Archives for Appreciation category

Gratitude is the key to life's abundance

Gratitude is the key to life’s abundance.

- Symphony of Love

I acknowledge the good that I already have in life and I am grateful for the abundance that life has given me. The below TED’s video has just shown me how I gonna fall in love with my life with gratefulness for the abundance and I too, hope that it would make you fall in love with yours.

Two of the numerous take backs from Brother David Steindl-Rast’s spoken words in the video which I would like to share with you:

“You think this is just another day in your life? It’s not just another day, it’s the one day that is given to you, today … it’s given to you, it’s a gift, it’s the only gift that you have right now and the only appropriate response is gratefulness …”

“Open your heart … that everyone that you meet on this day will be blessed by you … just by your eyes, by your smile, by your touch … just by your presence … let the gratefulness overflow into blessings all around you … then it would really be a good day!”

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No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted.

- Aesop -

Indeed, no matter how small an act of kindness is, it never fails to warmth the heart of the receiver and for the giver, you’ll simply feel fabulous! And if you happen to witness a random act of kindness, don’t you feel good too and be influenced, to certain extent, to perform an act of kindness for another?

Voltaire said, “I have decided to be happy because it’s good for my health.” I have decided to be kind because I believe it’s good for my health too; simply because being kind makes one happy.

Not only that, Kindness starts a ripple and when it is reciprocated or when it is paid forward, the ripple has no logical endings. And kindness is the hardest to give away because no matter what, it always comes back in one way or another. This video brilliantly illustrates an act of kindness as its passed from one individual to the next and eventually to boomerang back to the person who set it into motion.

Be the change you want to see in the world and spread the kindness ripple.

Children in Sindh, Pakistan, play at a water pump in a villageWhen we need clean water to wash our hands, to wash the dishes after a sumptuous meal, to do the laundry, to water the plants or simply to drink, all we need to do is to turn on the tap and water will start flowing. Have it ever occurred to you how that clean water goes from the reservoir or water catchment area to the comfort of your home? I remembered learning this in my science class during my school days many years back.

Being born in a nation where clean water, fit for drinking, is made readily available, I am guilty to say that I have also taken water for granted from time to time and this video brings the reality back to me that many in the world today still do not have accessed to clean water every day.

The worst experience which I had previously encountered was going for days without water for showering, cooking and normal washing up and it was more of a discomfort issue than a survival one. So how could I possibly hope to experience or understand what they are going through in their live everyday? These activities which are norms for many everyday are possibly a dream or luxury for people who do not even have clean water for the basic need of living.

Some facts, according to Drop in the Bucket:

“More than 70% of our planet’s surface is covered in water. Of that water, 97% of it is seawater and of that remaining 3%, only about 1% is suitable for drinking. Of that 1%, only 0.08% is accessible to humans. There are more than 7 billion people on the planet. That means there are more people alive right now than there have ever been. Of those 7 billion people, 783 million have never tasted a glass of clean water.

1 in 8 people lack access to clean, safe drinking water. Every day 4500 children will die from water related disease. Most of these deaths are preventable.”

For anyone who wants to help, you can go to Drop in the Bucket for more information on how you can reach out.

Watching the above video and reading the facts may not change the reality that many are still suffering without access to clean drinking water, but I certainly hope that with the awareness raised, people would be inspired to start caring for others in developing countries. These people do not exist in another world, the reality is that these people are suffering in the same world where you and I are thriving.

As Gandhi said, “Be the change you want to see in the world.”

Photo credit: Department for International Development/Russell Watkins
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Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma – which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.” – Steve Job

The Top Five Regrets of the Dying as shared by Bonnie Ware (who worked for years nursing the dying)

1. I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.

This was the most common regret of all. When people realise that their life is almost over and look back clearly on it, it is easy to see how many dreams have gone unfulfilled. Most people have had not honoured even a half of their dreams and had to die knowing that it was due to choices they had made, or not made.
It is very important to try and honour at least some of your dreams along the way. From the moment that you lose your health, it is too late. Health brings a freedom very few realise, until they no longer have it.

2. I wish I didn’t work so hard.

This came from every male patient that I nursed. They missed their children’s youth and their partner’s companionship. Women also spoke of this regret. But as most were from an older generation, many of the female patients had not been breadwinners. All of the men I nursed deeply regretted spending so much of their lives on the treadmill of a work existence.

By simplifying your lifestyle and making conscious choices along the way, it is possible to not need the income that you think you do. And by creating more space in your life, you become happier and more open to new opportunities, ones more suited to your new lifestyle.

3. I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings.

Many people suppressed their feelings in order to keep peace with others. As a result, they settled for a mediocre existence and never became who they were truly capable of becoming. Many developed illnesses relating to the bitterness and resentment they carried as a result.

We cannot control the reactions of others. However, although people may initially react when you change the way you are by speaking honestly,in the end it raises the relationship to a whole new and healthier level. Either that or it releases the unhealthy relationship from your life. Either way, you win.

4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.

Often they would not truly realise the full benefits of old friends until their dying weeks and it was not always possible to track them down. Many had become so caught up in their own lives that they had let golden friendships slip by over the years. There were many deep regrets about not giving friendships the time and effort that they deserved. Everyone misses their friends when they are dying.

It is common for anyone in a busy lifestyle to let friendships slip.But when you are faced with your approaching death, the physical details of life fall away. People do want to get their financial affairs in order if possible. But it is not money or status that holds the true importance for them. They want to get things in order more for the benefit of those they love. Usually though, they are too ill and weary to ever manage this task. It is all comes down to love and relationships in the end. That is all that remains in the final weeks,love and relationships.

5. I wish that I had let myself be happier.

This is a surprisingly common one. Many did not realise until the end that happiness is a choice. They had stayed stuck in old patterns and habits. The so-called ‘comfort’ of familiarity overflowed into their emotions, as well as their physical lives. Fear of change had them pretending to others, and to their selves, that they were content. When deep within, they longed to laugh properly and have sillyness in their life again.

When you are on your deathbed, what others think of you is a long way from your mind. How wonderful to be able to let go and smile again, long before you are dying.

As posted in Oh Darling.

Photo by ElRincon
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