Five Ways to Present Your Best Self and Create Harmony in Your Relationships

Have you ever stopped to just listen to yourself?

Do you communicate well with others? Do you show love and support through the way you talk and act? Do you even recognize how you show up for yourself, and whether you are doing yourself a disservice in those moments? Consider the idea that when one chooses bad behavior, in part or in whole, it is a reflection of one’s character.

If you find yourself yelling at someone, saying things you regret, or barking foul language, you eventually will be remorseful. That is, of course, if you have a conscience.

Look, everyone has bad days, bad situations, and hard luck. I know I do. There are times when I’ve had regret on how I presented myself, what I’ve said, and what I’ve done. Although we all must move beyond those moments, forgiving each other, how we handle ourselves in those situations, and whether or not we realize our flaws, is what makes all the difference. Our future depends upon it.

Here are five ways to show up for yourself and salvage those relationships:

  1. Make a happier you. If there’s only one thing that comes from presenting yourself well, it is that you create a happier life for yourself. You do this by showing up for yourself; choosing your reactions. Since you’re more aware of what you say and do, you won’t get all worked up in the emotional end of a situation. You know how to think on your feet. Obviously, that doesn’t mean there won’t be pain in the process, but how you react to that pain can change the scenario dramatically. In time, you figure out how to make every situation work a little bit better.
  2. If you owe one, give it. With relationships comes disagreements; it’s normal for most people…and apologies soon follow. If you owe one, give it. However, open ears and an open heart can only hear the words “I’m sorry” so many times. The receiver must believe, without a doubt, that you are truly sorry, and that you understand how you hurt them. Then again, if this situation is one that continually happens, chances are your words will be ignored. The belief that things will change will not be an option.
  3. Create a plan and make a vow to shine. Make a vow to pay attention to yourself. Recognize your trigger points, ahead of time, and figure out what you can do to avoid potential conflict that comes your way. Remove yourself from negative conversations, and most definitely refrain from stirring the pot, so to speak. Promise yourself going into situations that you will show up in the best version of yourself.
  4. Look for the solutions. Take the time to look for positive remedies for when issues arise. Find ways to combat conflict without a negative tone. Being mature about the outcome can create solutions that you never thought of before now.
  5. Do your homework and make good choices. If you believe with all your heart that the relationship is worth salvaging, then go after it. If the connection was not meant to be, and is not important to your future, then let it go. Holding on to combative relationships, or the resentment, remorse, and bitterness that comes with the territory will only destroy you in the process.

In the end, relationships created out of love or respect usually overcome the small details of petty issues. Connections that don’t have at least one of these two ingredients, love or respect, may very well discontinue once conflict arises. Even with the words of apology, there’s a strong possibility that one or the other may not want to continue the relationship.

We only have so many love connections in this world. Do your part to find ways to keep those connections alive and well. Be the hero, take a chance, and be vulnerable with your heart. Let others know you care. You might be surprised how many hearts will open through your actions.

Genuinely,

Kimberly Mitchell
Author of Loving with Purpose

To read more on dating, relationships, family and friends, check out my book, Loving with Purpose, or go to any of the following links…

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10 of the Best Ways to Consider Consideration

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As you go about your day, consider being thoughtful to someone else. You’d be surprised how easy it is to make a person feel special with one simple action or word from you. Being considerate of each other has become a thing of the past for many; however, there are many MORE people who are kind, selfless, and understanding of another human being.

The thing is that NOTHING is more appealing in this world than a simple touch or gesture from another person; one that lets us know that they care. Yeah, we may think becoming successful and having many things will be gratifying, but more importantly it is through our grace and kindness to one another that actually gives us the ability to become more powerful than ever before!

Think about how much you love and care for your pet, or even a car or some other inanimate object….THEN go be that kind to someone else in that manner.

To get you started, here are 10 of the best ways to consider consideration:

  1. Ask a family member or neighbor if they need anything while you’re out running errands.
  2. Take on someone else’s responsibility for a day; your spouse, a friend, a parent. They’ll be grateful for your service.
  3. Say “Please” and “Thank You” to those who do for you and say “Hi” to everyone!
  4. Chill out when it comes to a different point-of-view. Everyone has an opinion and you don’t have to agree with them. Think about how important the point is you’re trying to make. Is it really worth arguing about?
  5. Rub the shoulders of someone in pain, or extend a hand to a person in need.
  6. Kneel down and talk to a child; come down to their view of the world.
  7. Stop interrupting when someone else is talking. When in conversation, give the other person a chance to talk, too.
  8. Consider a person’s schedule, time, abilities, and even personality.
  9. Don’t leave other people out. For example, sit lower, place yourself properly, or keep your head still in a room full of people; like church, a concert, or other event…so as to not obstruct the view. Another example could be to include others in your invitations so as to not leave someone out.
  10. Remind yourself that every plastic bottle or box you recycle is probably two or three bags a week (in my house anyway) that you save from the landfill. That’s like helping billions of people all at once!

Some of these may be tough for many of readers, I’m sure. Good news is that being considerate is always as close as your nearest retailer. For instance, #8 comes in handy when in a checkout line. If the guy behind you has one item and your cart is a little hefty, let him go in front of you. Oh, and let’s not forget the cashier! Consider if she is busy; not to mention, dealing with the frustrations of those who wait their turn. Offer her a kind word and a stress-free transaction.

We all have things we can work on in ourselves. I can definitely name a few for me. The thing is to be conscious of what you are putting out there so that the best of you comes forward. Self-awareness is key when making changes to your behaviors. Make a note, list, or add a calendar entry with a recurring event, “Be considerate to someone today.” With time, you will automatically become a giver; of yourself and of your thoughtfulness.

When you intently put one consideration after another out there, you instantaneously become more graceful and happy. How about that for payoff!!!

Consider adding a comment here or on my post, “What’s the One Good Thing…”

I will end with a quote about consideration and character.

“Your greatness is measured by your kindness; your   education and intellect by your modesty; your ignorance is betrayed by your   suspicions and prejudices, and your real caliber is measured by the consideration and tolerance you have   for others.” – William   J. H. Boetcker

Thank you for visiting Loving with Purpose.

Kimberly Mitchell

To read more on dating, relationships, family and friends, check out my book, Loving with Purpose, or go to any of the following links…

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Happiness of the Heart

Happy Children

HAPPINESS OF THE HEART

By Mary Cook, M.A., R.A.S.

True happiness comes from the heart, not the mind.  Our mind typically judges, compares and places conditions on happiness, pointing out what’s wrong or missing even in the best of circumstances.  In the midst of a wondrous experience, for example, the mind may remind us that a certain person is not present to share the wonder, and thus happiness is diminished.  Yet the mind tells us that when we receive abundant gratification of a desire, we’ll be happy.  It might be success, sex, money, power, leisure time, a mate, alcohol or other drugs.  When we’re chasing after happiness, we’re also running away from problems, trauma, shame, loss and pain.  And the mind tells us that these troubles will continue or reoccur at any moment.  So we’d better capture and control the objects of our happiness.  Addictions and compulsions are practiced with the intent to distract us from pain and stress and artificially induce euphoria or relief.  This keeps the false self dominant rather than the spiritual self.  This separation from an active conscious relationship with our Higher Power means that no amount of anything we desire can lead to true happiness, for we have disconnected from the source of pure love, truth and joy.  Only unhappiness comes from this illusion of separation.  Fear and attempts to control and possess what we desire, removes the very possibility of happiness.

Real happiness is not dependent upon anything.  It is our true nature.  We can see it in young children before we teach them otherwise.  They amuse and entertain themselves.  They are sensitive and empathic.  They love without biases and prejudices.  They experience joy watching a caterpillar, looking at ribbons of light coming through the trees, playing with dad’s fingers, babbling to mom, and jumping up and down.  Young children can express more happiness from a box than the gift inside it.  A box after all, can be a hat, a boat, a drum or a house.  Young children still feel the kingdom of Heaven within them.  They can remind us of what we have forgotten.  Happiness is right now, it’s free, it’s within us, it gives and shares, it’s outside of time, space, distance and conditions.  It’s creative, uplifting and contagious.  Having a sense of lightness, playfulness and humor about ourselves and life, contributes to heartfelt happiness and reconnects us to our true selves, others and life.  It also gives us resilience, adaptability, hope, courage and strength in times of trouble.

Happiness arises from relaxing and surrendering mental focus, and allowing our hearts to open and expand for no reason.  In this place we can remember that we were created whole and holy and that we are interconnected with all of life.  Correct bowing places the heart higher than the head.  Feeling united with a healthy, loving Higher Power allows us to experience the power within our heart.  A bedridden patient in pain can forget his suffering when a beloved child visits.  All of a sudden we’re not sick when someone needs us.  A crippled, arthritic man can lose all symptoms of disease when playing the piano because of his happiness in doing so.  A petite, frail mother can lift heavy objects off her child to save her in an accident.  Spontaneous acts of heroism, altruism and love spring from the heart, whereas the mind would say this is impossible or problematic.

Allowing our attention to be in the present moment and appreciating what exists right now, counting our blessings, being in loving service, enjoying nature, music, art, people, animals, and seeing beauty around us, is happiness.  We can have a daily practice of identifying and surrendering to our Higher Power our small minded selfishness, harmfulness, willfulness and defensiveness, and ask for divine will to work through us.  We can hold compassionate space for suffering and painful emotions to be expressed and released.  We can begin this process by feeling compassion for ourselves and loved ones.  We can accept our ignorance and transgressions, and honor our desire for redemption and transformation.  Then we can practice feeling compassion and acceptance for strangers and for those who are harmful in the world, believing that goodness exists in the soul despite human expression.  In most situations as adults, safe boundaries, straightforward assertiveness and healthy behaviors on our part suffice to protect us from those who might harm us.  Forgiveness is an emotion of the heart that releases trapped toxic energies within us, creating greater space for serenity, freedom and joy.  This is a rejuvenating practice and additionally helpful in placing more positive energy into the world.

It is vital to demonstrate principles that reinforce our spiritual nature, and to strengthen our faith when we are feeling lost and confused.  We experience an even higher level and depth of happiness when we’re able to identify what goodness and joy exists in difficult circumstances, what opportunities for growth, character development, unselfish demonstrations of love, spiritual evolution and unity with the God of our understanding are present in trials and tribulations.  Long ago I visited a poor village and asked the elder if he was happy with his life.  He replied that yes, he was very happy.  In some years, he explained, there is abundant food and no children die.  And so we sing, dance and rejoice.  In other years there is not enough to eat, and sickness and death visit us.  In those years our love expands, we become closer and give our hearts to one another, for that is all we have.  So, yes, we are very happy all the time.  This village elder was abundantly rich with happiness of the heart, and this is a magnificent model for all of us.