to feel self pity and see their “messed up “ stories than to believe that their maker is transforming them to be masterpieces. How do you feel today? Do you feel “messed up” or do feel you are being transformed to be a masterpiece?
Embracing your flaws or feelings of being a “mess”, with your head high is not easy. I have listed some tips that are helpful to us all in this journey of growing towards becoming masterpieces:
#1 love yourself, your whole self
We often associate what is a mess in our lives with physical imperfections, but no matter type think you are, you cannot let it consume your soul. Embracing that you are human, a flawed human, who is not and will never be perfect is the first step to truly loving yourself—your WHOLE self. Despite all of it, you are still beautiful, inside and out. Never forget that.
#2 self-awareness is very important
Being in tune with your emotions and physical being is key. Understanding the way that you are has an effect on others and becoming more aware helps you personally and professionally, as well as helps you identify how you can grow and improve.
#3 how you feel about yourself affects your relationships
Growing up in Kenya I learnt at vet early age that I had please others in order to get their attention or support. I made sure that my dad, teachers and others were happy with me. This very good for me because I seen as a very well behaved young man, and sometimes I got favoured. But on other hand it was not always s good for me because I had always please people, even when it meant it cost me more to do what they wanted. This changed after I had lived in Canada for a few years. My first job was a live-in caregiver in a group home. Soon after employment a few of my co-workers quit their jobs. That meant I was left alone to take care of four persons with disabilities. It was very tough juggling cooking, complete care for the ones on wheelchairs and cleaning. After a few months of doing this I could not do it anymore. I spoke with my manager requesting for additional support. At first my manager could not believe that I was brave to be asking for support. But I did not relent, I was tired. The agency offered me some respite support.
Since that time I have learnt that You cannot fully love someone else until you love yourself. If you don’t love yourself, your relationships will suffer. Plus, those who are most comfortable with who they are tend to exhibit more confidence and have more productive relationships, instead of those spent as an uphill battle against your insecurities.
#4 Someone else may love your “mess”.
You and I have people out there who appreciate us just as we are. These people have been set up by the Creator to be our anchors. Occasionally I meet with people who come to my life wanting to commit suicide. Some of the reasons why they want to do so is because they feel they have no one in their lives who care about them. As I journey with them through their pain they realize that they have so much to given and that their lives were meant for greatness.
Like these friends who come to our lives at their point of need, you and I deserve to be loved for our whole selves—including our flaws, and not despite them. Like I’ve mentioned, your flaws are what make you the person that you are and you wouldn’t be that person without them. Embrace who you are and surround yourself with people who embrace you, too.
#5 your insecurities will only hold you back
Your insecurities can stop you from reaching your full potential. You’ll never pursue your dreams if you’re constantly being held back by the “bad things” about yourself. In order to move forward, you have to accept your flaws. Of course you can do things to better them or change them, but you can’t do that until you embrace them.
#6 because focusing on what’s wrong means you miss what’s right
We are so distracted by what’s wrong that we forget to acknowledge what’s right. If you spend all of your time obsessing over the negatives, you’ll miss all the good stuff. Just because you are one thing doesn’t mean it overpowers all the good about you. That’s what matters.
Above all remember God created you as a masterpiece, that is the bottom line.
In January 2018, Revlon launched its new Live Boldly campaign in New York City, introducing four new Global Ambassadors. Gal Gadot. Ashley Graham, Adwoa Aboah, Imaan Hammam and Raquel Zimmermann were chosen to represent Revlon’s new campaign platform because they embodied what it is to “Live Boldly.”
As a top model and advocate, Graham has used her celebrity voice to challenge conventional perceptions and inspire women everywhere. Her optimism, compassion and strength have changed the industry’s perspective by creating a more inclusive definition of beauty. While “live boldly” is geared towards building optimism among women I feel that the message is relevant to us all. We are all in search for the positivism and optimism, yearning for strength that can or will profell us to that next new level
The boldest people in our world sometimes or most of the time go beyond call of duty. Any scan of the news in our different world we find bold voices who are testing boundaries or are using their power to bring hope and ingenuity to the world around them. True “bold makers” and “bold livers” don’t only step out with strong opinions and conviction, but they are led by their deep compassion for others and a true desire for peace and prosperity. Our world desperately needs these kinds of people today. Bold people who engage the needs of our day with conviction and compassion.
I remember when I was appointed to implement Jordan’s Principle in the Province of Manitoba,Canada. This is an initiative to facilitate services for First Nations children living on and off reserve. The opportunities were there before us, we knew we had over 3000 children needing services that ranged from respite, Occupational Therapy, Mental Health etc, and the funding was to make it happen was available. The issue we had was that there were people who had lived in the old way of doing business; we had too many people thinking inside the box, wanting us to hold the Province of Manitoba accountable first, wanting us to use the conventional way of business. As the leader, I knew we had to do business differently; we had to always put children’s needs at the center. This is a skill I learnt in my Nursing and Lean Management. I learnt that when you put the interests of the customer at the center then it is up to the customer to pull the services they want. The customer become the determining factor.
As I visited the different First Nations I used a “it is a new day for our children ” mantra. I told communities to send their Jordan’s Principle dream. We made it simple, I would say that the proposal should not be more than two pages. I asked communities to think outside the box. Why was I doing this? I wanted to give First Nations leaders opportunity to drive the process. I learnt early on in my life in Kenya that when people own their dreams and destiny they feel proud of their journey and calling. Having worked with First Nations for many years I have learnt that winning their trust is more important that the activity that I want them to complete. This is very much similar to my Kenyan background. If you want to see great outcomes working with us you have to win our trust. For us trust means allowing us to be actively involved in what we are doing together. I should explain that actively has a different meaning than the conventional way of thinking. Actively for us and I believe it apply the same for First Nations it means, we are part of the decision making and nothing gets done without us, we feel needed in the process. This is what we had to do with the Jordan’s Principle here in Manitoba. This was unlike how government work. Government’s process include lots of consultations but for us we had to turn tables upside down. We wanted the First Nations to tell us where they wanted to go. We had to work boldly because we were expected to stay within the guidelines of Jordan’s Principle but yet not box ourselves.
Three years now, we had been able to mobilize lots of services to all 63 First Nation communities in Manitoba. We have all 63 First Nations leading in First Nations and Children centred services. We are very proud of the many children and families receiving services close to their home. This could not be accomplished within three short years without lots of collaborations and championing among all partners. We had to live and act boldly.
Here are a few of the ways I try, each and every day, to live as boldly as possible:
- Love yourself – How do you show love for yourself? Do you look in the mirror every morning and wish that you looked younger, thinner, taller? If so, you’re not loving yourself. Take time to think about the things that you love about yourself, but dig deep. Do not let other people’s negative comments about you or your dreams pollute your image or your goals, you are the best you have. Remember, that these negative comments were likely spoken by people who also failed and probably projecting their contempt onto you. When you love, respect and believe in yourself you learn to shut out those who do not treat you with respect. So every day make sure you remind yourself that you love the person you are and that you believe in yourself. I do this everyday myself, it is easier to see my black colour when I am white co-workers and friends feel intimidated or unworthy but I don’t all those feelings or thoughts enter into my mind and heart. I boldly walk and talk knowing who I am, I am strong and courageous, I have a strong mission and vision and I can everything given to me that is within my scope and capacity.
- Take risks – I don’t mean start jumping out of airplanes (although you can if that’s what you really want to do). Try something new and different, volunteer with programs in your neighbourhood and abroad . Taking any kind of risk, whether it be physical or creative, builds self-confidence, it allows s to give back to others and it sometimes lead to opening up new opportunities for you and others.
- Conquer fear – While I certainly do not support taking unnecessary risks, tackling our fears leads to greater self-confidence and happiness. Try to suppress the constant voice inside you telling you what could happen. Focus on the moment and not on the what if’s. Take small steps, at first everything might feel overwhelming but with time everything becomes clear.
- Surround yourself with positive-thinking people – It is almost impossible to live boldly when you are constantly surrounded by people who see the negative in everything. Cut those people loose, if you can, or at the very least keep contact with them to a minimum. Who knows, maybe your positive outlook and greater self-confidence will eventually rub off on some of those who always see glass half full. We need to look for those people who make our hearts want more because there is more to life than looking at what did not work.
You were born to change the world and the moment you were born you did just that! Over time life seems to get many of us in this looping living were we become like a hamster on a wheel never getting anywhere but feeling exhausted Remember you are a living miracle go live fully.
Most of us go to our graves with our music still inside us, unplayed. —Oliver Wendell Holmes
Your are where you are for a greater purpose than yourself. Whether you’re an entrepreneur, counselor, doctor, nurse, a call center rep or a student, your purpose is your brand, your influence and you innate drive to achieve, the magic that makes you tick. It’s not what you do, it’s how you do your job and why—the strengths and passions you bring to the table no matter where you’re seated. Although you may express your purpose in different ways in different contexts, it’s what everyone close to you recognizes as uniquely you and would miss most if you were gone.
How to find the drive, the magic or in other words-the purpose:
Discovering your Purpose requires you to continuously Believe in yourself, Discover yourself and Deploy yourself to serve others:
- BELIEVE – You must believe your innate drive, and magic into existence. Believe you have a Purpose. Believe in your Purpose. Believe in the source of your Purpose. Believe in yourself and something bigger than yourself.
- DISCOVER – The ultimate discovery experience requires a deep encounter with your inner self and a spiritual connection with your Creator. Learn more about how your abilities, attitudes, needs and experiences influence your purpose-living experience with our Purpose.
- DEPLOY – The most fulfilling part of your purpose-journey is when you bring the discoveries of yourself into effective action. Reaching this point means you have enough awareness of yourself and your Purpose to operate in it. You have agility in your attitude to continuously look for new ways to discover, connect, grow and contribute as a daily practice for purposeful-living.
Do this over and over again, blocking out all the negative thoughts and distractions, believe in your new day and new moments until you have taken those positive thoughts and made them into a reality. You have the power to change the world; you have no excuse for not being able to change yourself and impacting others’ lives.
Philip Island, in Victoria Australia, plays host to one of the greatest nature experiences possible. On the shores of Philip Island are the burrows of thousands upon thousands of fairy penguins, extraordinarily cute little birds that stand only 30cm or so tall. Every morning the adult penguins head out to sea to catch fish. At the end of the day they return to land to bring back food for their chicks. Watching them get from the water to their burrows is both funny and exhilarating. The penguins surf in on the waves, then gather in groups at the water’s edge. Their burrows are 100 metres or so away, with the open space of the sandy beach between them. All of a sudden a group of penguins will take off, waddling as fast as their little legs will carry them across the beach. But then, having got 10 or 20 metres they’ll suddenly turn around and waddle back to the water. They wait, then try again. One group makes it, but another performs this strange ritual of turning back. And on it goes, through the dying light of day, until finally the penguins have all crossed the beach and met their chicks in their burrows.
What’s going on? Why the strange stop-start-return ritual? The answer’s quite simple. At sea the birds are fast swimmers, able to dive deep. At sea they’re safe from predators such as eagles and hawks and dogs and cats. In their burrows their safe below ground. But on the open beach they’re vulnerable and exposed. On the beach they can only waddle slowly and are easy pickings for predators. And so, as they cross the beach, the moment they see a shadow or something out of the corner of their eye, they turn back and race for the safety of the water.
It seems that we humans are a lot like those fairy penguins. When confronted with challenging situations we find ourselves like the penguins standing at the water’s edge. We know where we’ve got to go, we know we’ve got to get across that beach to get back to the burrow, but it can be so terrifying. When we step out of the water and start waddling across the beach we leave our safety zone behind, we’re in no-man’s land where it’s dangerous, uncertain and where we’re vulnerable. Yet to get to the burrow we must leave the safety zone behind and strike out into the danger zone.
Michael Jordan is widely considered to be one of the greatest basketball players of all time. And yet, he was cut from his high school basketball team because his coach didn’t think he had enough skill.Warren Buffet, one of the world’s richest and most successful businessmen, was rejected by Harvard University. Richard Branson, owner of the Virgin empire, is a high-school dropout.
Most of us will stumble and fall in life. Doors will get slammed in our faces, and we might make some bad decisions. But imagine if Michael Jordan had given up on his dream to play basketball when he was cut from that team. Imagine if Richard Branson had listened to the people who told him he’d never do anything worthwhile without a high-school diploma.
Think of the opportunities you’ll miss if you let your failures stop you.
It’s only natural to want to avoid the thing or situation you fear. But when it comes to conquering phobias, facing your fears is the key. While avoidance may make you feel better in the short-term, it prevents you from learning that your phobia may not be as frightening or overwhelming as you think. You never get the chance to learn how to cope with your fears and experience control over the situation. As a result, the phobia becomes increasingly scarier and more daunting in your mind.
The most effective way to overcome a phobia is by gradually and repeatedly exposing yourself to what you fear in a safe and controlled way. During this exposure process, you’ll learn to ride out the anxiety and fear until it inevitably passes. Through repeated experiences facing your fear, you’ll begin to realize that the worst isn’t going to happen; you’re not going to die or “lose it.” With each exposure, you’ll feel more confident and in control. The phobia begins to lose its power.
It’s important to begin with a situation that you can handle, and work your way up from there, building your confidence and coping skills as you move up the “fear ladder.”
Make a list. Make a list of the frightening situations related to your phobia. If you’re afraid of flying, your list (in addition to the obvious, such as taking a flight or getting through takeoff) might include booking your ticket, packing your suitcase, driving to the airport, watching planes take off and land, going through security, boarding the plane, and listening to the flight attendant present the safety instructions.
Build your fear ladder. Arrange the items on your list from the least scary to the most scary. The first step should make you slightly anxious, but not so frightened that you’re too intimidated to try it. When creating the ladder, it can be helpful to think about your end goal (for example, to be able to be near dogs without panicking) and then break down the steps needed to reach that goal.
Work your way up the ladder. Start with the first step and don’t move on until you start to feel more comfortable doing it. If possible, stay in the situation long enough for your anxiety to decrease. The longer you expose yourself to the thing you’re afraid of, the more you’ll get used to it and the less anxious you’ll feel when you face it the next time. Once you’ve done a step on several separate occasions without feeling too much anxiety, you can move on to the next step. If a step is too hard, break it down into smaller steps or go slower.
Why am I here? Well, if God does exist, that means He is ultimate reality. If He created you for a reason, that’s ultimately why your here. If you’re valuable to Him, that’s ultimately what you’re worth. What He says is right is absolutely right and what He says is wrong is absolutely wrong. We may be free moral agents with the freedom to make moral decisions, but that doesn’t mean we can choose what actually is right or wrong; that just means we’re capable of choosing to be right or wrong. God makes the rules. The question is: will He enforce them? Will God ever hold us accountable for our moral decisions? The prevailing instinct among the majority seems to be that, yes, God will hold us accountable. It’s as if most people instinctually know that one day they’re going to have to explain all the bad things they’ve done (which of course means that they also instinctually know that there is such a thing as moral absolutes).
The point is, if God really does exist, terms like “justice,” “purpose,” and “morality” aren’t abstract notions: God has a purpose for you (that’s why He made you), He’s the one who instituted morality, and in the end He’ll see that justice prevails. That’s a comforting thought to some, but it’s terrifying to others.
So don’t begin by asking, “Why am I here?” Begin by asking, “Does God exist?” If He doesn’t exist there’s really no point in asking “why am I here?” – everything is ultimately pointless. And if He does exist, you’ll discover your reason for living when you discover who He is. So begin at the beginning. Does God exist?
There is a lot we can learn from plants. Plants take in carbon dioxide and give back oxygen. They give energy, shade, shelter, fruits and seeds. Even after they are dead plants still contribute. Always look at the big picture to understand your place in the ecosystem of life. Learn everything you can about your life, in the people you interact with, in the school you attend, in the social or school group you are in, in your organization, and the marketplace. Look for opportunities to give back to others. There is so much we can do for ourselves and others, like plants we were put on this world for a purpose, to give and receive. “ Our abilities to give and receive are at the core of our capacity to create and experience true prosperity” Shakti Gawain.
In his book Rich, Free, and Miserable, sociologist John Brueggemann shared a great story that illustrated why. Climbing Mount Everest is one of the challenges that inspire people to do something big. Lots of people try, even though nearly 10 percent of the people who do, die in the process. Many of the corpses still line the path up the mountain. Yet people still want to climb the mountain — though it has no real redeeming social value.
A few years back one climber, David Sharp, was clearly in trouble on the mountain. There were 40 climbers who noticed his obvious need but passed him that day. He died on Mount Everest because none of the other climbers were willing to put their personal goal on hold to help him.
That’s us. Our own personal drive to have more, be more, and do more causes us to lose sight of what really matters. But that isn’t how God wired us. Life isn’t about what you make, who you know, or what you do. Life is all about love — loving God and loving others.
Jesus tells us in Mark 8:35, “Only those who throw away their lives for my sake and for the sake of the Good News will ever know what it means to really live” (TLB). God wired you in a way that you’ll never be happy unless you’re giving your life away in his work. You were made for something greater than yourself. The Bible calls this your mission in life. Significance doesn’t come from status, salary, or sex. It comes from service. Only by giving your life away can you feel that your life has significance.