What Are You Thankful For?

This holiday has been really great, spending time with family and friends. Last night at Thanksgiving dinner we all went around the table and shared what we were thankful for. It was really moving and some people got emotional. One of the things I said I was thankful for was the privilege of being able to sit and have a nice dinner with friends and family. Most people don’t really get to do that. If you have your health, a warm home, food to eat and clothes on your back consider yourself lucky. You are in the top percentage of people who gets to live a blessed live. There are millions of people who would trade us for our first world problems.

Is That Your Real Life or Your Fake Life?

fakelifeonfacebookA co-worker of mine said she hardly ever goes on Facebook anymore. She said she just got sick and tired of seeing baby photos of her friends with their babies. I thought it was pretty funny. She said that they all look so happy and perfect but I don’t know if that’s real – it all looks so posed. I got to thinking about all the times I’ve staged a Facebook photo to make it look good. It makes me think of a photo shoot, or my friend who stages homes for sale to make them look more appealing to the buyers in an open house. I thought about all the selfies I took with my kissy lips imitating someone I saw on MTV.

It’s funny how media influences us and gets under our skin. Makes me wonder, are we imitating life based on what we see in the media or are we living life? I always see millennials glued to their phones on public transportation, even when they’re walking down the street in front of traffic (there’s actually street signs prohibiting this now in Europe and other places in the world). It really makes you think how voyeuristic Facebook is. You can look into someone’s life without them even knowing about it. I’ve creeped on Facebook before, it’s fun and a major source of time suckage.  When you look at it, it’s kind of like your public persona. It’s what you want people to see about your life. But what about the things you don’t want exposed? Those are pretty important too, right? So the question is – are you spending more time on your fake cyber life or your real life?

Elevate the Vote

We vote every day with the choices we make. The only way we are going to change this country is to take responsibility for our lives and actions. Nothing is outside of you, you don’t have to wait and rely on someone in the White House to make your life better or make this a better world. Be careful what the media feeds you, although some people can admit this election has been entertaining to watch.

Here’s an interesting video my friend sent me. It’s a different take on the election.

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At the end of the day, consciousness is what’s going to change this world and make it a better place, not some person sitting in the White House. Choose yourself.

108 Years

Over ten years ago, I was celebrating a rally for the Chicago White Sox. I actually posted a blog about it. This year, the curse has been broken for our Chicago Cubs who won the championship, which only took a 108 years to brake. This was the longest championship drought by any American sports team in history. This proves that slow and steady wins the race. I am not even a huge sports fan. I am a Cubs fan by default because I grew up and live in the north side of Chicago. However, there is something to be said about a town that celebrates its wins with fired up passion. We LOVE our sports teams. We are loyal to them through the test of time, even if it takes over 100 years. I was downtown during the Cubs parade and rally and I have to say it was a colossal event, just absolutely unreal. I have never seen the city like this. It was supposedly over 5 million people gathered in once place, the 2nd largest event gathering in the world. Crazy, right? I have to say it again, there’s no place like Chicago and I am proud to be a Chicagoan. Go Cubs Go!

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Critical Awareness

reality-checkI’m reading a very interesting book called “The Gifts of Imperfection” by Brené Brown, Ph.D. There’s a particular excerpt that I wanted to reference that I felt is relevant to what I’m dealing with right now. She talks about practicing critical awareness by reality-checking. She says from the time we wake up to the time our head hits the pillow we are bombarded my messages and expectations about every aspect of our lives. We are flooded by messages from social media, television, advertising, commercials, and they all tell us what we should look like, how much we should weigh, what kind of car we should drive, what kind of house we should live in, what kind of friends we should have, what kind of partner we should be with, etc. I think that we are bombarded by messages and expectations of living inside of the status quo. When I go on Facebook, I always wonder if that’s really how people live or just a front – is it real life or your fake life that you post about, something that’s fabricated by posed photos.

Here are some questions she provided about reality-checking (we need to be able to ask and answer these questions for ourselves)

  1. Is what I am seeing real? Do these images convey real life or fantasy?
  2. Do these images reflect healthy, wholehearted living? Or do they turn my life, my body, my family, and my relationships into objects or commodities?
  3. Who benefits by my seeing these images and feeling bad about myself? Hint: this is ALWAYS about money and/or control

I think these are great questions to ask yourself.