Sometimes to forget is the most powerful thing you can do

Sometimes forgetting is the best thing you can do to become who you were meant to be.

Forget that you feel like a failure and that you can’t do this or that and the mistake you made back then.

Forget thinking that you’re not enough, that you don’t look a certain way, have the credentials, talent, network, or the perfect quaff of hair.

Forget comparing yourself to others who have more of more—more money, friends, cars, sex, lovers, homes, children, followers, beauty.

Forget the shame and guilt that you carry around you like lead weights; you aren’t what you think you are; you are far greater, more magnificent and beautiful than you can imagine.

Forget the anxiety, the negative stories, the imperfection, the stress, the haters and the hate. Forget all that hinders you from reaching your potential.

And remember this.

You are enough.

The truth you need to know about your pain

Pain. It marks and makes us.

The death of a loved one, the breaking of love, the broken promises, the promising future never realized, the realization that your body won’t stop aching…causes us great grief; but they often act as the compass of life, directing us to our true north.

Who would we be without it? We are marked, like babes at birth.

We yearn for it to disappear, though. How could we not? It’s pain. If we could rid ourselves of it, we would in a moment, a breath. Instead, we lie awake, swallowed in darkness—pining—dreaming of healing, sustained relief, a whole wholeness, love.

It’s there. We can feel it, sensing that relief is near, and sometimes we find it. But some pains are beyond the healing found in this world, now. That adds to our suffering; it’s the pain of pain.

But it’s that ache that grows us, molds us, deepens us, enrich us. It’s our seasoning. By it, our life’s song is more sonorous—richer. It lets us resonate and connect with others, so we can weep when they weep and rejoice when they rejoice. Our pain unites us.

Nevertheless, I believe there is a place where whole wholeness comes, washing over us like the inevitable tide washes the shore. And we will bathe in it like a hot bath in winter, relief, but not temporary—eternal.

For now, we must move forward through the pain, forsaking bitterness, jealousy, hopelessness. Forsake them. Choose to grow. Ask for help. Pray. Seek, and you shall find. And, in the process, you will be surprised.

Our pain is like the pangs of childbirth, throbbing, ornery, agonizing. But it births something, no, someone amazing.

You.


Book Recommendations:
Here are some books that I found very helpful in dealing with and thinking about pain. Now, to be upfront, these are coming from a Christian framework. Nonetheless, they are immensely beneficial.


1) Problem of Pain, by C. S. Lewis (affiliate): This is a philosophical look into the subject and answers the big questions about pain that we all have.
2) A Grief Observed, by C. S. Lewis (affiliate): After Lewis’s wife died, he wrote this book. It’s raw and beautiful.


This post is dedicated to Michelle and Matt, college friends who just lost their 19 year old son. My heart breaks.

One of the most important people we forget to be kind to

Be kind to yourself today. 

You might have screwed up, but you’re not a screwup. 

You might have made a mistake, but you aren’t a mistake. 

You are worthy. You are lovable. You are beautiful. 

Punishing yourself will not right the wrong. That would only add to it. 

Forgive yourself. Let it go. Move forward. 

Love yourself.


The pic below made my day when I saw it. So I thought it might brighten up yours and help you get on the path of self-compassion.


If you want to read a book to help you with this, I recommend Daring Greatly by Brené Brown (affiliate link).

It’s a fantastic read, what helped me see my need for self-compassion.

You need to know that you really are enough

No matter how many likes, hearts, or comments you get, you are enough. Yes. You are. 

We’ve always lived in a world where we’ve compared ourselves with others; the problem is now we have ample data to measure our comparisons. 

If we get less engagement than we want on a post, we feel like we are less, somehow subhuman. 

But you aren’t; you are enough. 

You are a son, a daughter, a friend, a colleague, a human. 

You love and are loved. You create, contribute, make. But you don’t just do; you are. 

You are a person, not just a profile. 

You are a living being. 

Remember that. 

Remember that engagement doesn’t make you enough. 

Being who you are does.

Today is the most powerful day you have

Today you can start changing your life. Right now. This moment.

The career change you wanted to make, the life partner you wanted to find, the blog you’ve talked about starting, today you can do something about them. 

The past needn’t define you. The present is everyone’s opportunity to redefine themselves. 

The future is too cloudy to see it clearly. But what is clear is that the acts done today do mold tomorrow. 

Today isn’t just another day; it’s the story of your life being written with the ink of your actions. 

So act. Begin. Do. 

What will you do today?

One of the best ways to become happy

More. It’s one of the greatest lies there is. 

More money, more sex, more friends, more cars, more education, more this, more that will help me be happy, fulfilled, feel better about myself. But it never does. 

Yes, More can bring happiness. But it’s there; then it’s not. It’s a flash, a moment. Then it’s gone. 

And we are left with this empty feeling, an old ache that no amount of ointment, medicine, gifts, success, fame, can sooth. 

No. More is not what we need. What our hearts long for is this. 

Better. 

You don’t need more crap. Stop buying more. No one needs that much clothes, gadgets, toys, furniture, stuff. Instead, give away what doesn’t add real value to your life.

And, if you buy anything else, only invest in better things, ones that you really need or enjoy, ones that add richness, euphoria, bliss, delight, and function to your life.

We don’t need more friends; we need better friendships, ones that are deep, rich, sacred, trusted. We need intimacy. When they say I love you, it doesn’t sound hollow. It’s as solid as the ground you stand on. It’s real. 

We don’t need more pleasure, finding that next person to bed, the delicious meal to devour, the foreign destination to explore. Sure, they can tickle us, but aren’t we longing for something else, something further away from us, unreachable? 

In my life, I’ve noticed that what I really long for isn’t here, in this world. What I search and pine for always eluded me. It’s a phantom.

It’s like an echo of a tune you’ve never heard, a glimpse of a blinding beauty you have never seen, an aroma of a fare you’ve never tasted; yet, there you are, yearning for it.

It is there. It’s the Better. It’s a world beyond this one, a better world.

It’s transcendent.

When being foolish is the smartest thing you can do

Photo by Ian Froome on Unsplash

We should be foolish more often. For the foolish are the ones who do something new, innovate, change the world. 

It’s true; they do look stupid in the process. People laugh at them, criticize and mock them. “Look at so and so, doing that thing,” the critics will say, “I thought she was smart.”  

But it’s rarely the ones who want to look smart who do something new. It’s the inexperienced. It’s those who are willing to throw themselves in uncharted waters, explore unworn paths, look like a fool.

The ones who make a significant mark on the world didn’t know what they were doing when they were creating the thing that would leave their mark. 

They just did, tried, experimented. They made things up as they went along. 

You need to be foolish enough to fail, quit a good job, look stupid, try something you’ve never done, go somewhere you’ve never been to reach your potential. 

And you have the power to do it. It’s not about intelligence, expertise, or even education. 

It’s about trying, doing. 

In the midst of that, you will learn and grow. 

And it won’t happen in a flash. It’s progressive. 

It starts with small steps, day by day, moment by moment, failure by failure; and something new will emerge.

It will be the thing you create, but you also won’t be the same. You will change.

And the fool will become a genius, the quitter a hero, the failure a success. 

Foolish can be the smartest thing you can be. 

Stay hungry. Stay foolish

Steve Jobs

One of the most powerful things you can do for yourself: Forgive

We all make mistakes, and we forgive others. But often forgiving ourselves is harder. 

But we must. 

Do you know what I’m talking about? It’s that thing you did or continue doing that you can’t release and forgive yourself. Instead, you punish. 

I know all about that. 

Defiance marked my teenage face, as I screamed at her. She stopped speaking. And I started calling my mom unspeakable names, unleashing words like armed missiles. She would flee, and I would seethe. It was ugly; I was ugly. 

In college, I started to follow Jesus and accepted his forgiveness. But I would always say that there was one thing I could not forgive, and that was the way I treated my mom. 

So I held on to my guilt and shame. Unknowingly, I beat myself up, launching armed missiles at myself, perpetuating an old wound. It was ugly; I was ugly. 

Then one day, some guy I knew talked to me. And somehow we got on this subject, and he said something that I would never forget, “If God can forgive you for everything, why can’t you forgive yourself? Are you better than God?” 

I was stunned. 

The truth of his statement and the utter blindness of my behavior and mindset were stunning to me. The understanding washed over me like a wave washes over you on the seashore. 

My burden melted away from me; I was free. 

What I didn’t expect was how much better I was going to feel. The quickness and sharpness of my anger lost its snap and edge. My missiles were disarmed. I felt calmer and was kinder to others, to myself. 

It was work, though. It wasn’t just a one and done kind of thing. I had to continually forgive myself, reminding myself of what my friend told me, remembering that it was foolish to beat myself up over my past failings. 

And slowly over the years, I wasn’t just continually forgiving myself; I forgave myself. 

Forgive yourself. Holding onto your failings, shame, sin doesn’t do anyone good. It certainly does you no good. 

It’s counterintuitive to think that if I forgive myself that I will become a better person. It’s tempting to believe that if I just keep on lashing myself with the past, I’ll get better; but it doesn’t work that way. We don’t get better. We get worse. 

Shame begets shame; unkindness begets unkindness. It’s a cycle–vicious and bloody. 

It takes a radical act to break it.

Forgiveness is the only door through which true healing comes. And that’s exactly what we need to mend our wounds and cease to perpetuate them. We need balm and bandage. We need to forgive ourselves. 

And you will find that you will no longer see yourself as that person who did that terrible thing. You will see yourself as a person who can change. You will no longer be trapped in the cage of the past. You will be released to live anew. 

You will be free. 

Do you know how valuable you really are?

You are more valuable than you think you are, believe you are. 

Even with all of your mistakes, guilt, shame, sin, flaws, and failures, you are worth more than all of the gold in the world. 

The people who told you you are worthless lied to you. They spoke out of their shame and lack of understanding of their value. 

They are wrong about you. 

No matter how many have rejected you, you are worthy: worthy of love, worthy of belonging, worthy of dignity, worthy of being, worthy of forgiveness, deserving of infinite value. 

You are kings and queens, adorned with honor, grace, and light. 

And no amount of makeup, muscle mass, injections, bronzed skin, jewelry, or the like can add to it. The numbers on the scale, in your account, on your blog do not make you better or worse, nor will your accomplishments, what you’ve done, are doing, will do.

You are valuable as you are now, as you were born.

Your value is inherently infinitely valuable. Even with nothing, you are priceless.

I am not lying to you; it is true. This is what I remind myself. 

When I look into your face, I see the face of God.