Today is a good day to relax. Let us set aside moments to relish a bit of nourishing solitude. How about spending time outdoors, reading some uplifting words, and cherishing a long, soothing soak in a tub.
There’s really nothing quite like laying down amidst warm water to help melt away the stresses of life.
That’s where I’m headed and I wish that for you as well.
Sometimes we just need to unplug.
May we all be refreshed and renewed for the days ahead, and grateful for the many blessings around us.
“There must be quite a few things a hot bath won’t cure, but I don’t know many of them.”
~ Sylvia Plath, The Bell Jar (1963)
“Noble deeds and hot baths are the best cures for depression.”
~ Dodie Smith, I Capture the Castle (1948)
“This is what the Sabbath is for: reverence, rest, renewal, rejuvenation, reassuring rituals, recreation, rejoicing, revelation, remembering how much you have to be grateful for, and saying ‘thank you!’ You can do this in a church, mosque, temple or synagogue, on a walk, while antiquing, sitting in bed propped up on pillows reading something wonderful with a breakfast tray, working the crossword puzzle before a roaring fire, attending a marvelous art exhibition or movie matinee, or listening to opera in the kitchen as you sip sherry and prepare a fabulous feast. What matters is that you do something special that speaks to your soul and that you revel in whatever you do. Your activities on the Sabbath should uplift you and provide enough inspiration to sustain you during the week to come.” ~ Sarah Ban Breathnach, Simple Abundance: A Daybook of Comfort and Joy
“Anybody can observe the Sabbath but making it holy surely takes the rest of the week.”
“When a storm is raging and the waves are tumultuous, it is wise to dive deep down to where the water is calm. If we remain on the surface, we will be tossed and turned. But if, like the whale, we retreat to the quiet depths of our own being, our true home, we will find rest and peace there. Once refreshed, we can resurface. This is the value of meditation. We can weather any storm with greater ease if we allow ourselves to retreat when necessary to the still, vast depths within.” ~Ann Mortifee
Having discovered how much better life is now that I live sober, I want to share about it. Certainly repeated attempts and failures at quitting bad habits are part of the process. However it was once I understood that I had to focus on what I want, rather than what I don’t, that the monkey fell off my back for good.
If there is a part of life that doesn’t look like what we want to see, let’s put more energy into seeing (even if only in our mind’s eye) what we do want, and cease from staring at, agonizing over, or giving energy to what we don’t want. This is the best and most thorough way to let those harmful habits fade away… by replacing them with new, better, healthy habits. The obsolete organically falls away as we grow into larger happier beings. Pay attention to how loved you are by God, right here and right now. Focus on what brings genuine joy. Let’s put our energy on that, and let the real fun begin!
“At the root of addiction is a natural impulse to satisfy our human needs for security, comfort, self-esteem, sensory gratification, and power. But at a deeper level, we know that that our addictions cannot fill the emptiness inside ourselves and will not lead to lasting peace and inner satisfaction.
“Identifying the void you have been trying to fill and replacing life-damaging beliefs and behaviors with those that are life-supporting ~ including meditation and other practices for higher consciousness ~ will serve you immeasurably on your journey to healing and transformation.”
~ excerpt from the Chopra Center’s ‘Overcoming Addiction’ [source]
“The universe has a way of pushing us to go beyond our limits. At first our challenges seem like curses, but in the end we learn to bless them. Challenge is God’s way of getting us to wake up to the fact that we are bigger than we thought we were. God is our best friend because He remembers our potential even when we don’t, and He will not let us slumber in the stupor of limited living.” ~Alan Cohen, Dare to be Yourself
“If you shelter yourself from challenge, your spirit will wither and you will grow weak of will. Your creativity will be reduced to a trickle. You will become bored and wonder what you are doing here. Learn to recognize boredom as a sign that you must escape the shell in which you have become entombed. Let restlessness spur you to reach out and stretch to your next creative adventure.” ~Alan Cohen, Dare to be Yourself, p.304
“Security is mostly a superstition. It does not exist in nature, nor do the children of men as a whole experience it. Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than outright exposure. Life is either a daring adventure, or nothing.” ~Helen Keller, The Open Door (1957)
In mathematics, two angles that are said to coincide fit together perfectly.
The word ‘coincidence’ does not describe luck or mistakes.
It describes that which fits together perfectly. ~Dr. Wayne Dyer
When I observe a loving older couple caring for each other I know it’s not luck that they have each other for support. When I witness the glowing face of my genuinely happy friend who has just had her own book published I know she’s not lucky. When I celebrate at another’s home filled with incredible art and furniture with floor to ceiling windows that have a spectacular view, I would never entertain the thought ‘Oh, they’re so lucky!’
There is a quote that has often been attributed to Thomas Jefferson, who was an incredible human being, yet this phrase was coined by Coleman Cox in his 1922 book Listen to This:
“I am a great believer in luck. The harder I work, the more of it I seem to have.” (quote info)
Kudos to that! I definitely agree. As well as with this rather firmly worded statement by Emerson:
“Shallow people believe in luck, believe in circumstances:
It was somebody’s name, or he happened to be there at the time,
or, it was so then, and another day it would have been otherwise.
Strong people believe in cause and effect.”
~Ralph Waldo Emerson, The Conduct of Life (1860)
A long and loving relationship requires consistent care and tending to, as much as any garden. The writing of a book and the publication process requires a tremendous amount of effort and persistence, and my friend worked very hard for her ‘good luck’. Prosperity and abundance doesn’t ‘just happen’ to people. They have to work at it. We all do. And often the most difficult form of the work is in between our ears.
We have to work at changing our belief patterns and developing good habits. Living with gratitude, prayer and meditation, regular physical exercise, reading nourishing material and avoiding entertainment that lowers our energy… all these things are ways we can work at ‘strengthening the muscle’ of the Happiness Habit. Things take practice and we have to work at anything to get better at it. As the adage in sports goes (likely adapted from that quote) “I am lucky, and the harder I practice the luckier I get.” Let’s practice, work at it, and make our own good luck.