Happy Thanksgiving Week Soul Food Friday!

This week:

Consider some non-material soul-filling gifts

Repurpose some everyday items found in elementary school to create a grab bag for the greater good, (thanks Mrs. Howard)
Enjoy a twist on the thanksgiving theme & experience some blessings based on the Platinum Rule:

“Do unto others, as others would have done unto them”

 For those of you that enjoy the wonder of nature, I am sure you will be awed by the link below

This amazing video was taken in Ireland, on the River Shannon:

http://vimeo.com/31158841

Thanks Jessica

Peace, Love and Well-being…

Neville

Holiday Season Giving and Receiving 

It is better to give than receive

A powerful human sentiment that ties nicely with the spirit of the holidays regardless of your beliefs and values 

An interesting question to ponder then is what is the most valuable gift you could give to others this year?

Here are some gifts options for you and yours…

  

*** The FIRST gift is the gift of time.

 “Just being with someone can be of great comfort to that person”. 

*** The SECOND gift is the gift of good example

Most people learn fundamental attitudes by observing other people. 

*** The THIRD gift is the gift of acceptance

People often begin to change when they realize they’re being accepted for what they are. 

 *** The FOURTH gift idea for those who are so often busy and distracted these days is the gift of privacy – that is, time of one’s own.

Too often, we smother people with questions and demands on them and their time. 

*** The FIFTH is the gift of seeing the best in people.

“How can you see a ‘fine’ picture of someone close to you – when that person doesn’t always seem to be so fine?

Often you will see what you expect to see.” 

 *** The SIXTH gift is the gift of self-esteem

Not crippling others by nagging or criticizing – especially those we love. That’s particularly a tough one for millions of people every day. 

 *** The SEVENTH gift,  might be the giving up a bad habit.

*** Number EIGHT is the gift of self-disclosure.

Bottling up feelings and resentments deprives the other person of truly knowing who you are. 

 *** The NINTH gift idea is the gift of helping someone learn something new.

It is an investment in their future happiness. 

*** The TENTH gift is the gift of really listening.

“Few of us know how to truly listen in an effective manner”. 

*** The ELEVENTH is the gift of fun!

It’s important to help those close to you to find the fun in ordinary, small events. 

*** Finally, the TWELFTH gift is letting others give to us.

 “When we let others give to us”, “and when we can accept their gifts in a gracious and mature manner, we may be giving them one of the most important gifts of all.” 

Need something a bit more tangible?

May the intrinsic value in the following items remind us simpler times and richer cultures, where each is affirmed and valued just for who they are, and where the cost of the gift had no bearing on its real value… 

If you are so inspired, you can actually create a “grab bag” of many of the following items and “gift them” to other like-spirited souls. They may prefer an iPhone 4s but they would probably benefit more from these: 

AN ERASER- Everyone makes mistakes. There will be times when we need to try something more than once-maybe many times, before we are successful.

Here’s to erasing all of our mistakes in the past year, AND learning from them 

A PENCIL- We all have good ideas. Some ideas are really great and should be written down so they are not lost or forgotten.

Here’s to penciling in your great ideas and turning them to actions in 2008 

A PAD OF PAPER- Communication is very important. We express ourselves in many ways including writing and pictures.

Here’s to improving the quality of our communications with those around us, through active listening, open sharing, and a genuine desire to hear each other’s story 

ONE BAND AID- The Band aid reminds us not to hurt others.

Here’s to Good Thoughts, Good Words & Good Deeds, and the ability to promptly apologize if we are hurtful, as well as fully forgive if we are hurt 

TISSUES- When one of us is sad, it affects us all. Let the tissues remind us to be aware of and sensitive to each other’s feelings.

Here’s to openly expressing our emotions without fear of judgment & letting others “let it out” 

A RUBBER BAND- Routine is increasingly part of our daily lives.  When changes occur-by design or default-let’s remain flexible and like the rubber band not get bent out of shape.

Here’s to flexibility in daily life in mind, body & spirit 

ONE BUTTON- Respecting one another is a hallmark of a highly developed culture. Sometimes, it may be difficult to think of something nice or appropriate to say. In these cases, the best thing to do is to simply “button our lips” and keep our mouth shut. Whoever said, Sticks and stones can break our bones, but words can never hurt me” didn’t know what the heck they were talking about. Here’s to honoring the absent and knowing when to button our lips 

HUGS & (Hershey’s) KISSES- Sometimes a smile or hug can make the difference between an “okay” day and a “great” day.

Here’s to not being stingy with our smiles and hugs, and knowing the right time, place and way to deliver them with mucho gusto! 

HAND- Raise a hand and help others.

When someone offers you a hand, take it.

Here’s to those that rise by lifting others, and to those who know how to ask for a hand when they need it

  • Total value of each individual item – Pennies
  • Total cost in buying a bag of each for those close to you – Dollars
  • Total return on investment of applying these simple principles in a complex world- Priceless!

 

In the spirit of Thanksgiving let’s BE THANKFUL

Be thankful that you don’t already have everything you desire. 
If you did, what would there be to look forward to? 

Be thankful when you don’t know something, 
for it gives you the opportunity to learn. 

Be thankful for the difficult times. 
During those times you grow. 

 Be thankful for your limitations, 
because they give you opportunities for improvement. 

Be thankful for each new challenge, 
because it will build your strength and character. 

Be thankful for your mistakes. 
They will teach you valuable lessons. 

Be thankful when you’re tired and weary, 
because it means you’ve made a difference. 

It’s easy to be thankful for the good things. 
A life of rich fulfillment comes to those who are also thankful for the setbacks. 

Gratitude can turn a negative into a positive. 
Find a way to be thankful for your troubles, and they can become your blessings. 

-Unknown

Here are some blessings applying the platinum rule: “Do unto others, as others would have done unto them”… 

For the sacred:
“If the only prayer you said in your whole life was, ‘thank you,’ that would suffice.”
  ~Meister Eckhart
 
For the secular:
“The Thanksgiving Day is a jewel, to set in the hearts of honest men;
But be careful that you do not take the day, and leave out the gratitude.”
  ~E.P. Powell

For the minimalist:
As we express our gratitude, We must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.”
  ~John Fitzgerald Kennedy
   
For the optimist:
“An optimist is a person who starts a new diet on Thanksgiving Day.”
  ~Irv Kupcinet

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