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Wandering Thoughts

Because sometimes hiding behind a pen and paper is the only way we can express our true thoughts and feelings

Month

April 2018

What are You Thankful for?

A few weeks ago, I was talking with someone and she asked me what I was thankful for. I replied with “I’m thankful for my family.” In my mind, my family was a good thing to be thankful for, but lol, she wasn’t impressed.

not impressed.gif

She said, “Well, it’s good to be thankful for your family, but they are not here with you. So what are you thankful for that happened today? Because it’s important to be able to be thankful or happy about things that happen in your everyday life.”

This got me thinking, and I realised that, although generally, I am thankful for many things in my life, I find it hard to see and acknowledge good things in my day-to-day life/activities.

I’ve come to learn that in life, it’s important to find joy in the small things. It is important that you don’t let situations you go through steal your peace and happiness. Life happens in stages and seasons. Sometimes you have a lot of sunshine, and on those days, it’s easy to say “Oh wow, God is good.” However, what happens when the clouds cover the sun and the winds roar? How do you deal and overcome those situations?idk

All my life, people have told me the usual “give thanks in all situations,” but I never understood it. To me, it felt like people were living in denial (in some cases they were tbh, but that’s for another day!). However, I am starting to look at it differently. The idea of giving thanks in all situations isn’t about pretending that x, y, and z aren’t happening. Rather, it’s about acknowledging the fact that although those things are happening, there is still something good in your life.

Deciding to be thankful shifts your focus from all the bad around you to the good. It isn’t always easy to do, but it’s necessary. Why? Well, sometimes the things that aren’t going right might be overwhelming. They might make it seem like there is no hope. If you keep focusing on these situations and their accompanying thoughts, you might end up in a dark place. However, when you are able to look at all the darkness and find a beautiful lone star, that star might be enough to get you going.

It’s easy to say “well nothing good happened today”, but the truth is, the things you are thankful for don’t have to be massive things. You don’t have to win the lotto or get a raise before being thankful. It can be over something as small as what you had for dinner, jollof-rice

 

or an enlightening conversation you had.

Personally, I think choosing to be thankful daily, causes you to analyse your day and find the good in it. Take my day for example. I got to work this morning and everything that could go wrong went wrong. By lunchtime, I was ready to go home and cry. Ordinarily, I would have said, I really don’t have anything to be thankful for. However, as I write this, I’m looking out the window by my desk (it’s a beautiful view) and counting all I have to be thankful for. I somehow got inspiration for this piece, (I was really stressed about what I would write about) I had a nice salad for lunch (I like good food) and to top it off, I found something I had been looking for to complete my experimental setup. So yea, maybe my day didn’t start out great and maybe nothing happened the way I wanted it to, but I can, and I have chosen to look back and be thankful.change

Moral of the story, choosing to be thankful is honestly the only way to keep going on at times. Some call it looking at the bright side, but irrespective of what it’s called, it’s a powerful tool for dealing with trying times.

Finally, lol, coming to this realisation prompted me to join a friend on twitter in finding something to be thankful for, every day. I have found it quite helpful (and challenging tbh) and today, I am inviting you to join me.  Use the hashtag #Iamthankful to post something you are thankful for every day. You can do it for a week, a month the rest of the year; it’s entirely up to you! But give it a try!

Thank you for reading today’s post! I hope you enjoyed it! You can follow me on Twitter @shayrunn

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Beautiful Storms

I was listening to a message on Sunday, and a question popped into my mind. “What if we channelled some of the energy from our frustrations, into finding joy from within?” I know this does not sound easy (trust me, I really do) but think about it for a second.
Often times, life comes at us with potholes, speed bumps and blind spots. This happens at almost every turn in life, and usually when we least expect it. It can seem worse when this happens with something you love or feel passionately about and everything around you appears to be working against you.banging head
At times like this, it is easy to get discouraged and frustrated. It is easy to forget why you started and lose focus on what it is you are doing. When this happens, we tend to get so caught up in trying to solve the problems, in what is not working and in the many things we are yet to achieve, that everywhere we look we only see grey. We focus so much on the negative, that we lose sight of what we are doing, the progress we have made and why we started in the first place. This shift in focus makes it harder to keep going, to push forward and to keep fighting.

Sometimes all we need to do is go back to what really matters, the reasons we started, the foundations of our dreams.

In my line of work, it is easy to get lost in the tiny details. This means it is also easy to get discouraged. When this happens to me, I go back and read my initial proposal. It reminds me of the reasons I started and the goal I am trying to achieve.
The same goes for relationships (any and all relationships). So often we are caught up in the idea of how or what we think a relationship should be. So much so that we get lost, trying to achieve that, instead of enjoying the person’s presence and lose out on enjoying the relationship in front of us.dancing beyonce
Moral of the story, sometimes you just need to sit back and remember why you started. Remembering why you started may not pay your rent, or get you clients, but sometimes it’s enough to give you hope. It is enough to get you to try again.
When our eyes and hearts focus on the storms of life, seeing and enjoying anything becomes almost impossible.
So maybe our minds should not focus solely on what we are trying to achieve or what is not working. Maybe we should focus on the people in our lives and find joy in the now, so we do not get lost in the process of “getting there”.

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Adventures and Borrowed Troubles

 

As a person, I generally tend to get anxious and stressed a lot. Like it’s a normal part of my everyday life. I generally overthink things which in turn means I get anxious, which means I get stressed.

For example, last week Wednesday I had to go to the Nigerian Embassy to apply for a new passport. Would you believe it if I told you I started getting stressed from Sunday? Three days before the actual event? And would you believe it if I told you the night before I barely got any sleep because I was stressed about it? mortified  smh, and why was I stressed? Well, it’s the Nigerian Embassy and I don’t know how to hustle or bribe or do all those things people do to get ahead, so I was there thinking and worrying about how they would not attend to me because I didn’t know anyone or because I couldn’t hustle or do “my brother/my sister” type of talk.

LOL, long story short, it actually was not as bad as I thought it would be and not for the reasons I anticipated.

Or, another example, this Sunday I had to drive into town, now just to bring you up to speed, myself and driving smh, let’s just say we aren’t friendsnot friends. Thankfully, I only knew I would be driving to town from the day before (Saturday) so I had less time to stress and be worried, however, on the day, LOL I was quite stressed, I even told the people who were meant to ride with me to enter at their own risk!

Lmao, las las sha, the whole driving in and out of town was actually fun and, one of the occupants of my car actually ended up inspiring this post. We were talking about something, and she said she looks at life like an adventure.

I laughed at it when she said it, but it’s actually something that I think we, (myself included) can benefit from.

Life in itself is full of many unknowns, many up’s and downs. The way you look at life and the things you go through in life determines how you respond to your situations. If you get stressed over everything you’re going to do, you’ll spend the majority of your life stressed, frustrated and tired. However, if you look at life as an adventure, then you look at each day and each experience as something new and something that could either be fun or challenging. You see the good in the experiences and find ways to have fun even in the most unlikely situations.no way

LOL, now, I know a lot of people (like myself) this probably sounds crazy and maybe even impossible, but it isn’t. Your perception situations will genuinely change the way you experience them.

An example of this is exercise. The way you view exercise will determine whether or not you do it and whether or not you enjoy it. Yes, it’s usually hard work and you might be sore afterwards, but if you view it as something that’s fun and helps relieve your stress, you actually look forward to doing it.

Long and short of the story is this. Life is like a roller coaster, but that doesn’t mean it cant be fun, and it doesn’t mean it cant be an adventure.happy dance

Face each activity and each day with the mindset that “this will actually be fun” you may not know what will happen, but instead of thinking of all the bad possibilities, think of the good. And instead of stressing when things go wrong, find a reason to laugh, smile or be thankful for everything that went right!

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Crisis of Faith

A crisis of faith. A lot of people who believe in a Supreme Being experience this at some point in time in their walk of faith.

Everyone knows I’m a hardcore Grey’s Anatomy fan. I mean, this is my third time watching the show from the beginning and I don’t feel any type of way. LOL. Anyways, for anyone who has been watching the show, you’ll know that April Kepner has been having a major crisis of faith. So much so that she has abandoned everything that she once held dear to herself because of Kepner leaves.gifit. To be very honest I understand and empathize with her character and what she is going through (she’s had her fair share of crap happen to her).  

I always have a problem with how silent Christians are about how hard life can be at times. They tend to paint Christianity as pink roses and blue skies all day every day, but it isn’t. Too often, people turn away from the faith because they think maybe God isn’t really for them. I mean, the pastor said when I receive Jesus life will be rosy, but my life isn’t, so maybe Jesus isn’t really for me. Maybe I’m doing it wrong, and then they walk away.really Or if I do x, y, and z I’ll be successful and live well and be happy, but it doesn’t really work like that.

 

Like April, so many of us grow up following or trying to follow all the commands in the Bible. We don’t drink alcohol, lie, cheat, steal, commit adultery, etc, but somehow, the people who are doing all of those things seem to be making it in life and we are stuck in a rut. It’s devastating. It hurts and it makes you feel foolish. Because it seems like all your “being good” is for nothing.

In my opinion, having a crisis of faith is nothing to be ashamed of. Because almost everyone goes through it and it’s at this point you get to discover for yourself what your faith means to you and why you believe. In the last Grey’s episode, the Rabbi asked Kepner why she expected life to be fair? I mean, if life was fair, Jesus wouldn’t have died on the cross, because that wasn’t fair for him. He said if life was fair Moses would have seen the promised land and on and on he went. Which begs the question of, why do you believe? Is your faith simply because you want to be blessed? Is that why you follow the commands? Pray every day and go to church? Is it for the blessings you want/expect/need? Or is there more?thinking

At some point, you have to question yourself and your faith. You can’t keep doing it because you were born into it. Sooner or later, you need to ask yourself those hard questions and challenge what you have been taught all your life. You need to test the words you’ve been told. Why? Well, if you don’t, when life gets tough and you’re getting knocked over and under, if you don’t know for yourself what and why you believe, it becomes very easy to abandon the faith.

These day’s I’m quite frustrated with where I’m at in my life. However, even when I’m mad at God and tempted to scream, I still trust Him. Because no matter how upset and angry I am, a huge part of me still believes in what He has said concerning me.

I can only say this because my faith is mine. It isn’t my parents or my friends, it’s mine. And that’s why I don’t beat myself up if I don’t read my Bible first thing in the morning every day. Or why I don’t swallow everything “Internet evangelists” spew at me.

It’s also why I can feel like my life isn’t working but somehow trust in this God that I can’t see. Because my faith is mine and I have come to the point where I know and understand that it’s not by how many rules I follow. It’s about a relationship.meredith-alex-feature

A crisis of faith might seem scary or make you feel embarrassed, but don’t let it. Embrace this time of discovery. Don’t be scared to ask questions, it’s the only way you’ll find the answers you’re looking for.

 

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