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Posts Tagged ‘growth’

Note: Cross posted from STATIC Youth’s Weblog.

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altarboy2 Friday was a god day for me, I had time to catch up on some of my reading. I subscribe to 3 different Catholic newspapers and 3 different magazines, two Catholic and one political. The problem is time, when do I have time to read them all. Well Friday night I was able to slam through all the newspapers, than Saturday a new one arrived… UGH! But such is life.

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Note: Cross posted from STATIC Youth’s Weblog.

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calledtoministry This past weekend I spent my time reading and listing to Catholic radio. Of course I cleaned the house, did my wash and other such tasks, but I spent a lot of time sitting and reading. It was nice, I have not had a lot of time to do that, or should I say I have not made time to do that.

Note: Cross posted from STATIC Youth’s Weblog.

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blog%20board It has been sometime for me to blog here on You Can Be New, the last posting was a found article I wanted to share, not truly my own work. I have started to blog again on my other site, STATIC Youth, and have really enjoyed the process. I forgot how much I enjoyed the process.

I think that is true with most things we do, we need to stop to understand how much it truly means to us. Their is the old saying, if you love something let it free, if it returns than the love is true. Or something like that. I think this is what applies to my blogging. I was blogging for two blogs everyday, writing the curriculum for my company and writing and teaching at my day job. I think the writing and creative thinking parts just kicked my butt. I tried to keep it up, but found that my ideas were lame, at best, and that my writing was not truly what I was proud of. Now some will say that none of my writing is anything to be proud of, and that my be. But I have a standard, and I like to keep to it.

I have seem myself grow through the blogging process. Over the past few days I have been re-reading some of the stuff I wrote, and for the most part was pleased with it all, well except for the spelling mistakes. But I also noticed a growth in the writing from month to month and year to year. I was proud of my growth and pleased with my convictions. So I have decided to blog once again.

I am not sure if the You can be New blog will be updated daily or not, I am concentrating on the STATIC Youth blog more, I am concentrating on my faith more. This blog deals with my faith, but in a indirect way, here I am looking at ways to improve my life, too find ways to expand my experiences were-as in the STATIC Youth blog I am taking a more direct look at my faith and how my faith effects life, world and others.

So for anyone who misses my blog’s I am back, and for everyone else… Here I am…

Paul

Excuses Begone!: How to Change Lifelong, Self-Defeating Thinking Habits

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I remember learning in one of my psychology classes that one of the dangers of helping a married couple reconcile is that once they do, they may no longer wish to stay together. That sometimes when we “grow” and “change” we end up growing and changing right out of the relationship. It’s the risk of the change.

I would think that the same can be said for all relationships, that when one or both change there is always a risk of growing truly apart. If one grows and the other does not, it is often times hard to deal with, the person who has moved on finds it hard to understand why you have not and the ones who have stayed are overwhelmed with your changes and feel left behind. So the fact that we change does not mean our life will be an easy road, fact is that often times changes make our life more complex not less.

So why bother?

In truth the answer is truly up to you, bother or not, change is always apart of our life, so if you choose not to, others will choose to. Growth is what we are created for, it is how we are hard wired, we will change and grow or we will be left behind.

 

Paul

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What ever happen to  the concept of responsibility? It seems we have lost that somewhere along the way to enlightenment. As we grab onto those lofty ideas of inner growth and walk down the path of opening our minds, we seem to forget that we have an obligation to self, that we are responsible for our own actions.

In the modern world, all-to-often we hear people state “Not my fault”, “I didn’t know” or even “But, I wanted too” or something along those lines. the basic underling theme of each of them is the same, the lack of personal responsibility.

And the sickening part of it all is that we as a culture now think this is an appropriate response. We now expect and accept the concept that it was out of our control, that we had nothing to do with it, that a great force overtook us and we could not stop it, we were at it’s mercy, that we are the victims (because everyone loves being the victim).

My 17 year old nephew is a perfect example, or for that matter, any teen will prove the point. Ask a very direct question, such as did you_(fill in the blank)_? and 9 times out of 10 you will get the response of an excuse, a reason why they did not.  The question required a simple yes or no, nothing more nothing less, but what you get is reasons why they had no control over the situation. Now you may be saying, well that’s just teens, they all do that… And I will respond by saying, Yes you are correct they all do do it, and that’s my point! We, the adults, allow them to, because we, the adults, accept that, we nurture it in them. If we, the adults, did not allow it, than they, the teens, would not do it. Example, when my nephew, or any other teen, responds to a simple yes or no question my response is “That’s not what I asked you”. I didn’t ask for the six million reasons why the dishes are still in the sink, or why you lost your phone or anything else, what I asked was “Did you _____?”. Simple question requiring a simple response. And the funny thing is, he now knows (for the most part) that he needs to respond to the question, and not play the victim of his own lack of responsibility, in fact, the scary part of all this is, that most youth I deal with learn this lesson rather quickly from me, because I do not allow them to skip over personal responsibility when they are responding or talking to me.

But as long as we, the adults, allow them to continue placing the blame elsewhere, as long as we accept and expect them to do so, they will continue to do so. But, and this is a big but, we must also take stock in our own lack of personal responsibility. We as adults do the same exact thing, I wave worked with and still do work with many who never take the blame, the blame is always place on someone or something else. I have the same exact conversations that I have with my nephew with adults, ask a yes or no questions get a five minute dissertation on why they did not or could not or would not, but the same theme runs through it all, it is never, under any circumstances there fault. Funny how that works, with so many perfect adults in the world one must wonder how we ever got so screwed up.

The challenge before us is one of paramount responsibility, in a world were the Nanny State is on the rise, and were the populous wants and expects the government to take care of them from birth to death we are entering in to a world of no responsibility. We are entering a unprecedented time in American History, it is a defining moment for us, as our President (Mr. Obama) likes to keep telling us, and he is correct! The defining moment is now, and it is all about responsibility, our own personal responsibility. We have to decide if we want to keep passing our responsibility to the government or do we want to keep it for ourselves. Do we want to be truly free (keeping our own personal responsibility) or do we want to be slaves (giving all our responsibility to the government).

Personal responsibility is walking towards a slow death, so far it has been an uphill walk, but we are now at the top of the hill, and what we choose to do at this moment in our history will determine the direction and speed of our walk. If we choose to continue to negate our personal responsibilities we will run, not walk down the back side of the hill in to slavery to the government, but if we choose at this pivotal time in our history to turn back towards they way we came from, if we choose to re-accept our personal responsibilities, that we can start our slow, responsible walk back down the front side of the hill towards our personal freedoms once again.

We have a choice to make, it is our responsibility to make the correct choice, not only for our today’s but also for our children’s children’s tomorrows.

Paul

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It seems I have gone blog crazy, I have 3 blogs going now, this one, You can be new, and two others, STATIC Youth and Faith and Life. The Faith and Life blog is the latest blog I have started. Each blog had a purpose, each one helps me examine a different part of my make up.

Each blog represents a side of me that I feel in need to dive in to a little bit more deeply, but at times all 3 cross over each other. For example my new blog, Faith and Life is the more political side of me. But readers of this blog or my STATIC Youth blog will know that I have made political statements here. Were-as this blog, You can be new, is more of a blog for my self-help look deep with in you side of me, but that has also spilled over in to my STATIC Youth blog and I am sure it will slip in to my new Faith and Life blog before long also. The STATIC Youth blog is my Catholic faith blog, allowing me to share my faith with the world, but as you know my Catholic faith has entered in to discussions here and it is part of my Faith and Life blog also.

I say all this not to just shamelessly promote my 3 blog, but to illustrate a point. We are made up of different part, but each part is not separate from each other. I have three interest that truly define me, my faith, my need to help others and my political values, each is unique but each is also me. I would not be the same person I am today if anyone of them were not part of my being.

Our DNA defines us, our eye color, hair and body shape, our parents mold us into good little people, teaching us moral and our faith and society leans onus to conform to the norms of the times. But in the end it is us who truly defines us, we choose to follow our parents lead or if we will bend in to social norms, it is us, our individuality, that creates new possibilities for ourselves.

All three parts of me, represented by my blogs, help to shape me, guide me and in some ways define me, but only if I allow them to. My parents help create them, my faith help shaped them and the social/economics of society help bend them in to what we see today. But ultimately I allowed them to.

How can I say this, what proof do I have that in the end it is my choice. I have 4 case studies, my brothers and sisters, all raised by the same two parents, all raised with in the same faith and similar social/economics as me, each of us are different, we each chose how we would allow each force mold us.

So yes I am at times divide between my Faith, political and self reliance sides of me. Sometimes what I write in one blog may seem like it is in opposition to what I wrote in another blog. But in truth it can not be in opposition with anything else I write, it is just taken out of context. When I write purely for one blog, not allowing my other 2 sides to enter in to the conversation I create a conflict of sorts. This conflict is internal, wanting to establish the links between all three major forces in my life. This is a choice I make, not allowing the overflow of the other two in to what I am writing. I want to allow myself the freedom to dive into the topic unhindered by my own confines, to allow the organic growth of the thought, and than at a latter time see how it fits in to my over all person. No conflict, only growth.

So please if you get a chance check out my other two blogs, let me know what you think, and tell your friends to give me a read, who knows maybe someone somewhere will like what I wrote, they may even think I am smart. But I am not holding my breath for that, I don’t write for others, but for myself.

Paul

STATIC Youth  —  Faith and Life

 

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How often do we participate in a conversation, but in truth we are only really waiting for our chance to speak? I know I do this, especially when it is a heated debate, I want so badly to speak my mind. I have been working on not doing that to much, but its like a favorite candy bar, you walk by it and have to have it. I just can’t always control myself, i just have to have that candy, i just have to get my argument out, its all the same thing to me.

We know, just from our own experience that when people listen to what we have to say and we listen to them, the debate or argument or just plan conversation goes better. There is a natural pace and flow to it. Now to listen does not mean agree with, but to just listen and take it in, allowing it time to settle in your mind and to form a thought.

Listening is a skill we all need to improve at, we all need to be reminded every now and than to just shut the mouth and open the ears. To listen to the sounds of everydayness and to the voice of reason. Listening is not just a skill for conversations with others, but it is also a skill for conversations with nature and self. The quit time we spend just sipping our coffee in the early mornings, or out on the front porch with a cup of tea at dusk.

The skill of listening to the silence is difficult, but not unattainable. Simon & Garfunkel stated it best in there song, The Sounds of Silence:

Hello darkness, my old friend
I’ve come to talk with you again
Because a vision softly creeping
Left its seeds while I was sleeping
And the vision that was planted in my brain
Still remains
Within the sound of silence

The seeds that are planted when we listen to the silence of self and nature can grow in to the changes we dream of, the new creation of self, only if we can learn to listen to the silence of self.

The task is daunting the reward is great. The other day I posted about self time, and in the past i have written about this topic and I will come back to it often. It is a skill that seems to be lost in a modern world where silence is looked at as unproductive or a waste of valuable time.

In days gone by silent time was treasured and looked upon as a treasure for only the well off. In today’s world we look at silence as a sign of laziness and a sign of the less fortunate.

Look at any great leader of the spiritual ways, Jesus, Buda and Krishna all call for and practiced moments of silence. As a Catholic we have moments in our celebration of of Mass that incorporate silence (or it should be, but not all Churches recognize this) we have seasons that calls us to prolonged silence and intense soul searching. The Church sees the importance of listening to the silence.

Listing to the silence of the soul allows you the intimacy of self, the oneness of time and growth and the universality of joining in the the silence of the ages. Silence offers a sort of magic that transcends time and space, giving us the freedom to listen to the voices of the past or future with the present always there.

I am not saying that through silence we can communicate with the dead or travel through time and space, but I am saying that through silence we free our mind to imagine the possibilities of our many tomorrows by  listening to the echo’s of yesterdays.

I have fixed many a problem through the quietness of listening to the silence, allowing my mind to freely flow over the waves of nothingness. Creating a openness that allowed the sounds of reason enter into my soul planting the seeds of forgiveness or love, plucking the hatred out by its roots and allowing the waters of creation to feed me.

So today, sit and have a conversation with the silence, open your ears and listen to the nothingness of the universe and hear the voice of God speaking.

Paul

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