Five Minute Friday: “Close”

Looking for a reason to write but not sure where to start? Join me and hundreds of others in Five Minute Fridays started by Lisa Jo-Baker. The key is to write for five minutes based on Lisa-Jo’s prompt “No extreme editing; no worrying about perfect grammar, font, or punctuation. Unscripted. Unedited. Real.”

So here we go: “Close”

Well, it’s been on my mind and I was going to wait until next month, but “close” is a good start. I’m reminded of the closeness I had with my father. It wasn’t about the toys he bought when I was younger, it wasn’t the birthday gifts or anything like that. Honestly, he didn’t know my birthday. And it wasn’t that we had such amazing conversations.

But the closeness I felt with my dad came from him being him in the moments we shared…

close

 

The After Five: Hm, yeah, I think I’ll have to wait on this one. So instead, I’ll just share this… Being close to someone doesn’t come from the material things shared, but from the time spent with someone. It comes from the little things they do to let you know they care. It comes from the conversations of few or many words, but more importantly, it comes from a special bond, a special connection that allows you to sit for hours, even without words and know that you are special or you are loved. Being close to someone brings a sense of comfort. You don’t have to wear the day-to-day masks that we often adorn at work or basically around people we’re not close to. Closeness brings a sense of vulnerability because you can simply be you. There’s no judgment. There’s no scolding, but there is truth.

Whoever it is that you feel a closeness to, continue to let them know. Continue to make good memories.

As it is Memorial Weekend, for those who’ve lost the person(s) you were close to, I hope and pray you have good memories to cherish. And if you still have that special someone (mom, dad, friend, sister, brother, etc.) just remember it’s the little things that count!!!

Blessings to All!!!

Five Minute Friday: “Grateful”

Looking for a reason to write but not sure where to start? Join me and hundreds of others in Five Minute Fridays started by Lisa Jo-Baker. The key is to write for five minutes based on Lisa-Jo’s prompt “No extreme editing; no worrying about perfect grammar, font, or punctuation. Unscripted. Unedited. Real.”

So here we go: “Grateful”

As usual, I will be a bit transparent here as are others through their writings. I wish I could say that I “Always” have a grateful spirit, but of course I’d be lying. Some days things happy [happen] and I’m like “Really?” I often have to scold myself when the thought “Why me?” begins to surface by simply saying, “Why not?”

I try to lead a very discreet life with hopes to avoid any drama, etc., etc., but “ding-ding”, laughing at myself… as if that really stops things from happening in life. Uh, yeah – good try.

No, actually, as much as I’d like my life to be quiet and drama free (and I mean that in the sense that I didn’t have to worry about how I was going to pay something this month, how many clients will I gain this month, will I have enough time for this or that), I realize that it is often in the chaos of life or the difficult times that I realize how blessed I am, but even more so…

The After Five: I realize that it is the not so good times that opens my eyes to what really matters in life. Sometimes losing things is not so bad, not only because it makes room for something else, but it brings into perspective that maybe it was something that wasn’t needed in the first place. That’s when I become grateful for those revelations, that certain things in life I thought I needed or felt I could not do without, I really didn’t. I’m thankful that it reminds me that my focus should be on God and not the things of this world as he will surely supply all my needs. I’m grateful that God loves me enough to teach me even simple lessons. I’m grateful that as much as he gives, he takes away, not to punish me or make me feel like a failure, but to make room for me to grow in another area. I’m most grateful that with each new day, it’s an opportunity to do better than the day before or try it all over again with hopes of getting closer to where God needs me to be.

Blessings to All!!!

GRATEFUL

Five Minute Friday: “Mess”

Looking for a reason to write but not sure where to start? Join me and hundreds of others in Five Minute Fridays started by Lisa Jo-Baker. The key is to write for five minutes based on Lisa-Jo’s prompt “No extreme editing; no worrying about perfect grammar, font, or punctuation. Unscripted. Unedited. Real.”

So here we go: “Mess”

So I had to chuckle to myself when I saw this word. MESS!!! Well, here’s a bit of transparency. I’m intimidated by mess. I don’t function well in mess. I shut down in Mess.

I spend hours on Meticulous and Perfectionism. And funny how even after double checking not once but twice (and sometimes more), I still manage to find something wrong.

Over the years I’ve read and taken on the perspective that mess often signifies chaos or confusion. So I think it’s fair to say that with that perspective, I’ve become a bit too concerned about what others would think if I was no [not] so put together, or on point with certain things.

Well…

 

mess

The After Five: I will be the FIRST and I’m certain not the only one or the last to tell you that BLAH!!!! Meticulous and Perfectionism will literally drive you crazy!!! I’m sure there’s someone out there who will agree. 🙂 This hit me the most when I was an instructor for the first time and felt the need to read and do as much as possible to make sure students were getting what I considered a valued education. So if that meant staying up till 3 or 4 in the morning with 2 hours of sleep before starting the day, then hey, “It’s not about me, it’s all about them.” Um, while that may be true in certain circumstances, any obsession with something often overwhelms the true passion, joy, and purpose of it. And while I tried to “fake it” on the front line, behind closed doors, yes, I was a Mess!!! It was not until I lost my job, with way too much time on my hand, (but GREATLY needed), that I started to accept the fact that I don’t have to be perfect, I don’t have to know everything and I don’t have to be “All that” to people in order to satisfy unrealistic expectations.

To go back a bit, before I lost my job, I was working almost 14 hour days, 4 days a week, on minimal hours of sleep and not to mention the job issues itself, and it became so overwhelming (with noticeable health issues), that I literally said to God I just couldn’t do it anymore. (another topic for another day, I was hoping that that door closing meant another one would readily open, but that was not the case….).

So long story short, it often times takes a messy situation to open our eyes to new revelations that we would not have seen otherwise. Mess happens. It’s not meant to be permanent, but I do believe it often serves as the foundation upon which many of  our blessings are formed. If mess didn’t happen we’d never feel the need to assess situations, consider changes and therefore make room for more growth.  So, slowly but surely, I’m still learning. 🙂 And OAN: That, my friends, was the Mess that led to me starting my own professional services. So mess is not a lost cause (and I’m now reminded of the “Paint” post- it’s all about how we choose to view things).

Have a Good Night Y’all!!! 🙂

 

Five Minute Friday: “Glue”

Looking for a reason to write but not sure where to start? Join me and hundreds of others in Five Minute Fridays started by Lisa Jo-Baker. The key is to write for five minutes based on Lisa-Jo’s prompt “No extreme editing; no worrying about perfect grammar, font, or punctuation. Unscripted. Unedited. Real.”

So here we go: “Glue”

Well, the first thing that comes to mind when I see this word is family. We all have that one person that (of course depending on your family dynamics) is the glue that holds everyone together. It’s all good as long as they’re here, present in this world. It’s all good—we all have that one person that is the reason for family gatherings, that helps to keep the peace. But again, that’s all while they are present.

But when they’re gone… Here’s what I want others to ponder that are in that position. You are the glue that holds your family together.

Please give them something that they can hold on to beyond your existence. Something of value that reminds them that this is what family is all about. Give them something that will bind them together even when you’re not here.

I wonder if families have these type of conversations. Because when the glue is gone… Wow! You’d be surprise[d] [at] how things are handled.

So again, if you are the glue to your family, talk to your family members. Give them nuggets of wisdom about the importance of family and not letting anything come between them, no matter what.

gluesource

Five Minute Friday: “Paint”

Looking for a reason to write but not sure where to start? Join me and hundreds of others in Five Minute Fridays started by Lisa Jo-Baker. The key is to write for five minutes based on Lisa-Jo’s prompt “No extreme editing; no worrying about perfect grammar, font, or punctuation. Unscripted. Unedited. Real.”

So here we go: “Paint”

I’m thinking to myself, it’s going to take me five minutes just to think of something to say and go figure. “What is the picture I want to paint?” My mind is battling between keeping it simple or being all philosophical.

I think – hmmm.  What’s coming to mind is how many of you have probably thought this same question. What is the picture I want to portray? (more along those lines). And I think it’s fair to say that we think on this question too much or become way too analytical and we actually overdo things that only require simplicity.

We try too hard to please people and we end up stressed. We try too hard to maintain a certain image in the public only to break down to pieces behind closed doors.

When teaching Psychology, I asked my students a question. Who would be left if you lost everything you had? Some had never pondered on this before. Some has experienced it before and yet some, unfortunately, did not appreciate the (loss of word here) behind the question.

Sometimes we have to stop, be still and become a blank canvas. And let the Master paint HIS picture!

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The After Five: For a moment there I was thinking there wouldn’t be an “After Five” but yeah right. A couple of more things that came to mind. Whatever picture you paint for your life, not everyone will have the eyes to understand the uniqueness of you!  I think of artists, and I don’t know about your experience but the ones I’ve met have a very “eccentric” personality. What I like about most is that they don’t necessarily see flaws, but instead opportunities. Sometimes the wrong stroke of the brush momentarily pauses their creativity and then a whole new picture comes to fruition that is even better than the original thought.

So where is this leading to? Sometimes we have good ideas and when they don’t pan out as we want, we often times force them to. But if, again, we stop, we may realize that things don’t always pan the way we wish because there’s an even better/greater idea. And because we are all unique in our own ways, not everyone will embrace your portrait, but that’s okay because we can’t all be the same! Love who you are because you HAVE a place in this crazy, mixed up world. And your place is a piece that ties others together.

 

Happy Friday All!!!!

~~ALS Coach Koko~~

 

Five Minute Friday: “Joy”

I’ve been reading WisdomfromaFather’s Friday posts for a while now and thought the idea of Five minute writings was neat. So here I am joining hundreds of others in Five Minute Fridays started by Lisa Jo-Baker. The key is to write for five minutes based on Lisa-Jo’s prompt “No extreme editing; no worrying about perfect grammar, font, or punctuation. Unscripted. Unedited. Real.”

So here we go: “Joy”

Admittedly, when I first looked at this word, I hesitated and actually had to ask myself, what do I feel joy about. I am in unchartered territory and have been for the last year or so, and it has not been all joy. But I’M STILL BLESSED, so how can I not find joy in that? What I can say gives me joy is Teaching. I love to empower others. I spent time with my great-nephews on Wednesday and I showed the oldest one how to cook pork loins, biscuits, and cheese rice. And that is what gives me joy, being able to impart what I’ve learned over the years and share it with others. I find joy in making others feel good about themselves because I know what it’s like to not have someone there to give you encouragement and the praise to push you to the next level.

Simply put, for me joy is simply helping and blessing others. It’s those “light bulb” moments, it’s seeing – being able to experience that moment of realization that “Yes, I can do this.”

joysource

HAPPY FRIDAY ALL!!!

Five Minute Friday: “Willing”

I’ve been reading WisdomfromaFather’s Friday posts for a while now and thought the idea of Five minute writings was neat. So here I am joining hundreds of others in Five Minute Fridays started by Lisa Jo-Baker. The key is to write for five minutes based on Lisa-Jo’s prompt “No extreme editing; no worrying about perfect grammar, font, or punctuation. Unscripted. Unedited. Real.”

So here we go: “Willing”

Ah, great prompt word. Put yourself – dare to think with me for a few minutes:

I want a new car, so therefore I must be willing to sacrifice some things to save money.

I want to succeed in school, therefore I must be willing to make time to study and read my lessons.

I want to be successful in my business, therefore I must be willing to do my research on the do’s and don’ts and what’s best for my niche.

I want to be a better listener, therefore, I must [be willing to] put others before myself.

I want to be a better friend, therefore, I must [be willing to] think less of self.

I want to be more compassionate, therefore I must be willing to be less critical.

I want to be a lot of things, but what am I willing to do, what am I willing to take on (responsibilities), and what am I willing to let go to become that which I wish to be?

I want to be a lot of things, but what am I willing to sacrifice?

I want a better marriage, so what am I willing to do to make it work?

I want to be a good wife, what am I willing to learn in preparation?

I want to be a better supervisor, but what am I willing to let go to better serve those who serve me?

The After Five: So basically this word prompts a lot of questions… we want things, but what are we willing to do to gain them? A lot of times we may ask ourselves these questions and we bounce ideas around, we think of pros and cons, we ponder on the what if’s, and analyze and analyze until we think we’ve come up with the best solution. Not to say that I don’t fall in this category, but can I share that the answers to all these question come with clarity if we would just WILL ourselves to be still before God and wait on his instructions. A lot of the answers to these questions come with clarity if we would just WILL ourselves to be patient. If we would WILL ourselves to just STOP, be still, and be patient, the answers to our questions, the paths we are to take, the manner in which we are to handle people and situations shall be revealed to us.

Willing

…and BLESSINGS!!! Have a Great Weekend!

Five Minute Friday: “Choose”

I’ve been reading WisdomfromaFather’s Friday posts for a while now and thought the idea of Five minute writings was neat. So here I am joining hundreds of others in Five Minute Fridays started by Lisa Jo-Baker. The key is to write for five minutes based on Lisa-Jo’s prompt “No extreme editing; no worrying about perfect grammar, font, or punctuation. Unscripted. Unedited. Real.”

[I’m afraid] All of my thoughts on this one word will not fit in a five minute time frame. But here goes… “Choose”

Choose- a gift, a privilege not to be taken lightly.

I choose to win as opposed to fail, but even if I fail at something, I choose to try again until I win or at least accept the fact that it may not be a strength of mine, but of someone else’s, therefore, I can choose to work with or collaborate with someone else so that we can reach a particular goal together because it’s not about me, but the greater good of others.

I choose to see the good in others because there are enough people who already see the bad in them. Yes, this includes the incarcerated (the thieves, the murderers, the rapists, the cons), yes even these.

I choose good over bad – I wish this was the case all the time…

~~~~~~~~

The After Five: …but it’s not. And that’s being honest. Sometimes I choose temporary pleasures over eternal rewards and ‘just’ deal with the consequences. 

And that’s the thing about making choices – dealing with the consequences. If you dish it, can you take it? It takes some longer than others but I “choose” to believe that at some point in all of our lives, we realize that some of our trials and tribulations were not a result of someone else’s choice, but of our own. And with that revelation or realization, we step into a new level of maturity that teaches us humility and selflessness, to put others before ourselves. Is it not true that some of our trials are due to bad choices because we were only looking out for self? Daily, I learn to choose not because of what I will gain, but because of what can be gained to bless someone else. If I choose a job, am I choosing it because of the pay and benefits, or am I thinking about how I can truly assist someone else in achieving a goal that will ultimately bless many others?

This word is actually hitting home this week because I had to ‘check’ myself on the choices I make regarding the jobs I take. I think it’s fair to say that selfishness often comes from desperation or as some people would call a “do-what-I-gotta-do” mindset. Having said and felt this many times myself, I’m not convinced that “doing-what-I-gotta-do” is always the best choice!

With the crowd or alone, however you stand, CHOOSE to stand on what you know and believe to be right in your spiritual eyes.

source With the crowd or alone, however you stand, CHOOSE to stand on what you know and believe to be right in your “spiritual” eyes.

Blessings to all who take time to read this. We live and learn to Be Better and therefore Do Better!

Lots of love ~ Koko