Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Words I [Try] to Live By

Looking at some of my interests, you might think I'm about 70 years old:  I drink tea, I go to bed early, I wake up early, I read a lot, and there are some sayings from yesteryear that I hold dear.  They are the adages that I gravitate toward and repeat in my head when faced with various challenges.  They are so over-used that they may not mean much to many people anymore, but I like them all the same.  Here are a few.  (Please share some of your words of wisdom in the Comments).

1.  The Grass is Always Greener On the Other Side
Has someone in a different circumstance than you ever automatically told you that your circumstance is "better/easier/luckier?"  The classic example, of course, is the Stay-at-Home Mom and the Working Mom.  I hate to perpetuate this Us vs. Them mentality, but how many times has a mom who works outside of the home full-time told me my job (being a SAHM) is "fun!"  And to be fair, I've heard plenty of SAHM's (me included) bemoan the lack of adult interaction, nice clothes, two-income household, that working moms 'get.'  Let's face it:  working inside or outside of the home all day is hard; there are positives and negatives to both.  There are positives and negatives to most of life's circumstances, right?

2.  Envy is the Root of All Evil
I believe that humans are born good.  That no one is born evil/mean/ill-intentioned.  So when someone is unkind, insensitive, aggressively negative, I often chalk it up to jealousy.  Again, I would caution an envious person to see #1:  No one's situation is perfect; everyone has their challenges, and envy can transform you into a green-eyed monster.  I try hard not to be envious of others, as I do not want to become:

(Well, actually this guy is pretty cute.)

3.  This too shall pass
This helpful little reminder soothes me when I'm facing a challenging behavior with one of my children. Grumpy, clingy, teething?  This too shall pass.  Picky toddler who will only eat hot dogs?  This too shall pass.  3 year old refusing to pee anywhere except in the shower?  This too shall pass.  Followed by a deep breath.

                                 (Hot Dogs:  My one year old will only eat them; my 3 year old won't touch them)

4.  If you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all
I try really hard to bite my tongue if I feel something ugly trying to make its way out.  I wish I could say I always keep my mouth shut, but being human, I occasionally slip and something callous pops out.  But overall, I do try.  When I read hostile comments online, etc., I just think 'why on earth write anything at all about someone if all you can think of is something mean?'  That isn't to say all conflict is bad, or that there can't be constructive criticism-- of course there can be-- but you know what I mean.

I'm far from perfect, but I try to be a good person.  What words of wisdom do you look to when faced with either everyday nuisances or the really BIG ones?

~Frantic Mama

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