What Life Taught Me

August 18, 2016

 

Life has a weird way of teaching us things. There is no rhyme or reason evident to me why some people learn life’s lessons during some incidents and other people during other situations. The following are some of the lessons I have learned and without sounding presumptuous, wise, or as if I have found the capital “T” truth I will share them with you.

 

Life is hard and you will get knocked down many times; thus, the kind things you do for others do them without having any expectation for other to reciprocate. Everyone has their reasons and we ought not expect others to have the same emotional resiliency and development as ourselves.

 

Anger, resentment, and despair are learned behaviors that exist solely on our minds as reflections of our past memories. Live in the here-and-now, and those painful memories cannot control your true self, the only self, the present. If you should chose to examine your present situation in life based on your distant memories then you will forever be a slave to our own mind. Alice Morse Earle wrote "The clock is running. Make the most of today. Time waits for no man. Yesterday is history. Tomorrow is a mystery. Today is a gift. That's why it is called the present."

 

Time is an illusion, and although it has functional purposes, it is a tool which has no real value. Be present and allow yourself to be the director of your life. Peace cannot be found by reflecting on your past. Mahatma Gandhi stated “Each one has to find his peace from within. And peace to be real must be unaffected by outside circumstances.” I would add that peace should not be contingent on prior internal debris either. For the internal debris to affect you, then you are associating yourself with and as the thinker (mind).

 

People are good at what they practice. If you aspire to be a good swimmer, then swim and you will be sure to become more efficient. If you practice running you will be sure to become faster and fit. The same holds true anger. If you practice feeling and venting anger you will become more proficient at being angry and hyper-vigilant. If you practice being depressed the same will hold true. Practice being happy and realizing that what the Buddha stated is true, ‘we are what we become.’

 

Learn to acknowledge the petulant child within; that inner dialogue that goes on clamoring for attention. Ignoring the voices in our heads does not make you sane, but will likely cause the opposite. Treat that inner dialogue like the petulant child it is, and put it in time out when it becomes too demanding; for the mind is great servant but a terrible master. Peace is not something you find until you learn to forgive those that hurt you in your past. Dare to change who you are and you will find a level of self-awareness that will expose the true you.

The person behind the thinker; it is there that you will find acceptance for who and where you are and be unaffected by others. 

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