Rip off the mask, tear down the walls. Show the world my beautiful, vulnerable self!

Posts tagged ‘power’

Are You Letting Your Hot Buttons Mask What Matters?

Reacting With Your Hot Button

https://www.flickr.com/photos/photofarmer/6257525038/in/photolist-awXsbJ-duQquY-dDiY1D-y5suB-ps5ehG-abz714-o2taeS-ps2G5B-q2jANC-8f15SS-qFjEaK-2TNJE-4JDoLu-dSd8Jk-33E8ba-Ld6UzH-3r5Xf1-9Fy3LS-6V5Qwk-7mK27x-Dqqgc-8iVeJ-5qbL6X-4A42Dv-km1PMr-5c69aT-6wpwbs-6obFPX-4ohi6S-MhvW-3jdEjA-VBYVHD-cHm9EG-5eUJSD-8jzSfk-8Bs1dE-fAT6Ze-8CdsnD-b1Fxi4-8h1ahY-58C1fa-67UbYu-8Ebapf-fJbG1X-AeCBj-MZTR4-62zkMw-fF4Nre-4Dfjiv-4c3tayOnce again, the world, and especially the US is in a turmoil over a hot button. This time, the button is (for the bazillionth time) abortion. Equally predictable is the fact it masks a much more insidious agenda: women’s rights and the current administration’s continued attack on Roe vs. Wade. Make no mistake. The decision in Alabama and elsewhere is nothing less than an effort to take women’s rights back to a time when women were nothing more than chattel, and of less value than a man’s livestock.

Forget the fact that the Human Race would die out in short order without women to continue bearing children. Ignore the fact that all the culling efforts in China to select for male children has led to a serious shortage of those women to give said males a way to keep their name alive. The simple and sordid fact is, men know women have the ability and the brains to be their equal or maybe more, and they’re resorting to underhanded tactics to bring them back to their knees, barefoot and pregnant in the kitchen.

Women in Power Are Being Manipulated Too

Yet, as the decision in Alabama indicates, there are women in high places who https://www.flickr.com/photos/125303894@N06/14365669046/in/photolist-nTrNV5-2f5PCUZ-28knBCQ-bSRpwg-hSnPyx-otGuDp-azqvRQ-D2QXQh-YVh4U5-8ZJcE3-26bTzFo-eeaBEi-occovQ-9i7bQ5-23CJvTx-rhV1XQ-26LZPM6-nrsG7K-bmnvub-8rRn4C-MZDGbT-HuqYEh-27342hV-HrkwAE-ehfTPF-2734sEP-LgusiG-272GRGH-25DqddG-25Dqn1m-Y2VH7U-LXKfra-LguvaJ-25Dqnoq-25DJuL5-2f1ci9J-25DqbXL-28povan-Lm2wcx-HkMrNJ-2dYUsVs-oaeobo-ZR9qTn-rtFBMa-24ZPYXp-R78K1f-Dymseq-24W5BDs-23CJCE8-21DkYfLare buying into this load of hogwash because the men behind the plan know how to push the hot button called “abortion” and blow it so far out of proportion as to spread rampant lies about late-term abortions which, for the record aren’t abortions at all. They’re Births! Never mind the fact that in the words of Planned Parenthood:

Generally, in the US, abortion is an option from very early pregnancy (somewhere between 4-6 weeks, depending on where you go) until about 24 weeks. Abortions are available later than 24 weeks only in rare cases for medical reasons. (bold and italics added)

I know I’ll take some heat over this reference, but as Planned Parenthood’s primary concern is women’s health, I’m more inclined to believe them than some of the more questionable sources out there.

Fake News Again!

https://www.flickr.com/photos/armenws/5837909811/in/photolist-9TSPcr-C3VGX-24FwY6-26x1rb6-5itLut-dhFGeP-pFWFZK-abNp5y-adf5z-hL7FHE-dhFHhY-dhFvph-dauvud-dhFwgW-dhFqWQ-dhFtAn-abeFZP-dhFDeu-dhFuoZ-dhFqbq-adhZR-abKzAD-adf81-abKx9R-bpTzDn-QVxKyY-abKyYK-9gERc8-anUgst-abeFCX-bzS7hf-abeGb2-2cYSbck-8GpCMm-abNm6Y-21Uy4Gb-4NKgmb-abNkTs-begshM-hRcioi-daKq9G-aUymi2-ZRYKoW-9tsYBM-abeFsx-bNLL6K-F2o45H-6MFFvx-9SsLVR-ZAWXwiUnfortunately, all too many are taking sides on the fake-news-fueled issue, failing to do their own due diligence (no real surprise there) and thinking legislation regulating what women can do with their bodies is a good thing!

Seriously! Let’s listen to science. At least the results are provable and replicable, which is more than I can say for what’s coming out of the mouths of the fanatics lately.

Still and all, people are taking to the streets, social media, and anywhere else they think they have a platform, and shouting their opinions to the hills without digging deeper into the hows and whys of the latest hornswoggling.

Manipulation Runs Rampant

Let’s look at a few possible reasons behind pressing one of our most emotion-grabbing hot buttons:

  • Who is the real power behind the throne, so to speak. In other words, who’s behind everyone jumping into an old, tired, yet still emotionally charged fray?
  • Where are the horrific pictures and videos they’re posting coming from?
  • Why do people react to words and pictures with fabricated captions instead of going back to the source to find out what those words, pictures, and videos really represent?
  • What do all of the emotionally triggered issues have in common when you trace them back to their roots?
  • What are the people behind them truly hoping to achieve?
  • How are they using fear and horror to manipulate others to act and speak instead of think?

When I was younger, I heard a suggestion to count to 10 before voicing anger. The point was, when your ire (or for that matter, any other highly charged emotion) is triggered, it’s unwise to let loose with your first reaction. As I grew older, and life got faster as a result of technology, the sentiment changed a bit, but essentially remained the same. If you want to respond to an email or call which set you off, it’s best to sleep on it before dashing off an emotionally charged tirade.

Acting Without Thinking

In this world of instant gratification, and yes, a proliferation of lemming mentality, people act out their outrage as quickly as it occurs. They don’t take a step back or look closely at what set them off to determine its validity. Their emotions are triggered and they react accordingly.

So we hate entire cultural groups for no good reason. We boycott companies because we’ve been told they mistreated someone from a group we support. Our police officers’ lives are in more danger than ever, and in some cases, they overreact as a result. After all, they’re as human as we are, even if they’re highly trained. You bombard a human with enough stimulation, most will still crack, regardless of training and extraordinary levels of control.

Missing the Point

We jump up and down about the attacks on Roe vs. Wade, the rights of women https://www.flickr.com/photos/ionics/6338284584/in/photolist-aE6nbG-49a2Xa-TLgW2Q-5wAD6N-HGKPP-8UV6CB-6Sg7YA-9QycpZ-6u4T3X-4sC9aH-5nXKzn-5grmh3-ane6BH-W9uq65-62rxQ-Kud31E-XtaBzZ-LdJuy-LdJvu-ePGUFv-aE6qsQ-LdYkF-8Kvnyj-RdeDP4-6Btbw-ekUyG-eSNDQT-ESpkfb-5U4HwZ-66XHwe-a9LTFX-bWTW3k-4YhDF-2qGQSu-5LpPj-4jpvK-vjdRaC-8L6p5A-6HFRB-5r1qA-4jpvJ-4joXu-5QDfE-7qEysG-4jpS4-24RfjoL-bEFCy1-4joXx-43zSs-2e9RpMMto make decisions about their own bodies, and more, missing the entire point, exactly as the button pushers planned. While the shepherd sleeps, the thieves run away with the flock. Except, in this case, we are the sheep.

What rights are we giving away willingly because this game of sleight of hand has us looking in the wrong direction? What are we accepting willingly because we’re reacting with our emotions instead of thinking with our brains. We’re forgetting to ask for the whole story instead of what a bunch of scared old doddering idiots want us to know? How much of our proverbial farm are we going to give away before we wake up and start asking questions? If we ever do.

How long are we going to argue with people who don’t listen before we realize how much effort we’ve wasted, and how much ground we’ve already lost?

Taking a Pause for the Real Cause

If you ask me, it’s in our collective best interests to:

  • Count to 10, or even 100 before reacting/responding to inflammatory stories or comments.
  • Sleep on it before mounting a campaign for, against, or anything else.
  • Dig deep. See what’s behind the comments, decisions, legislation, or campaigns of anyone who raises hot issues once, or repeatedly. Lift the curtain and see what lurks behind it.

All too often, things aren’t what they seem, and few in power have anyone’s best interests at heart but their own. I hate to say it, but in many areas these days, the admonition “Trust No One” is apt and good advice to follow. There are many who, if they told me the sky was blue, I’d go outside and check. Even then, I’d probably do some research about the sky and how we perceive the color. I might even look into colors themselves and what truly constitutes “blue”.

Being a skeptic in today’s climate, even with our own reactions is probably safer, wiser, and in the long run, more efficient. It will save hours of time spent following a rut-ridden path to nowhere fast. I’m taking the position, when all else fails to say “Show me the money”. Not in the usual sense, of asking for payment, but instead, to illuminate the sources behind the stories they want us to buy into. I’ll then be able to do my own due diligence and determine whether I think that source and the information it flings can be trusted.

Questioning Everything Beats Questioning Nothing

https://www.flickr.com/photos/plaisanter/5360979843/in/photolist-8RoeNN-9aJqwX-AHesP-5UZrfW-68j7nm-dKRkGV-dJJaMa-As42TB-78XnSC-6pdkW7-8ZY9dX-8a6tP5-5Ta4hu-noSffW-npbZV7-912e5s-SVpSMZ-jpmvv7-A8zQK-ED531-aiZvpP-6Pe3sh-5Gyyhx-o1WgXU-dJPB8S-rgDZSQ-ehkNmj-ehf44H-9fEBcv-iqqZBP-2bHrrf4-np9yEc-8Jjkj6-RSPQ6r-ehfaxV-912ehG-ehkN5w-TiroUZ-ehf3hD-8ZY9fi-dKWRNj-ehf96H-HPwJ8-cfnus7-9XWTbs-jUjHgu-5UV3xk-5UV3n2-5n8qDB-sskeNRAll too often, when emotions are triggered, I’m already taking the position the source is suspect and fueling it’s own agenda at the expense of the greater good. Then again, I fear the greater good hasn’t been a consideration for a very long time, and it’s supporters are being forced to put their efforts into keeping their own heads above water. The masses are being left without support or representation. History has shown us that turning large groups of people loose to fend for themselves after having their basic needs (food, shelter) provided for lifetimes leads to its own set of problems, both personal and social.

Still, lack of a transitional period gives the powerful reason to point at the failures and convince themselves they’d been right to try to maintain the status quo, ignorant of less obvious basic needs like human dignity. What’s needed instead is simply transition and support rather than casting people out to sink or swim in their hideously under-prepared state. Worse still when support is withdrawn without warning or preparation.

Teaching the Masses to be Self-Supporting

It’s like kicking a baby out of the womb and telling her she must now fend for https://www.flickr.com/photos/linasmith/3920553695/in/photolist-6YrS2n-XDiyeq-5Fkjbt-6a4ZHZ-8KT3ar-7CYE7f-aTVe2g-bRcANF-QNJvjp-8FMx6s-XG4XSg-XQczyE-5S3xnJ-6Jg13D-v9jE8-XQcirE-XQcg1N-XDiBym-aKYTHB-qmw6v-wFFwj-qa7de-tUTQP-qa7gd-XQcv4h-XUg1Wc-rhdSu-tUTW6-aKZ8Zp-5P9Gv2-aKYSdZ-aKYYeK-9tiEZz-aKYVie-5dFPhe-s5SJG-tUTNk-6RmSyD-6iFpQL-fcWq3p-brMQDz-qa7eE-s5SPp-x3Zh3-854v2D-aKYW7T-aKZ1Lx-5dLbJ1-7CUQZV-aWWxggherself. There has been no warning or preparation; no skills learned or even a basic understanding of what needs to be done. Those who ensured the masses could survive and even thrive are now mired in garbage-filled bogs, fighting for their own lives, unable to offer even a minimal amount of guidance or support.

Still, the masses think with their hot buttons, react to wildly exaggerated claims, and fight amongst themselves, just as they’re supposed to. They’re rats in a maze, changing directions with every new electrical shock. Mindlessly racing around, getting nowhere, until they collapse from exhaustion, little realizing they’re locked in an endless, unsolvable maze, dancing to someone else’s tune.

Created with CanvaIf you ask me, the world needs a pause button to give people time to catch up, breathe, stop reacting, and learn some of those critical skills so they can advocate for themselves and their peers. More, they deserve an opportunity to see the truth, and to properly dispose of all the garbage being flung. There’s still beauty and purpose underneath all the crap, but the chest-pounding, reacting, and internal fighting has to stop before we’ll see the flower pushing it’s way through the sidewalk crack.

Are you ready to give that flower space to bloom? I’ll bring the broom if you’ll grab a rake and help me clear the way.

Let’s Do This Together!

Are you struggling to wade through all the garbage that keeps you from reaching your goals? Would you like to help clearing the way? Maybe it’s content creation, or perhaps it’s getting your books in order and creating a budget. If this sounds familiar and you’re ready to streamline your life and give your business space to grow and thrive, CONTACT ME and let’s talk!

Start Clearing the Way With Gratitude

My gratitudes today are:

  1. I’m grateful for my community. We have people who know how to navigate the sewer of falseness, and see where we’re being manipulated rather than led. We share research, and more, support each other.
  2. I’m grateful for setbacks which teach me I’m not alone in finding those who’d hold me back for their own gain.
  3. I’m grateful for strength to weather a setback, and with the help of my friends and community, get back up and forge forward again.
  4. I’m grateful for my butt-kickers who empathize, but don’t allow me to wallow.
  5. I’m grateful for abundance: love, friendship, support, community, lessons, challenges, opportunities, healthy, peace, harmony, philanthropy, and prosperity.

Love and Light

 

About the Author

Sheri Conaway is a writer, blogger, ghostwriter, and advocate for cats. Sheri believes in the Laws , of Attraction, but only if you are a participant rather than just an observer. Her mission is to Make Vulnerable Beautiful and help entrepreneurs touch the souls of their readers and clients so they can increase their impact and their income. If you’d like to have her write for you, please visit her Hire Me page for more information. You can also find her on Facebook Sheri Levenstein-Conaway Author or in her new group, Putting Your Whole Heart Forward

We All Matter

You Always Matter

I see a lot of posts lately about how we all matter, but I think the real question is, why would we ever think we don’t?

Somehow, we’ve come to believe life has to be a power struggle where there are winners and losers, those who matter and those who don’t. Is there a lack of mattering? Not enough to go around? Or do we just believe it’s so because someone else told us?

Everything is Energy So Tap Into Yours

I recently read a post about money, and how you have to recognize it’s nothing more than Created with Canvaenergy. Once you realize that’s all it is, you’ll understand it’s limitless and there will always be enough to go around if we know where and how to look for it, or, to be more accurate, attract it.

The same is true of finding where and how we matter. In the first place, it’s not about matter to someone or because of some special characteristic we possess. We matter simply because we are. In short, we don’t need a reason to matter any more than we need a reason to exist. The very fact that we came into this human form at this particular time is reason enough.

Sure, you can say that each of us matters to someone. But the first person we matter to isn’t someone else. It’s us! We matter, first and foremost to ourselves. Yet so many people feel they need to find something outside themselves to validate them, and until they do, don’t believe they matter to anyone.

Look For Validation Within Yourself

How often do you see women who, until they’re part of a couple seem to be drifting along in a bubble of meaninglessness? Or who, until someone notices a particular quality, feel like they’re invisible. (If you ask me, there are times when being invisible is actually a good thing. As an introvert I strive for invisibility quite often with minimal success.) They’d be surprised to know people notice them all the time, and more often than not, in a positive way. But until someone comes out and says something to them, they feel invisible and worse, unimportant.

We can certainly go around telling everyone they matter and they’re important. But too many have spent a lifetime waiting to be noticed and believing until they are, they have no value. In the meantime, those whose notice they seek recognition are likely laboring under the same misconceptions!

Looking for Self-love in All the Wrong Places

Maybe that’s why people fight so hard over the little things, and are so easily drawn into https://www.flickr.com/photos/armenws/5837909811/in/photolist-9TSPcr-C3VGX-24FwY6-26x1rb6-5itLut-dhFGeP-pFWFZK-abNp5y-adf5z-hL7FHE-dhFHhY-dhFvph-dauvud-dhFwgW-dhFqWQ-dhFtAn-abeFZP-dhFDeu-dhFuoZ-dhFqbq-adhZR-abKzAD-adf81-abKx9R-bpTzDn-QVxKyY-abKyYK-9gERc8-anUgst-abeFCX-bzS7hf-abeGb2-2cYSbck-8GpCMm-abNm6Y-21Uy4Gb-4NKgmb-abNkTs-begshM-hRcioi-daKq9G-aUymi2-ZRYKoW-9tsYBM-abeFsx-bNLL6K-F2o45H-6MFFvx-9SsLVR-ZAWXwipetty battles over things like race, religion, and politics. They join with others to fight for a cause they probably don’t even understand because it means they belong somewhere; but somewhere outside their perfectly wonderful selves.

Most are losing propositions meant to distract and divide so they’ll constantly be looking for another horse to jump on, another manufactured injustice to oppose. If you ask me, it’s a wonder we don’t see more people collapsing in the streets from exhaustion. I can’t imagine trying to keep up with all the rules and expectations required to continue belonging to something as structurally sound as a wind gust.

When we find our belonging within ourselves, we don’t have to worry about the ground being pulled from beneath us. We don’t need to keep up with the latest set of rules and expectations. The only thing we need to follow is our own heart and beliefs. Those will never change at someone else’s whim.

Why Fit In? We Were Born to Stand Out.

We learn from an early age we need to fit in. As children in school, we’re subjected to bullying and teasing if we are too different from the rest. As teenagers, we’re encouraged to do things even though we know they’re wrong to avoid being ostracized. Those who walk their own path are deemed “weird”, “oddballs”, or “outsiders”. Often, they’re mistreated quite cruelly for minding their own business and refusing to join the mainstream.

Sadly, most of us are guilty at one time or another of expecting others to be like us. Yet we resent being treated the same way, even if we’re too scared to admit it, much less, speak up. I’ve judged people unkindly and unfairly more often than I’d like, though in most cases I’ve come to regret it in some way. Once I remind myself they matter because they’re as unique and special as I am, I recognize I’m neither qualified nor justified in judging them in any way.

Withhold Judgement—Always

Each time we judge someone else and find fault, we’re reinforcing a false expectation which prevents them from feeling they matter. Some are able to rise above the opinions and expectations of others. Some of us learn to face our detractors and say: If you don’t like the way I look, don’t look!

But too many turn themselves inside out trying to get even a single positive word. I did it for too many years. Worse still, I watched my mother do it with her own family, never realizing the rules changed when she showed any possibility of getting close. She died believing she wasn’t good enough, and that’s a tragedy I don’t wish to see visited on a single other human being.

I Wish Everyone to Know They Matter

My wish is that every human being who walks this earth now or in the future knows their https://www.flickr.com/photos/ky_olsen/4860839266/in/photolist-n8CFnR-o5uD96-22RQjNp-eCZ3Kq-WYUGZj-DLmHDZ-KKjkM7-8px5ayperfectly imperfect self is important and needs no improvements or changes. They don’t need to follow someone else’s rules or twist themselves into uncomfortable shapes in order to belong.

It starts with me though. I have to catch myself when I start judging or comparing. I have to recognize the wonderful qualities each person brings to the table. I need to look past qualities that don’t fit my own myopic vision and see the amazing and inspiring person waiting to be noticed and accepted as they are.

I can’t control what other people see or do. Those who still believe they need outside validation can learn by the example the rest of us set to accept and validate themselves as they are. They don’t need to be restructured or remodeled unless they want to make changes to suit themselves. In other words, there is nothing wrong with them, and everything about them is right. But if all they feel is judgement, they’ll continue to reach for the impossible. I believe we’re all better than that, and it’s time we treated ourselves and all humanity with more kindness, compassion, and unconditional acceptance.

Setting a Standard for Gratitude

My gratitudes today are:

  1. I am grateful for the experiences I’ve had which taught me to see I matter.
  2. I am grateful for reminders I need to treat others like they, too matter without conditions or expectations.
  3. I am grateful for friends I’ve attracted now that I accept myself as I am, making only the improvements I believe I need to make.
  4. I am grateful for the opportunity to help others learn they are important because they are unique.
  5. I am grateful for abundance; love, compassion, friendship, uniqueness, belonging, sharing, peace, health, harmony, philanthropy, and prosperity.

Love and Light

 

About the Author

Sheri Conaway is a writer, blogger, ghostwriter, and advocate for cats. Sheri believes in the Laws , of Attraction, but only if you are a participant rather than just an observer. Her mission is to Make Vulnerable Beautiful and help entrepreneurs touch the souls of their readers and clients so they can increase their impact and their income. If you’d like to have her write for you, please visit her Hire Me page for more information. You can also find her on Facebook Sheri Levenstein-Conaway Author or in her new group, Putting Your Whole Heart Forward

Turning the Tide: Confirmation Needn’t Divide Us Further

Could Kavanaugh’s Confirmation Be the WASP’s Death Rattle?

In the aftermath of the Kavanaugh confirmation I was all set to write a research piece about the major contributors to the campaigns of his staunchest supporters. My plan was to encourage those displeased with the confirmation to boycott businesses owned by those supporters. But after stepping back from my emotional response it occurs to me I needn’t bother. What’s actually happening is the WASP male stranglehold we’ve seen for generations is seeing the writing on the walls. Like the dinosaurs before them, they’re facing extinction, and like any cornered animal they’re fighting hard and playing dirty.

Their most effective weapon so far has been to keep us fighting amongst ourselves. They make decisions which are clearly not in the best interests of the country, or engage in activities they know will incite emotional responses on both sides of the table. They rub their hands together in glee the more we raise our voices and stomp our feet impotently over their carefully constructed hot buttons.

In the end, though, those who don’t wake up and see past the haze of cigar smoke will simply fall into the tar pits of oblivion along with the men and their consorts who are so desperately afraid of losing the lofty places of power which are crumbling beneath their feet. As they built them atop the bodies and souls of people they steamrolled over or baffled with their bullshit, they have no infrastructure with which to maintain the integrity of those ivory towers. Soon they, themselves will be the ground upon which we, the people rebuild on a firmer, more resilient foundation.

Using Unexpected Tactics

So my original concept; to point fingers at the major political contributors and influencers, encouraging people to do business elsewhere, while questionably admirable at its roots, would have been a fruitless effort to use their own tactics against them. At best, it might only have delayed the inevitable. At worst, it would have resulted in further retribution collected from those who deserve it least and who’d bear the brunt of the ensuing hardship. Even if we could make a difference to the financial status of the giants, they’d simply retaliate by cutting jobs and raising prices. Once again, the little guys would bear the brunt, not those who’s money trees we’d seek to shake.

Like the brontosaurus and Tyrannosaurus Rex, the good ol’ boy, WASP coalition isn’t long for this world. They fight an uphill battle in a world where they are becoming a smaller and smaller minority. Their smoke screens, fake news, and highlighting of emotionally charged issues are coming under scrutiny. Not by everyone, by any means. At least not yet.

There are still many who are quite content to believe whatever they’re fed by their “trusted” sources. Like the Pied Piper’s rats, they’ll follow their dying leaders right into the abyss without question or hesitation. But enough are questioning, discussing, and dropping the emotional knee-jerking to heal wounds and bridge gaps.

We Must Come Together to Thwart The Misuse of Power

Photo: David Derong/Iowa State DailyThey’re counting on us to stay divided. We need to show them, instead, a growing community which is united and determined to avoid the pitfalls we’ve been succumbing to until now. We are learning to step back from arguments over emotionally charged issues; to open our hearts and minds to people with dissenting opinions and beliefs. In so doing, we’re finding more common ground than points of disagreement. By learning to listen instead of shout, we run the risk of learning something new which might even make us stronger.

When all is said and done, people not only want to be treated fairly themselves, but to see others treated that way as well. Certainly, definitions of “fairly” vary, but at some point, we can and will come upon common ground.

Judging someone by their faith, skin color, gender, or sexual preference, or worse, assigning unfavorable standards to those who might be different in some way is ludicrous and short-sighted. Every single one of us is different in our own way, though I prefer to use the word “unique”. Even those who profess to be the superior race, gender, whatever, are unique each in their own way. The same-ness they use to connect with their elitist, entitled group of swine is weak and growing weaker with each new excuse they cobble up for excluding or ostracizing yet another group. It’s all arbitrary, and they’re slowly rendering themselves redundant. If you ask me, that redundancy can’t happen quickly enough.

Our Most Powerful Weapon is Compassion

Our best response to all the diversionary tactics, the disrespect, the cornered animal behavior is to arm https://www.flickr.com/photos/142726605@N03/26477590124/in/photolist-GkJz5y-Lbjtyy-7U6aRM-fAvVrd-8xkhNA-9y8U87-9y8PZ9-hkmFEV-pFNVmn-qfvzds-4wXFCU-qwU8vr-fvtgHY-rrTvBA-qx26Jh-deDyEe-zLy9J-iyNxU-9y5Sva-zLy9G-nGtJKV-2ahmb-8GaT1p-8xhj1c-qfZurB-8xo6AA-o2vgjD-fhmvPA-i9LLEe-fhfA2Y-eyHAQ7-4wTwBV-fvthgq-4wQn2x-fvdZMM-fvuWFY-6Q1PWA-fP1Z3u-EjZqZV-daB9Am-aAFS2R-9y8RDE-fAvVAo-iSPYmR-6EKY95-4o5gjJ-6PDXe3-Kcbqcp-9aQUMa-75sAZqourselves with two things; logic based on fact, and compassion. Those who seem to view sexual predators, abusive behavior and outright bigotry as positive qualities don’t know how to deal with something so simple. Compassion alone is completely beyond their ability to comprehend. If it ever found it’s way into their tool box, they probably tossed it away as a weakness not to be tolerated. In his article “Power Causes Brain Damage” published in the July/August 2017 issue of The Atlantic,  Jerry Useem puts forth a viable explanation for the failure of those in power to recognize or utilize compassion.

In between all the rhetoric and emotional insanity, there are new stories every day highlighting acts of compassion which epitomize the strength of working together for the common good; of setting personal needs aside to help someone else. Better still, they are stories of love across all real and imagined borders where we’re continually encouraged to hate with no valid reason to do so.

Becoming Part of the Solution

https://www.flickr.com/photos/gcaspers/3674508861/in/photolist-6AGPt4-9XPdGp-9AfZYv-asnfWg-2j1go4-7UukPU-a2XVdU-NqoUQ-dbkFUe-a2XRDb-6nnHrK-9EBf9b-9xemFj-cucYQS-cud1JC-cucV5Q-cucW5f-9GVbUK-9XS6cJ-53kCM9-8dXRc-ctMcPj-crXsXw-cutJfu-a3bJ56-9XS6GA-aspUtj-a3bRmp-rjDGsd-cudgUJ-9xeGYS-ctNGF1-cutroo-crYSB9-a2UPPe-crYbPw-6ZUrTn-cutJYm-jCRHS-cutQqA-csxxsh-sabp4u-aspXws-a3fFX5-cutPDh-dmd5Ze-asnkuX-cykHmj-9xAUFm-cutrGUAs I see it, it comes down to a choice. We can continue to be part of the problem until we, too tumble into the abyss. Or we can take control of our emotions, throttling them back before reacting, and use the cognitive part of our brains to recognize we’re being manipulated, and take ourselves out of the reactionary mix.

I still cannot comprehend the reasons some of my friends are choosing one side or another. I respect them enough to recognize they have their reasons, and don’t allow those reasons, whatever they might be, to affect our friendship. We all walk the path we’re supposed to, even if that path is inexplicable to others. We don’t owe anyone justification for what we think or do. We only have to reconcile it within ourselves. The one thing I do find unacceptable is if someone expects justification from others, but insists their own ways are right and require no explanation or reason. Ya can’t have it both ways. Double standards are at the root of our current problems, and people are speaking out against the practice both overtly and subtly. They must be eliminated before we begin building our new foundation.

I’ll leave you with a final thought. When you take the time to listen to someone who doesn’t share your values or beliefs, you might actually learn something or see a viewpoint you hadn’t considered, but might prove valuable in the overall scheme of things.

Gratitude Blurs the Lines Between Us

My gratitudes today are:

  1. I am grateful for the opportunity to share different viewpoints.
  2. I am grateful for friends who don’t share my opinions and beliefs.
  3. I am grateful for the dying dinosaurs. They once served a purposes, but show us how that purpose has changed or become obsolete.
  4. I am grateful I’m able, after a time, to step away from emotional responses and look at things logically seeing cause and effect.
  5. I am grateful for abundance; diversity, friendship, love, joy, compassion, kindness, connection, peace, harmony, health, philanthropy, and prosperity.

Love and Light

About the Author

Sheri Conaway is a writer, blogger, ghostwriter, and advocate for cats. Sheri believes in the Laws , of Attraction, but only if you are a participant rather than just an observer. Her mission is to Make Vulnerable Beautiful and help entrepreneurs touch the souls of their readers and clients so they can increase their impact and their income. If you’d like to have her write for you, please visit her Hire Me page for more information. You can also find her on Facebook Sheri Levenstein-Conaway Author or in her new group, Putting Your Whole Heart Forward.

One Man’s Tool is Another’s Weapon

Tools: Using Them for the Good of All…or None?

Tools. What do you think of when you hear the word? A rake? A hammer? A shovel? Or perhaps something mechanical like a lawnmower or a washing machine?

The word can be applied to pretty much anything that helps us do things more simply, more quickly, more efficiently. How about computer software? Antibiotics. A pencil. A laser.

Any or all of these in the right hands can make our lives better, both on an individual level and a global one.

But in the wrong hands, tools can be altered or abused and used to do harm.

I know what you’re saying right now. How can a simple pencil cause harm? Have you never heard the old saying “the pen is mightier than the sword”? How many lives can be unalterably changed by words written and published which mis-state facts so convincingly as to turn nation against nation; brother against brother? Or on a smaller scale, who hasn’t at one time or another been hurt by someone’s thoughtless and uncaring words penned in anger or unwarranted hatred?

There have been times when garden implements were taken up as weapons when nothing else was available. Drugs can be altered, software can be hacked. And lasers can be used to kill as easily as they can be used to heal or create beauty.

Money: The Ultimate Tool or the Ultimate Weapon?

Do you know what else is nothing more than a tool? Money! That’s right, the almighty buck! Before there was money, people traded things for things. All money really did was simplify the process.

OK, not “all”. It also creates a gap between the “haves” and “have nots”. It makes people do awful things to get more of it. Some are even convinced that a certain amount of dollars (or euros, yen, Bitcoin, or whatever your currency) will make them happy. It also serves to emphasize our lack mentality.

And yet, it’s no more or less ridiculous than saying having enough hammers, or bicycles, or toothbrushes will make them happy! The only way any kind of tool will bring you happiness is by using it to accomplish something.

Accepting the Myth of Scarcity

Take a moment to think about that statement. As long as we believe there’s not enough of something to go around, we give it additional value as a scarce commodity, and it takes on a life of its own. With regard to money, we allow those pieces of paper and bits of metal to mean more to us than love, compassion, community. What began as a tool is now the master.

When we value a thing above our humanity, we give those who have more of that thing undeserved power. While some will continue to use their abundance to do good, there will always be a few whose intentions are, well, not so good.

Throughout history, we’ve had people who came into power, in part because they had more of something, typically money, than others. In too many cases, they were poisoned by that power. Their minds craved more, and when they got it, it was never enough. For some inexplicable reason, they felt they had to control everything and everyone around them. Inevitably, they and the world they’d built came crashing down around their feet.

Too Much of Anything Can be Deadly

Contrary to popular belief, it is possible to be too rich or too thin. Just as King Midas ultimately destroyed what he loved the most, those in our world whose main goal is acquiring more ultimately corrupt themselves and lose their most important possession—themselves. Unfortunately, in the process of acquiring stuff and killing off their own humanity, they take countless others with them.

Some of them are partners-in-crime, sacrificing their own humanity for what they don’t even realize is a fleeting moment of power. But most are victims; perhaps followers at first until they are sucked into the machinations of the aspiring gods, only to be chewed up and spat out when they are no longer useful. Too often, they drag their bruised and broken bodies back to where they came from, and look for someone else to blame for their ignorance and stupidity.

We see it time and time again, yet as a whole, humanity fails to learn from its most monumental mistakes. Whether it’s money, technology, land, or some other commodity, he who holds the most, also has the most to lose, and eventually does if they use what they have solely for personal power. But they never fall alone. They always take the masses with them, who may have had little to lose, but also nothing to gain. When the walls come crashing down, it is they who are left naked and exposed, easy prey for the next idiot with aspirations of grandeur.

Humans Got Us Into This, Our Divinity Can Get us Out

I’m enough of a dreamer that I still see a time when the veil of ignorance is lifted. A time when those who would misuse the tools mankind has created for their own personal gain are no longer able to gather followers as mindless as a flock of sheep who accept their lies and subterfuge as gospel. I believe there are enough people who use those tools for the good of all to arise and quell the ugliness of these inhuman humans.

But first, we have to find a way to overcome generations of ignorance and blind obedience which has sucked far too many people into the dark depths where thinking is discouraged and allowing emotions alone to separate truth from lies is the norm.

I truly wish I had a solution, as it seems pointless to continue staring at a blank wall without having some idea of how to get around it. The only thing I know for certain is that beating people over the heads with opposing viewpoints serves to make them grasp their misbegotten beliefs closer to their breasts.

Time to Stop Beating a Deaf Horse

Fighting something automatically generates resistance because change is, to many, terrifying. Pushing to convince someone that the sky is blue when they’ve been taught since birth it’s orange will have but one outcome: they will stop listening to anything you say on any subject.

Sure, I know what does NOT work to stop some from misusing the miraculous tools we’ve created, and others from following them blindly. I just haven’t found out what DOES work yet. With many minds working to find it, I can only have faith that the solution will ultimately be found, and the tools we’ve created will be returned to their rightful place, their rightful purpose. Only then will we stop being controlled by the tools and those who would misuse them for the sake of their own power.

Finding Gratitude in Everything We See, Say, and Do

My gratitudes today are:

  1. I am grateful I was taught to think with my brain while engaging my heart to keep me human.
  2. I am grateful for opposing viewpoints as they make me look more deeply at both sides of the equation.
  3. I am grateful for my faith in the humanity and divinity within us all. For some, it might be more deeply buried, but it’s there, if we can only free it from artificial, self-imposed bonds.
  4. I am grateful for the ability to write. It makes me think, and hopefully, allows others to do the same.
  5. I am grateful for abundance: love, friendship, knowledge, wisdom, guidance, opportunities, challenges, lessons, setbacks, successes, dreams, goals, problems and solutions, peace, harmony, health, philanthropy, and prosperity.

Love and Light

Sheri Conaway is a writer, blogger, Virtual Assistant and advocate for cats. Sheri believes in the Laws of Attraction, but only if you are a participant rather than just an observer. She is available for article writing and ghost writing to help your website and the business it supports grow and thrive. Her specialties are finding and expressing your authentic self. If you’d like to have her write for you, please visit her Hire Me page for more information. You can also find her on Facebook Sheri Levenstein-Conaway Author

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