What Do You Do With Fear?

Thought this was a really good perspective on fear.


“You have two options:


Forget Everything And Run


Or


Face Everything And Rise”


It the old fight or flight!


– Running may be good when you can avoid a devastating fight and get yourself and your loved one to safety.


– But sometimes you don’t have that option and you have to “fight the good fight” and overcome the devils you face. 


Everyone is afraid of something(s) and/or somebodies. 


If someone isn’t afraid then they are brain dead!


Strengthen yourselves, ready yourselves, and pray. 


What do you fear and how will you face it? 😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Help Is Coming

Help

So I used to have a boss who said something really funny.


He used to go, “Everybody says they want to help us” and then bemoaningly he would seem to repeat that a few times. 


The next part which he didn’t need to explicitly say was that “But no one does!”


It was the words, but also much the tone–yes, the walls could be caving in, the ship could be sinking, everything going up in flames, and of course, everyone is there looking on, shaking their heads pitifully, and seemingly stretching out their hand in an offer of help. 


For this boss though, the help couldn’t come fast enough or with enough resources to help resolve all the issues going on at the time. 


I suppose first and foremost, we have to help ourselves. 


Secondly, there needs to be a core understanding from the beginning of what is really doable and what is simply fantasy fare. 


Third, if help is on the way–great, but it’s got to be timely enough and come with enough raw horsepower to make a genuine difference. 


Finally, sometimes miracles do happen and everything works out great–the day is saved–but even then so much underlying damage has been done that you need to rebuild from the core foundations again. 


And for the next time, you’ll need to ensure capabilities beyond what was ever imagined before. 😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Helping Kids To Stand On Their Own

Bubbles.jpeg

So my wife and I have a longstanding disagreement on the best way of teaching children. 


Her perspective:


TEACH TO CARE – Get the kids to do them for themselves, learn to be independent, by doing they learn to stand on their own two feet, don’t baby them, by teaching them to do for themselves you are caring for the kids, if you jump every time they ask then there is no reason for them to try themselves.


His perspective:


CARE TO TEACH – Do for the kids when they are young, by showing them how then they start to learn how to do it for themselves later in life, children need to be shown love and caring so they can learn to one day care for themselves as well as for others, by loving and giving selflessly to children they learn that they are valuable human beings and grow to a healthy maturity. 


The reality:


CARE AND TEACH – We need to show care and love to children, but also need to teach them to do for themselves. We can’t smother children nor can we send them out into the world unprepared. Care for them at an early age, show them how, and then give them opportunities to do it for themselves and become full adults. 


Like with most things in marriage, and relationships in general, the bringing together of two heads and hearts is better than just one alone. We balance each other, complement each other, and synergize each other–one is alone and deficient, two is together and with G-d making three, it is a whole. 


And always tell your wife she was right. 😉


(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Kid’s Games, For Survival Mostly

Action Figure

Some nights, I dream of fighting and others of running for my very life.  

This last night, I woke up from the dream, and thought how these instincts of fight or flight are so pervasive in our lives, and even in our sleep. 

But more than that, we are literally from the youngest age, programmed for survival (of the fittest). 

Ok, here’s a simple hypothesis about kid’s play:  

Kid’s play is not just play, but rather the preparation through acting out of these basic human survival instincts.

At it’s core, kids games mimic the fundamental human tendencies of fight or flight. 

Think for a second of some of the most popular games that kids play…the ones that mostly have been around forever, and kids from the youngest of ages gravitate too.

Tag — Running after from someone else running after you. 

Hide and Go Seek — Running to hide from someone looking to find you.

Play Fighting — Fighting an opponent to see who is stronger and can overcome the other. 

Action Figures — Often superheroes and villians that once again, fight each other.

Dress Up — Girls often dress as the beautiful princesses to be admired by boys who are in turn dressed as (macho) heroes that seek to protect them. 

Video Games — The most popular ones, first-person shooter (fighting) and racing (running away, faster than anyone else, and over the finish line or into the safety zone). 

Whether we are playing games, sleeping and dreaming, or going about our daily life activities, make no mistake, we are in survival mode. 😉

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

Monday Blues

Monday
This was a funny sign on the large computer display overhung in a prominent medical facility around Washington, D.C. 



I remember as a kid, Monday’s were notorious for being called “Blue Monday.”



Further, Blue Mondays were in stark contrast to Sunday Fundays!



Already on Sunday evenings, many people would start getting the doldrums and sort of want to just mellow after 5 or 6 pm–I think mostly to deal with the anxiety of a new week. 



My father always used to tell me never to worry, instead to have faith in G-d that he will always do what is best for you–essentially, that faith and fear do not mix. 



I don’t know about wanting to “break up” with Monday, but it would sure be nice if the week instead started with Tuesday. 😉



(Source Photo: Dannielle Blumenthal)

Sweet Sweat, Bitter Blood

Sweet Sweat, Bitter Blood

General George S. Patton had a saying that “The more you sweat in peace, the less you bleed in war.”

And while we shouldn’t sweat the small and unimportant stuff in life, we also can’t afford to overlook those things that are really important like our health, spiritual well-being, modest prosperity to care for ourselves and loved ones, and of course ensuring freedom and justice for all people.

It’s a balancing act to do everything and it takes hard work to try and be successful on so many fronts of life.

Some success strategies:

– Be aware of what’s going on around you–we live in a dynamic world and things are constantly changing.

– Work hard to always have a positive impact–it’s too easy to be negative and cynical, give up trying, and throw in the towel.

– Learn from mistakes–everyone makes them.

– Hope for the best, but also train and prepare for the worst–because you never really know.

Overall, I think the picture above says it well: It’s better to sweat in training, than bleed in battle.

So listen to the General: sweat now–really work it and don’t be afraid to push your limits–you’ll be glad you did, when the time comes and it really counts. 😉

(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)

What Happened To My Shoes?

So yesterday, I was on one of the hikes of my life.

After a certain period of time, I said that we had had better head back, leaving ourselves enough energy to make the return trek.

But after a number of times at this mountain, my daughter was determined to make it to the major overlook and do “the full circuit.”

I was so impressed with her determination and enthusiasm that I too caught “the bug” to just do it!

So we went and went–marker after marker–laughing, sort of, about how far we were really going–and would have to return.

But the weather was good–it had cooled off–and we felt that we could get there, and back, with some pushing.

At one point, we hit the summit, and put our rock on the tall pile with the others left by those before us, and we went on to make it to the overlook.

We took some pictures and sat down on the rocks to take it all in–it was magnificent.

Then I casually look down at my hiking shoes, and notice something–the rubber soles had actually come loose from the rest of the shoe–on both feet.

My first thought–great products, not! from this company–darn it. 😦

My second thought–%^(*#$ how am I going to get back in broken shoes?

Making a long story short, the shoes were wobbling over the rocks, tree trunks, and terrain–and I prayed that I did fall or end up getting stuck barefoot in the hills.

G-d was good to me and we made it back and I headed straight to the hiking store to get my money back for the shoes–I literally took them off at the counter and handed them in tatters to the customer service rep.

Now without shoes in the store, I walked around in socks to the shoe section and picked out a new pair–yay!

Some lessons:

– Enthusiasm is catchy and can spark you to do things you wouldn’t normally think you could achieve.

– Never say never–who would think your hiking shoes would literally fall apart in the middle of a hike, but they can and did!

– Always be prepared–mentally and physically–for all sorts of eventualities; life doesn’t just go the way we expect or want.

– Thank G-d for a happy ending–because it could easily go the other way.

– And finally don’t buy brand X for your hiking shoes–they really stink! 😉

(Source Photo: Rebecca Blumenthal)