I cried this morning. Not because I was depressed. Far from it.

The reason is something that I knew was coming. I was prepared. But until you experience something, preparation is just a word on a page.
The tears were for the death of my parents. Eight months apart last year. Mum first, Dad second. Was it the memory of Mum in hospital with tubes and lines feeding out of her body? Was it the knowledge that her organs were shutting down? Was it the sanitised language used by the doctors to prepare us?
Or was it my Father’s gradual descent into loneliness sparked off by her last breath? His dementia and tightening grip on my arm in the late hours of his last few nights.

No.

The tears were the distance between myself and my parents now. A connection of love between us which feels like a long optic cable upon which travels our emotions.
So I sat in my shed this morning, in one of their old lounge room chairs and looked at my Dad’s watch on my left hand. A watch that still works and guides me in my life. It keeps me on time and, in someways, connected.

Some tears are good.

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Short, focused, one minute meditations can be the linchpin of your progress to control mental distractions.
I am finding that for the first time I have a reliable, working weapon against distractions leading my behaviour. It’s all about establishing mental distance from internal dialogue.
Method – throughout the day, whenever I feel that an unhealthy thought or distraction enters my focus I stop what I am doing, close my eyes and concentrate on my heart rate. Remaining totally still I can feel my heart beats in my chest so I count out 60 heart beats. It could be 60 seconds but for me it’s 60 beats of my heart. As I see the offending distraction enter my field of focus, I simply realise what it is, separate myself from the thought, then go back to counting heart beats.
When this becomes routine, it becomes the only way to gain control over insistent negative thoughts.
Remember, purposeful rituals beat bad habits.
man wearing black cap with eyes closed under cloudy sky

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Micro Habits

Posted: February 5, 2019 in Habits, Life direction
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Micro Habits steer my life in the over-all direction that I want.

Think about that.

The tiny things you do every day – even every hour – make the biggest difference in the overall outcome.

That’s worth writing down.

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When I was four I had a handstand competition with the kids in the street. I won! The prize was a kiss on the cheek from someone’s sister.

From that moment, I attached self-esteem to winning, and winning to being favoured by the opposite sex.

So, chasing winning, and being attractive to make me feel better about myself, can be short-circuited by just feeling better about myself in the first place. That means I can give myself this gift without having to constantly win.
Besides, winning forever is impossible. It’s also tiring. Winning adoration from others constantly is also impossible, and tiring.

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My life purpose should  help me make ethical decisions.

My life purpose is:

To learn about myself as quickly as I can so that I can help others to do the same. This gives me meaning and purpose and outweighs chasing temporary happiness.

Also, to show respect to all others about their attitudes to life. Its their journey.

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This is simple and it should be. Please write your comment below:

Disagree? Need more info? Too short?

I’d appreciate your input….

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Bet that got your attention!

The two-step process is simple. Difficult but simple.

Firstly, your child will remember ‘how’ you lived long after you are gone.

Secondly, your conversations about the world, current events, and how you feel about the latest news will dim with time. However, your quotes will get traction and stickability. Read the rest of this entry »

I sit here with my daughter.

 

What a year 2018 has been.

First my Mum entered hospital.

Then she died with us staring at her.

Feels like one minute I was thinking of calling her.

The next I was struggling to write her eulogy, then standing to deliver it.

Next, the diagnosis of Dad’s terminal cancer was added to his grief.

Probably 6 months to go and no coming back.

He lasted 8 so I wrote his eulogy.

Words didn’t do him justice.

 

Now my brain throws memories at me.

4 years old and faking sleep so that he would carry me.

52 years later I’m pulling his nappy up and carrying him to bed.

Then sitting down to watch him struggle to breathe.

My beloved Father with only days to live.

He was dying of a broken heart.

 

Now I question life.

More than ever before.

I grab happiness as it arises.

Try to make a difference.

Hoping to leave a mark.

Advice for the young.

 

Sometimes words just don’t do it justice.

Supporting my Dad

So I sit here with my daughter.

 

I’m gradually pulling out of the trauma of losing both parents this year.
My reaction since Dad died, eight months after Mum, has been a morbid, What’s the point? As if there was a point to life but it was eluding me.
A calmness has ensued now with me realising that the fact is… there is no point. In the space of time between birth and death we make ourselves busy with finding a direction and purpose.
It’s a bit like reading a book on holiday. You find a good book and immerse yourself in it as you know one day you will be returning home. Some of my best holidays have been like that. A simple existence on a beach in a hammock for two weeks. Immersing myself in a good story.
Quite a calm way to go, don’t you think?

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Sawing Through Legs

Posted: June 26, 2018 in Perspective
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Some images stick in our brains.

Driving along a country road this morning I passed an unusual sight. Next to a dead kangaroo a driver had pulled over in his four-wheel-drive. Crouching next to our national animal, a man was sawing its leg off.
Opportunism?
Barbarism?
A practical joke?

Some things stick. This one did.

Because he was actually cutting through the hind quarter as I drove past, the timing made me try to attach meaning. Should we always be aware of our surroundings? Do we concentrate too much on our immediate objective and miss other opportunities? Are opportunities always around us but are we too focused on making a living? Or was he just really hungry?

Stop and watch a sunset more often is the take home.

And … don’t take things so seriously.

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A0ABF98D-33A9-4D3E-8813-B9131653DC66Life. Sometimes it really forces you to stop and observe what is going on in that moment. One of those moments happened tonight so I wrote a description:

“I am sitting here next to my Dad. Outside at night. My Mum died 6 months ago and Dad is heartbroken. He has cancer and is now looking forward to joining Mum soon. In the meantime, he sleeps in the chair next to me.”

This is not meant to be sad. It is part of life. It happens in every city in every country in every part of the world. Families say goodbye to grandparents and it is one of the ingredients that makes life worth living. That ingredient is that it doesn’t last forever.

As my mum used to say when things got tough, “This too shall pass“.