Being that it rained all weekend, and this should not be misconstrued as a complaint as the mid-west surely needs to moisture to placate last year’s drought, I spent some time completing a small goal. I completed a PowerPoint and a PDF called “My World”. It consists of photographic compilations and words. Some words are mine, some are not. The compilations are my attempts at creative artistic liberties.
We listen daily to the ugliness of the world and sometimes it seems that this ugliness has take precedence over all that is good and beautiful. Here in this PDF, hopefully, is a tiny respite.
Come dance with the west wind and touch on the mountain tops
Sail o’er the canyons and up to the stars
And reach for the heavens and hope for the future
And all that we “can” be, not what we are…John Denver
PowerPoint presentation (with music) that is available soon….
Posted in Art, Writing | Tagged composite photography, creative photography, dreams, enlightenment, free PDF ebooks, inspirational quotes, lifestyle, living, Motivation, Photography, photos, spirit, success, Writing, writing ideas., writing style | Leave a Comment »
Sometimes colors can supersede words. I am putting together a PowerPoint presentation that uses both words and colors.
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged creative photography, dreams, enlightenment, old homestead photos, photo manipulation, Photography, photos, spirit | 1 Comment »
I began my quest towards austerity in the year of 1997. I found myself in a situation where I needed to quickly learn the true meaning between the words “wanting” and “needing”. Though the initial lesson was painful, I did discover that reducing ownership was not only beneficial in my habit of relocating to other destinations, but seemed to quiet the emotional rollercoaster of life itself. Less “stuff” to worry about and replacing ego driven purchases with an “I don’t really need it”, attitude. For sure, there are still small purchases that help soothe the soul, such as some favorite junk foods and of course, my cigars, but overall, I have eliminated much of the overflow. And those things I need to purchase, such as large ticket items, I usually purchase used or spend some time researching and comparing prices. As the large ticket items are few and far between, the time I spent with this task is minimal.
Ownership is a phenomenon unto itself. It is in our lives constantly and dictates much of how we live our lives. Everything from designer clothing to those big toys that reinforces the ego like nothing else proliferates in today’s instant gratification lifestyle… “The bigger, the better” and “keeping up with the neighbors” is an ongoing game of one-upmanship that not only fuels the economy but also fuels people’s passions for living large. And that is good.
On the flip side, I find it almost inspiring to live simply. My treks into civilization and the world diverse consumer products are rare, which, has an advantage of saving me money on fuel and restaurants. I purchase most of what I need for groceries and hardware items from small local merchants, frequent those business which sell used items and do much of my own cooking, though most people will tell me that nuking, frying or grilling my foods leaves much to be desired in the area of culinary experiences.
Another expense I have limited spending a lot of money on is entertainment. Movies are expensive, shows are limited and cultural events are limited to rodeos and pow-wows. And to be honest, both are enjoyable, to a point. There is the state fair once a year and the yearly vacation I take to return to the home where I grew up fills in the gaps. Other than that, I get my entertainment through music, (that I listen to and by those instruments I am learning to play), reading a good book, communing with nature, photography and last, but not least, my attempts at writing.
I have been told many times by those who know me, that I need to “get a life” and I reply that I already have one, albeit, dull and boring in the eyes of those who need constant and exciting stimuli to exist. And I do not judge those who require this form of survival. My opinion is; “do whatever floats your boat and enjoy life”. Life is time limited and when reduced to what is genuinely important in one’s life, extremely satisfying.
Ask yourself this: Where would you go if you followed your passion? How would living your dream change your life? What would you feel and what would your life be like? The answers may surprise you… Now, get a life.
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged dreams, enlightenment, get a life, Life & Living, life changes, lifestyle, living, photos, spirit, success | 4 Comments »
I have a destination in this entry to reach so please be patient. I need to set up the sequence to properly put things in their place. I do this not to elicit sympathy but to build a jumping off point to reach my goal. The goal is one’s purpose in life. This is something I do believe. We all have a purpose in life, regardless of our journeys, we are here for a reason. If not for this belief, life would have little meaning. I know there are other thoughts to this but this is the only one that validates that we have meaning and design.
Recently, I had not been feeling all that well and this malady culminated into a hurried trip to the ER, where I was pricked, prodded and made to run my derrière off on a treadmill. To all this, nothing was discovered except that after years of smoking cigars my lungs are in good shape (95% capacity) and my heart showed no signs of disease or damage. Even though I can now reduce my physical age to that of a 20-year-old (my doctor told me the EKG read like someone in their 20′s), the symptoms persisted and actually increased in severity. I sat and pondered what was happening and after looking at all angles, arrived at a possible answer. I tested this theory and finally discovered what it was and theory this was affirmed by my physician. Low level carbon monoxide poisoning was the culprit.
I considered myself extremely lucky that I survived this event, as I know first hand just how deadly this situation is. Last year, I lost 2 friends to this type of poisoning and they are still highly missed in my life. So, the point here is that though I may consider this a case of very good luck, it really does go deeper.
That is purpose. I am still here because I have a purpose in life that I have yet to accomplish. I do not like to compare, as some will, that purpose and destiny are the same. To my way of thinking (and I use the word “thinking” very loosely), destiny is a preordained path one follows that strips us of our choices in life, while purpose is only that we have a role to fulfill, somewhere along the road of we travel. What my role is unknown to me at present but I truly believe it is there and I am reaching for it, in some manner, and will accomplish this, whether I realize I have or not.
The bottom line and the point I am trying desperately to make is that we all have value in this world. Our presence in life does have meaning. Know that no matter what or where you are in life, you have purpose. You have value and you will eventually discover this. Everything happens for a reason, even if we do not understand why at the point that events occur, we will ultimately discover the reasons and in many cases, know that what did happen makes us stronger in spirit and conviction, happier within ourselves and to others or more successful in reaching for the stars.
“I have always known that at last I would take this road, but yesterday I did not know that it would be today.” —Japanese Haiku
Now, another attempt at creativity: My Back Porch
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged carbon monoxide poisoning, enlightenment, how to find purpose in life, Life & Living, Photography, photos, purpose in life, spirit, what is our purpose in life | Leave a Comment »
“In three words, I can sum up everything I’ve learned about life: It goes on.” Robert Frost
You are the only one who knows what works for you to become more stronger. Whatever allows you to deal with adversity, use it, and always remember that all problems are temporary. When we look back to a problem we had 10 or more years ago, we probably think how little importance that problem had in the big picture of life.
When we face a problem, it often seems big to us at that moment. For those looking at the same issue, they cannot imagine why it as so large to us. The thing is, we differ in how we cope with stressful situations. Resilience comes from understanding ourselves and how we react to our environment and by being stronger, we can approach challenges with strength.
Resilience helps you learn from past difficulties and gain knowledge from those setbacks and failures. Responding effectively to adversity, overcoming challenges, successfully navigating daily life, and dealing with life-altering events create a stronger self resilience.
10 Steps to Becoming More Resilient
|1) Make connections: Valuable relationships with close family members, friends, or others are important. Accepting help and support from those who care about and will listen to you strengthens resilience. Some people find that participating in civic groups, faith-based organizations, or other local organizations provides social support and can help with reclaiming hope. Assisting others in their time of need also can benefit the helper.2) Avoid seeing crises as insurmountable problems: You cannot change the fact that highly stressful events happen, but you can change how you interpret and respond to these events. Try looking beyond the present to how future circumstances may be a little better. Note any subtle ways in which you might already feel somewhat better as you deal with difficult situations.3) Accept that change is a part of living: As a result of adverse situations, certain goals no longer may be attainable. Accepting circumstances that cannot be changed can help you focus on circumstances that you can alter.
4) Move toward your goals: Develop some realistic goals. Do something regularly, even if it seems like a small accomplishment, that enables you to move toward your goals. Instead of focusing on tasks that seem unachievable, ask yourself, What is one thing I know I can accomplish today that helps me move in the direction I want to go?
5) Take decisive action: Act on adverse situations as much as you can. Take decisive actions, rather than detaching completely from problems and stresses and wishing they would just go away.
6) Look for opportunities for self-discovery: Often, people learn something about themselves and may find that they have grown in some respect as a result of their struggle with loss. Many people who have experienced tragedies and hardships have reported better relationships, a greater sense of strength even while feeling vulnerable, an increased sense of self-worth, a more developed spirituality, and a heightened appreciation for life.
7) Nurture a positive view of yourself: Developing confidence in your ability to solve problems and trusting your instincts helps build resilience.
8) Keep things in perspective: Even when facing painful events, try to consider the stressful situation in a broader context and keep a long-term perspective. Avoid blowing the event out of proportion.
9) Maintain a hopeful outlook: An optimistic outlook enables you to expect that good things will happen in your life. Try visualizing what you want, rather than worrying about what you fear.
10) Take care of yourself: Pay attention to your own needs and feelings. Engage in activities that you enjoy and find relaxing. Exercise regularly. Taking care of yourself helps to keep your mind and body primed to deal with situations that require resilience.
Living an Enriched and Fulfilled Life
Count your blessings.
Practice acts of kindness.
Savor life’s joys.
Thank a mentor.
Learn to forgive.
Invest time and energy in friends and family.
Take care of your body.
Develop strategies for coping with stress and hardships.
Source: S. Lyubomirsky, The How of Happiness: A Scientific Approach to Getting the Life You Want (New York, NY: Penguin Press, 2008).
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged becoming resilient, becoming stronger, enlightenment, facing problems, how to become stronger, life changes, Photography, photos | 2 Comments »
I swing between procrastination and being really thorough so either way things aren’t getting done quickly. Freema Agyeman
If it weren’t for the last minute, I wouldn’t get anything done. ~Author Unknown
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Seeing that I have yet to figure out how to place a slide show (including music) on WordPress and not really feeling that I want to unload $99 for the ability to do so, I am dumping some of the work from the slide show into this post. Hope you enjoy. I will continue my quest for something that does not require money to display my hobby.
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged lakota, native american, oil painting, paintings, Photography, photos, spirit | Leave a Comment »