Thank you one and all for the birthday wishes yesterday. Every expression made me smile, which if you know me you realize that just isn't anatomically my natural state.
Yesterday was something of a milestone birthday by the way. It's achieving one of those ages where I can see the world being different in front of me, all be it a world that is still many years away. In honor of milestones and such, here are a few random thoughts about life that I've learned while getting older.
The Grass Is Never Greener.
I know, I've said this before, but with each birthday this thought becomes even truer: The grass is never greener on the other side. For the most part, we are all equally dysfunctional. Everyone...every family...is struggling in some way. Be it substance abuse, mental health issues, physical health issues or something else. The only difference between all of us is the fact that some are better at hiding the struggle than others.
You Become What You Surround Yourself With.
This is what our parents tried to warn us about we hung around with the "bad kids". I never had that problem myself growing up, but my late brother Chris did; our mother would say that "if there was one bad kid in the room, Chris would find him and make him is a best friend". Where I've seen this play out in my own life is when I tolerate consistent and institutional negativity around me. Granted that we are all negative sometimes, as life is far from sunshine, kittens, and rainbows. However, it's important to not let yourself be continuously immersed in negative stuff. Literally, the clouds block out the sunlight.
Always Sign Your (Real) Name.
I am proud of the fact that I own my opinions. Whether it's here or responding via comments to some news story, I don't hide behind pseudonyms. I really think the world would be a better place without anonymous Internet keyboard commanders.
The Greatest Battles Are Fought Within.
I've found...make that "am continuously being reminded that"...the vast majority of the time in my life, it's not the situation that's problematic, it's my reaction to the situation.
Always Assume Positive Intent.
Everyone is born innocent; it's life and choices that turn us into who we are and what we become. That noted, always assume positive intent. Even the worst of us has the potential to be and do good. We all have a daily shot at redemption. By assuming positive intent, we may just open the door for someone else to turn a corner, to give them a small chance to make a small change. What's more, assuming positive intent is less about others anyway; it's more about who we are as a person and the choices we make. Now, this doesn't mean that we ignore threats to our own (physical/mental) health, but it does mean that we should set the default switch positive.
Always Be Heading For The Light.