Article by Dee DeWitt, Edited by Dee DeWitt

 

If we’re not busy, we feel unproductive and lazy …

 

That’s what we’re taught in this fast-paced, cram as many things into each day as possible world.  The modern world where everything is a rush.  Moreover, we compete by trying to show how busy we are … and the winner is the person with the most insane schedule, because obviously that means he’s the most popular and successful.

 

Well, maybe not. Perhaps the modern world is wrong.  Perhaps the speed and sheer volume of doing is not as important as what we focus on doing.

 

Perhaps we need to slow down … so that we don’t miss out on life with our constant rushing.  Slow down, stop rushing, and enjoy life. Read More »

Posted on 7 March, 2010 in Balance, Happiness, Making the Day Count
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Article by Malcolm Marler, Edited by Dee DeWitt

 

For those of us who are of the Christian faith, Matthew 6:19-43 is one of the clearest passages about Christian simplicity in the Bible.  Take a moment and read it through (see below).

 

The words of Jesus are radical as he instructs us to vow, “I trust that God will take care of my basic needs and I do not need to be anxious about anything.”  For me, it is an invitation to live radically different than I do.

 

I am trying to live more simply, and discovering it’s not about simple answers as much as it is about defining my priorities of what is most important.  I want to live more simply so that I can live my life with more purpose.

 

My problem is … I don’t really stop long enough to know what my priorities are for living today. Read More »

Posted on 5 March, 2010 in Happiness, Simplify
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I’m learning that my deepest lessons are learned when I look at what someone has said or done to me that was hurtful and ask the question, ‘How have I done this to others in my thoughts or actions?’”

 

Article by Malcolm Marler, Edited by Dee DeWitt

 

As I sat in the meeting with a group of fellow co-workers (not my chaplain team), I was caught off guard by the comments of one of the group members. He critiqued a workshop that I had recently led in front of the group, and he told me how disappointed he was that I didn’t talk enough about some things he thought would have been more helpful to the audience.

 

I felt my face grow warm with embarrassment and I was aware of the tightness in my throat and the defensiveness in my voice.  Finally, I just sat back and listened, though I could feel the sadness in my heart and the pit in my stomach that he (and maybe others) was not impressed.

 

He did not approve.  I was not all that he wanted me to be, I had failed to impress or to be held in high esteem by this individual.  My stress level was on high alert.

 

Can you remember a time when you were criticized by a co-worker, a family member, or your spouse or partner? Read More »

Posted on 1 March, 2010 in Happiness, Simplify
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Article by Dee DeWitt, Edited by Dee DeWitt

There is a close relative who appears – to the casual observer – to have most things our modern culture tells us we should aspire to.He has a beautiful home with a pool and a view, a lucrative retirement after a highly successful business career, an intelligent wife with her own professional career, and a life mostly of leisure …

And yet I know he is not content.In fact, he is one of the least content people I know.

He’s not alone.Many people feel that there is something missing from their lives.Despite having everything they need they aren’t happy, aren’t content, cannot find satisfaction.

Personally, I have been through several stages of discontentment in my life … and in fact, I’m in one now as I experience the frustration and fear of searching for a job in our tough economy.

But I also know that I have climbed out of these valleys more than once.Many times in fact. It isn’t easy.But I know from personal experience that it’s possible.And all the while, I try to be thankful for the many blessings God has seen fit to give me.

Thinking over these times in my own life, here are a few things I’ve learned we can do to bring contentment back into our lives.I don’t profess to be the expert – far from it! – just someone who is walking this path and trying to learn as I go:

• Change our attitude and perspective.

• Take some kind of positive action.

• Do something that gives meaning.

These things can be done all at once, one at a time, or in whatever combination works for you personally. They can work alone, or in tandem: Read More »

Posted on 13 February, 2010 in Gratitude, Happiness
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Article by Malcolm Marler, Edited by Dee DeWitt

 

I park about 6 to 7 blocks from my work each day so that I get a little extra exercise.

 

Yesterday I was walking from my office to the car and I came upon a young woman in her 20’s who was singing at the top of her lungs.  It was a happy song she sang with her head tilted back not caring who could hear her.

 

It was a gift she was freely sharing.  I admired her confidence as she sang acapella.  I could hear her a half block away and I watched her free spirited body language as she walked with bold, long purposeful strides.

 

When she saw me about 10 feet from her, she did not skip a beat in her song.  I smiled and interrupted her and said, “Whatever you do in your life, don’t stop singing.  Thank you for sharing your song with the world.”

 

She smiled and stopped for a moment.  “I’m singing about California, I love California.  Have you ever been?” she asked.  “Well, yes, I have,” I responded.  “What part?” she said quickly as she cocked her head to one side.  “San Francisco,” I added.  “That’s where I am from,” as she walked away starting her song once again for the world to hear. Read More »

Posted on 9 February, 2010 in Happiness, Making the Day Count
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