“Don’t Judge Everyone Else by Your Limited Experience.” – Carl Sagan

Written for and Published in The Seeds 4 Life.

Sitting in the stands, watching a game of soccer, we cheer on our team and celebrate each score. We shout when displeased with a bad call and share the nervousness when there is little time left and one more goal could win the game, all from the stands as spectators.

For the players, it is a different experience. Their action dictates our reaction. To the players, the stand is their motivation and they will perhaps feel the disappointment of not meeting expectation hardest. Many of us have never experienced this perspective because our journey has taken us elsewhere. Our journey has sat us in the stands watching another’s experience as if it were our own, but yet never walking in their shoes.

Although the shared empathy of the player-spectator relationship is one to be admired, it is one to also remind us that our perspective is limited to our own experience. It is one, which can teach us, different people experience the same situation many different ways. We cannot judge how it is experienced because we are seeing this life from the perspective we have created with our own life’s experiences.

How enriching it is to realize the world is seen through many different lenses. How fortunate we are, to invite the player into our perspective and being allowed to share in the experience of a player’s perspective. It is a beautiful game, this life, and even more beautiful if we realize and engage in the realization that our experiences are limited. The many players in our lives can provide an even more insightful and beautiful view if we free ourselves from judging them sitting in the stands we have decided to see the world from.

“I’m Not Perfect, I Am Much Stronger Than That” – Rune Lazuli

Written for and Published in The Seeds 4 Life.

When the mirror is asked:

Mirror mirror on the wall 

Who is perfect after all?

The mirror reflects back what we have defined as our flaws. It lists the names and pictures of the people we admire and strive to be like. It points to our insecurities and says, “See that? Not perfect at all.”

But that mirror mirror on the wall does not know the scars we wear, tell the stories of survival, of healed pain, of getting up after being knocked down. It does not know the beautiful mind behind those eyes. It does not know the creative potential our hearts hold. 

Perfection? No, thank you. Strength. Strength in being who we are. Strength in celebrating our differences. Strength in recognizing our own journey.

Next time, when the mirror is staring back at us, remind it:

“I am not perfect. I am much stronger than that.”

“But People Are Oceans. You Cannot Know Them by Their Surface” – Beau Taplin

Written for and Published in The Seeds 4 Life.

Walking along the shore, notice the seashells each wave gifted the sand. Most of our admiration goes to the ones that are unbroken, the ones with unique coloring, the ones, so big, they cover the entire palm of our hand. We gather some of these admired ones and decorate our lives with them.

But what if we took the time to pick the broken ones? What if we studied their jagged edges and asked them where their journey has taken them? What if we picked the dull colors and polished them clean to expose their radiance? What if we chose the tiniest shell and looked for the universe in their minuteness?

Just like shells, the people we meet every day, we often do not see. We notice their exterior and choose the ones who appeal to us. Meanwhile, the ones who seem broken, or ordinary, are assumed to be unable to add to our lives.

If we looked past what appears to us, we may see, we are the ocean. There is much more to each one of us than our jagged edges, our vibrant colors, and the way we fit into each other’s hands.

“Stop Getting Distracted by Things That Have Nothing to Do With Your Goals” – Unknown

Written for and Published in The Seeds 4 Life.

We set our sights and off we go to meet our goals. We focus on our destination, until the focus shifts to the odd noise coming from the motor, the bugs splattered on the windshield, and the static coming from the radio station. To shift our focus further, the gas light just came on to tell us it’s empty.

Our focus shift distracts us into attending to matters we have prioritized over the path toward our goal. That odd noise from the motor is the doubt we’ve allowed to creep into our head. It’s the people in our lives telling us we can’t do it. It’s the excuses we have started to makes as to why our goal is unattainable.

The bugs splattered on the windshield are the minor inconveniences we focus on and convince ourselves is blocking our view to the destination. It’s the rainy day without an umbrella or the missing the bus and foregoing waiting for the next one. 

The static from the radio is the things we do on a daily basis that moves us no closer to our goal than yesterday. It is the unproductive habits. The sleeping in late, the habitual scrolling through social media, the watching too much television, the procrastination of what can be done today and telling ourselves “I’ll do that tomorrow.”

And with these distractions, comes wasted energy. Wasting so much energy, we sputter along to our goals on empty. Often times, breaking down in the middle of the road wondering where the time went. Fortunately, for many of us, it is during this breakdown we get out of the car and notice the motor is quiet, the radio static is off, and the bugs on the windshield no longer block our view. 

It is then we realize, in the horizon, our goal is still there waiting for us. Distractions are loud, but our ambition will roar if we take the focus away from the things that beg for our attention but have nothing to do with our goals. So let’s get back in the car, turn the key, and focus shift.

“The Trees Know That You Can Be Still and Grow at the Same Time” – Chris McGeown

Written for and Published in The Seeds 4 Life.

Growth does not always need to be loud. It does not always need to enter the room and scream at the top of its lungs “I am changed!” – It does not always need to shake things up like an earthquake exposing new lands above water. It does not always need to roll in like a hurricane, creating a path of destruction to be rebuilt. Growth can be still.

Admire the Oak tree and remember, it began in darkness as a tiny seed. It embraced the silence and nourished itself with the soil it was immersed in. Silently, it broke through to find the light and continued to reach up to it through wind, through cold, through rain, through heat. It grew through the years, but every day it was still.

Growth is for ourselves, and how we welcome the world. It does not need an announcement. It is for us to experience and to witness. It is for us to recognize and to accept. It is for us to continue, even in stillness.

“Do the Earth a Favor, Don’t Hide Your Magic.” – Yung Pueblo

Written for and Published in The Seeds 4 Life.

We are magic. Don’t believe me? Notice the breath you are taking right now. Without direction, our lungs expand. Place your hand in the middle of your chest and feel the beating of your heart muscle, pumping life through your body. We are alive.

The magic of being alive allows us the opportunity to create, to feel, to follow our passions. It gives us each day to follow our bliss and to learn about the magic we all are.

The illusion, however, lives in how we see ourselves. As ordinary or as extraordinary. 

As a grain in the sand or as part of the universe. As a product of chance or as a creation of magic. 

Close your eyes, feel your breath, touch your heart. We are an extraordinary part of this universe. We are magic.

“We Often Are the Clouds That Block the Sun From Shining on Our Day.” -Uknown

Written for and Published in The Seeds 4 Life.

The dawn is breaking; the sunrise begins to greet us through our window curtains. A new day has begun. Are we jumping out of bed, whispering “THANK YOU,” or are we pulling the covers over our heads cursing the daylight’s greeting?

The sun is above us now, shining bright. It is flirting with lakes and oceans, gifting them with glistening reflections of the sky. Are we allowing the sun to embrace us with its warmth? Or are we running from our shadow?

Dusk is creeping in and twilight will soon color the horizon. As the sun kisses the trees good night, are we in gratitude for the day or are we already living in tomorrow?

For the rest of our lifetime, the sun will rise, will play across the sky, and make its way to set. It will be the constant company to our day; behind storm clouds or in clear blue skies. Look up from time to time and be in gratitude for this daily visit.