I’m very pleased to announce that the first book I wrote, The History Teacher, has been revamped and is available as a second edition. The story is still the same, but the writing has been tightened up considerably, to make it a smoother read. Currently, it is available in PDF format for downloading to your e-reader.
The following is a story I told the students at the martial arts club where I teach.
Each month at the martial arts club where I teach, we have a theme related to, “feeling good about yourself.” This month, we are celebrating being kind and I’m pleased to say I was recently the recipient of a random act of kindness!
“I am so proud of you!”
Six words that could change a child’s life! Change anyone’s life!
Six words that could wash away self doubt, obliterate the belief that we’re not good enough!
Last year, I posted a blog on seven things parents can do to raise their children to feel good about themselves. I would like to add one more item to this list. In retrospect, it is likely the single most important thing parents can do, and that is to raise their children to ‘live in consciousness.’
Focusing on doing your best has the power to transform your life. It can change disappointment to happiness. It can change feelings of failure to feelings of success. It can transform suffering to joy.
When you focus on winning and being the best, you will invariably be disappointed. When you concentrate on doing your best, you can never fail.
It has been said that as a society, we’re not doing a very good job of raising our children. There is much evidence to support this claim. Far too many children are experiencing neglect, abuse, abandonment, harsh punishment, criticism and the stress of excessive expectations. They’re not being raised to feel loved, wanted, accepted and appreciated and three outcomes of this experience are childhood obesity, video game addiction and a bullying epidemic in our schools.
Seems like a peculiar question to ask, but then it struck me as being odd when I awoke the other morning with a random song playing over and over in my mind. I hadn’t thought about it before, but I’ve noticed it every morning since … different songs playing endlessly.
Where do these songs come from and what is it that causes the mind to operate like an out of control freight train … going wherever it pleases, wreaking havoc in the process?
Last week at my martial arts club I asked the students what would disappear from the planet if we all felt good about ourselves. Here are some of their answers:
- eating disorders
A year ago, we launched a new program at our martial arts club called Let’s Feel Good About Ourselves. This is our one year anniversary, and again this month we are celebrating Feeling Good About Yourself .
Have you ever noticed how much focus we put on things that we don’t want? We don’t want cancer or heart disease, but we keep talking about them. We don’t want bullying or domestic violence, but we keep talking about them.
There is a belief, which is discussed in the movie, The Secret, that what you focus your attention on is what you create, even if it’s something you don’t want. For example, if you focus your attention on getting out of debt, rather than creating wealth, you tend to create more debt. The universe hears the word, debt, so it gives you more debt.
The same applies to cancer, heart disease, bullying, domestic violence and other forms of suffering. The more we focus our attention on these things, the more of it we’re going to create. Have you noticed that despite all the attention we give to cancer and bullying, they’re not going away? In fact, they’re getting worse.
What is more, our current efforts to eradicate the things we don’t want are fractured. We have one group fighting breast cancer, another fighting ovarian cancer, another fighting prostate cancer, another fighting bullying another fighting sexual assault and so on and so on. And each of these self interest groups is working independently to raise awareness and funds for research, early detection and treatment.
What we want to do at Georgina Family Martial Arts is bring all of our efforts together to create a unified focus on something positive.
Of course, this doesn’t mean we ignore the things that are causing suffering because clearly we have to deal with them. Nor does it mean we want to diminish the efforts of all the people who are working hard to eliminate cancer and bullying and the like. We’re just suggesting a different approach, one that puts all of our focus on what we want, rather than what we don’t want.
The fundamental premise of Let’s Feel Good About Ourselves, is the belief that the most important thing for our health and happiness is how we feel about ourselves. What is more, if we all felt good about ourselves all the things we want to eliminate likely wouldn’t exist. When people feel good about themselves, they don’t mistreat others, therefore, bullying, abuse, domestic violence and all forms of conflict likely wouldn’t exist. They also eat healthy, therefore, obesity, heart disease, cancer and other forms of disease likely wouldn’t exist. They also don’t try to numb their pain with drugs and alcohol, therefore, addictions likely wouldn’t exist. They also don’t commit crimes, therefore, crime, government corruption and corporate greed likely wouldn’t exist. They live in the present moment, therefore, worry and stress and stress related illness likely wouldn’t exist. They want abundance for all, therefore poverty likely wouldn’t exist. They are good stewards of the environment, therefore, pollution and over-development likely wouldn’t exist.
We believe that if everyone felt good about themselves, we would live with love, compassion and acceptance, and therefore, suffering likely wouldn’t exist.
The intention of our ‘Let’s Feel Good About Ourselves’ program is threefold:
First, to bring awareness to what it means … it means that you feel lovable, worthy, good enough and empowered … it means that you have a positive self image.
Second, to bring awareness to how we create it … by how parents raise their children, by how we behave and by how we react to our experiences.
Third, to bring awareness to the implications of feeling good about yourself, both for ourselves and for society as a whole.
Each month we will have a different theme … this month the theme is simply Feeling Good About Yourself Awareness Month … and we invite you to celebrate it with us. Here’s what you can do:
- Read the articles relating to feeling good about yourself. If you’re a parent, we urge you to read ‘Raising Children to Feel Good About Themselves.’
- Read a self help or spiritual book.
- Make an extra special effort this month (and every month) to be kind to people and to be honest, generous, helpful and patient.
- Make it your intention this month to express gratitude every day for all the goodness in your life.
- Eat healthy.
- Do the things you love to do … spend time with your family.
If you like what we’re doing, tell your friends about it. The more people who are focused on feeling good about themselves the more positive energy we create.
If you have a story you would like to share, please feel free to leave a comment. I’d love to hear from you!
You yourself, as much as anybody in the entire universe, deserve your love and affection … Buddha.
Suffering is a choice. One can be in pain but not suffer. Unknown.