I Appreciate My Freedom of Choice

Flags at Washington MonumentToday is Independence Day in my country and I’m reminded that “freedom” means so many things to many people.  I do appreciate that I live in a country where the ideals of freedom are engrained in our constitution. The Bill of Rights contains 10 amendments, some of which protect our freedom of religion, speech, and the press.

But this post isn’t about our constitutional freedoms, but rather an appreciation of how I always have freedom in my choices of how I react to any given situation. Observing social media outlets, I see some strong opinions expressed and sometimes hateful remarks towards others who disagree with these opinions. I’m reminded that we all have freedom to express what we believe, but we don’t have to agree with everyone. We get to choose. That’s freedom right there.

I appreciate that when I read or see hateful messages on social media, I can choose to ignore them. Things I don’t want or that cause me to feel negative feelings are called “unwanted contrast” in law of attraction circles. I appreciate the feelings that sometimes result from reading hate-filled comments as opportunities for me to focus in on what I truly want. I appreciate that I have learned the value of unwanted contrast in creating a more happy life.

Anytime we’re faced with something or a situation that causes us to have strong emotions of dislike, anger or other negative feelings, it’s an opportunity for us to exercise our freedom of choice: you can either simmer in those emotions and let them get stronger or practice focusing in on the opposite end of refining what you want. I’ve found that when I find myself getting heated up with passion about unwanted contrast, it’s a good time to jot down the opposite of what I don’t want, which is what I’d rather see and feel.

Once I’ve clarified what I want, I can exercise my freedom of choice in taking softer steps in getting there.  It might mean that I stop looking at social media for awhile, or that I don’t talk or associate with a certain people for awhile (until I can clean up my energy about them), or that I turn off the TV, or that I just distract myself with something else. I might meditate, go take a nap, do something that’s fun, pet my cat, talk to friends and family, or any number of things. I use Abraham-Hicks’ tip of reaching for that feeling of relief to move myself up the emotional scale into a better feeling place. I appreciate these tools for the happiness that I enjoy from using them!

I always have the freedom of choice in my relief from unwanted situations, and you do, too. Some people may interpret my reactions to people, things and situations sometimes as uncaring when I don’t engage in augmenting the negativity of the situation. But I do care – I care how I feel, I care about others and intend for their happiness, too, and I know how my happiness is dependent on me, just as yours is dependent upon you. I care enough to not let outside events destroy my well-being.

We always have a freedom of choice in how we react to anything, even in the most horrific situations. Holocaust survivor Viktor Frankl expressed this beautifully in these statements:

Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms—to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.

When we are no longer able to change a situation, we are challenged to change ourselves.

Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom.

I appreciate my freedom of choice. I appreciate it so much as it’s contributed greatly to my personal growth and made me a much happier person.   I appreciate that you don’t have to agree with me, and that’s just fine. We travel our own journeys in life and I appreciate all the people who have contributed to mine in all ways: the good, the bad and the ugly. For all these situations have served me well in learning how to appreciate any person or situation. I’m happy and looking forward to more freedom of choices in my life for the growth that they foster in me.

 

I Appreciate Websites That Work

IMG_1212 (1)I appreciate websites that work! I’ve had my main website off-line for some months and got some help from my host a few weeks back but some items are still not working.  My pages (albeit 1) keep giving me the error page.

While I could get help for this again, I’ve been busy with other things so I will fix it when I make time for it.  I appreciate that I can relax in the knowing that it will work out in the end.

This unwanted contrast really makes me appreciate websites that work, like this appreciation blog! This free blog has always been rock steady – always there, always working. I appreciate the ease and flow of these free services. I appreciate wordpress dot com for its ease in making a blog or website and I appreciate that I can easily change the look of this site and it all works.

When we run into things we don’t like or want, it’s always an opportunity to appreciate what is working or on what we already have. Technology does make our lives easier in so many ways! Computers, cell phones and social media have added many things to our lives to appreciate.

BUT, writing this quick post has caused me to reflect on the number of times I complain about my computer at work: it’s slow in booting up, it crashes often and forces me to re-start, or a program just freezes. There are a lot of glitches. And I’m not alone, as others in my office complain of similar problems.

What can I appreciate about all of this? For starters, we’ve gotten to know the cool people in our IT department over the years and they’ve gotten away from their desks and traveled to ours. – Stepping away from your desk is a healthy thing. 🙂 – Every staff member in my office can rally together in the collective desire for an improved efficiency of computers. That’s a lot of energy for an improved system just waiting for us to align to.  We get opportunities to share our appreciation of the IT staff when they “fix” the problems, too. Collective appreciation makes everyone feel good! When the computers are “down,” we have opportunities to engage with one another, make a phone call and reach out to someone, step away from our desks, and take a break from looking at the computer screen all day. I can appreciate those moments for that.

So in the spirit of appreciating websites that work, I also am appreciating all that unwanted contrast at work because I also realize how much of what I have at home works like a charm: every time! I have 2 computers, one that is older but still works and a laptop that is fast, efficient, cool and fun. I so appreciate that. I appreciate the fact they are mine. There are people who don’t have computers so I don’t take that for granted.

So the next time I find myself complaining about the lack of speed of my computer at work, I will remember this post and it surely will make me smile as I remember that unwanted contrast is just an opportunity to appreciate what is working. And there’s a lot in my life that works: even if I can’t get to all the pages of my main website yet!

 

 

 

Starting My Morning

How See the light1do you start your morning? Do you begin with appreciation for another day, a prayer or are you still stressing out over the worries of the day before? Or maybe you’re one of those people who is always running late, and you jump out of bed, hurriedly thinking about all the things you need to get done that day.

How you start the day can pave the way for how your day develops.

I’ve found that the way I start my morning really affects how the rest of my day goes. I intend to see the light in everything and in everyone each day and that includes how I start my morning. I appreciate learning this simple technique and discipline that really has made a difference in how I experience my life. My morning start begins like this:

When I wake up, I am thankful for another day. I find things to mentally appreciate before getting to the bathroom. Often I verbalize them out loud. There is power in saying things  out loud.  It doesn’t even take a minute to do this, and I often find myself smiling. It feels good to smile and appreciate, no matter how tired I may be in the morning.

It’s that simple. This simple tip can pave the way for more things to appreciate as the day goes on. It puts me in a good mood.  It affects how I relate to other people. This practice has led me to other practices, including this blog, journals, meditation and pre-paving my day as I go along. I really appreciate that I start my morning with appreciation!

Appreciating My Life

Today I made my newest video, called “I Appreciate My Life.” While I haven’t been posting here or on any of my blogs regularly, I do practice daily appreciation. Sometimes it can be a challenge, when going through perceived “hard times.” Yet that’s the thing: “hard times” are really a perception and I can change my perception about events and my feelings about them at any given moment. I can’t make anyone or any circumstance the source of my happiness. Happiness is an “inside job.”

Today I just got to “work” and re-affirmed that “inside job” to myself, and this video came out as a result.

I Appreciate These Past 41 Days – Day 41

41 Days FB group on wine barrelsToday is the last day of my 41-day challenge and I appreciate that! As part of my Facebook group on “41 Days of Appreciating Rampages,” I committed to blogging here for 41 days with photos. I am feeling quite good, now that the 41st day is here.

I started the Facebook group ten months ago and have done several rounds of “41 days.” After a break when I let myself get a bit too busy, I decided 41 days ago to be more deliberate through this blog on the next round of 41 days. I’m so glad I did! While this is not the end of my daily appreciation habit, there’s something about reaching the completion of something that feels really good. So today, I’m appreciating these past 41 days, the new blogs I’ve discovered from people commenting or liking my posts and most of all, the joy that comes from this daily practice of appreciating.

All are invited to join my Facebook group and post your joys as your inspiration leads you. There are some wonderful people in the group! I love them all and find reading their posts very uplifting.

Appreciating Making Videos – Day 12

I appreciate the ease of technology in making videos! I just love watching videos and can really get inspired by many on YouTube. I love making videos using photography (much of it my own). I get inspired by making videos and can stay up for hours once I get started creating!

This one is a video I did using Animoto. I was inspired to make a video where one could watch and listen to get in that “feel good” emotional grid – a concept from the works of Abraham-Hicks.

I hope you enJOY!

I Appreciate Unexpected Money in the Mail! – Day 4

Photo courtesy of PHPhoto.org
Photo courtesy of PHPhoto.org

Woo hoo! I really appreciate abundance in my life, and how it shows up in unexpected ways. Abundance isn’t just about money but this rampage of appreciation is all about that!

I love how I receive unexpected money when I align myself to a better feeling vibe. I’ve been shifting my vibe lately, making time for myself and deliberately slowing down to experience the “now.” I came home yesterday to find two unexpected checks in the mail!

One was part of a class action lawsuit against a bank I used to frequent. It felt really good since I had no idea I was part of the group and I didn’t have to do any fighting to get it.  Easy! The other was another rebate of an insurance premium because they had “a very good year.” This is the 3rd time that this has happened to me with this insurance company (which just happens to be located in my home state of Iowa) and I have to say each time it’s a joyful surprise.

The amount of money isn’t the issue for my excitement – it’s the excitement and fun of getting the surprise abundance in ways that I was not focusing on!  l absolutely LOVE when that happens! So since I’m appreciating joyful surprises of abundance, that means there’s a lot more on the way. YAY! I can’t wait to see what’s next!

I’m convinced that refocusing myself on writing down my rampages of appreciation daily is a key reason why I’m creating fun and easy joyful surprises.  If you’re just reading my blog now, I invite you to join in on my Facebook group called 41 Days of Appreciating Rampages and appreciate away!