Well, wonder no more – I can tell you what we all ultimately want to do:-
We all want to make a profound difference in the lives of others.
Deep down you already know this – but you may have not been willing to acknowledge it. Or maybe in your world, it’s not considered cool to openly declare your desire to help others.
As I look around the world today, I am so encouraged to see so many more people stepping up and wanting to create their legacy and to live a life of contribution.
You may argue that maybe that’s just the circle of people I move in. Well, that could be true but then again I seem to attract people who want to make a big difference in the world!
Right now, the world is shocked and moved by the plight of the millions of people affected in the Philippines after the most powerful typhoon recorded in human history. And this could just be the beginning of many more such massive natural catastrophes to come in the years to come.
What has been so heartening and moving is how so many people around the world have stepped up in their efforts to help the millions of people affected in the Philippines.
What is it about the human heart that so moves us in making such superhuman efforts?
Maybe it’s because the path to Nirvana lies in kindness to others
My Update from the Last Few Months
As some of you will have noticed, I have not been blogging much over the last few months. It seems a long time ago since I wrote 100 blog posts in a month and wrote 28 relationship articles in the month of February 2011!
I have been on quite a journey over the last few months – and like for so many of us, it has been a time of deep soul searching and retrenchment.
This year began for me with a wonderful Yoga experience with Sadhguru in February which really reconnected me to my true core and made me realise what’s important to me.
“A World full of love, light and laughter. It’s time has come. Let’s make it happen!”- Sadhguru
As I look back on my life over the last few years, it seems that I had moved away from my core purpose of living a life of contribution and making a difference. Then a recent personal development seminar with Landmark awoke me once again to what’s important to me and made me present to my own greatness – and also your greatness.
I am pleased to get back into integrity and once again write about matters about life from my heart.
So here I am reinvigorated and blogging once again, out to transform the world one reader at a time! It feels great to be back – and on this 50th anniversary of the death of President John F Kennedy, what better topic to write about than love and kindness?
My blog post for today is about love – and how to bring more love into the world before it’s too late.
8 Ways to Bring More Love into the World
Have you heard the story of the ugly duckling?
Well, there never was an ugly duckling – he was actually a swan whose real beauty had not been recognised by himself and nor by others.
All of us may or may not be ugly ducklings, but we are totally worthy of being loved, accepted and cherished just as we are.
Check out why no one is ever an ugly duckling
Ultimately we are all trying to do the best we can with our current knowledge of knowledge, awareness and understanding. But we lose our way and the first thing that goes is our ability to love ourselves and others.
To begin this article about love, I was going to write a few words here about how fragile our lives are and how tenuous is the fine line between life and death. But as so often happens, life illustrated my point more poignantly than I ever could myself.
I started writing this article on a train going to London and we were told by the driver over the tannoy that our train was subject to long delays. My initial reaction was something along the lines of oh no, here we go again!
Then at the next station, I got talking to an employee of the train company and he told me what a traumatic morning it had been for them. There had been a fatality with someone hit by a train at that very station. All the staff were traumatised and he was being sent home to rest.
Immediately, my heart sank for the family of the killed person – so what if I was late getting home? There was one person who was never going to get home – never mind getting home late. And the lives of his/her loved ones will never be the same again.
This was yet again another stark reminder of why we need to make the most of each day as we just don’t know what tomorrow will bring.
Yet, we all go through life as if there is always going to be a tomorrow for us. We squander our precious time and energy on things that really don’t matter at the end of the day.
We put our lives on hold and we spend so much of each day on those things that we cannot control or impact. For example, here in the UK most of us moan and groan about our unreliable weather – and yet there is not much we can do anything about it!
We try and control our relationships and how people behave around us – and yet we rarely look at how we are impacting them and what needs to change in us.
We want things done our way – and our way only. My way or no way!
Okay, maybe I am exaggerating a bit here but you get my point.
So what does really matter in our lives?
“You’re imperfect, and you’re wired for struggle, but you are worthy of love and belonging.” – Brené Brown
Yes, maybe we are all imperfect and maybe we are wired for struggle. And yes, maybe life sucks for so many of us for much of the time. But what really matters in life?
By the way “Life Sucks” is an American phrase I picked up from my US friends. Every time they say this to me, I give them a lecture about how you get back what you put out, and how they should reframe their outlook. But I am learning now to leave them be –and I am trying to love them:-)
What really matters in life is love.
Love is the most amazing thing in our lives. It is what makes us human, what makes life worth living. Nothing else truly matters. The size of our homes, bank balances, the beauty of our spouse, the speed of our car – all these things pale into insignificance when we face the splendour of what it is that makes us tick.
Love does not make the world go around – it simply makes the ride worthwhile!
Love is not the highly commercialised circus we see on Valentine’s Day. It is much deeper and much more profound than sending someone a dozen roses at hugely inflated prices. It is much more than candle lit dinners and fancy chocolates.
We all yearn for that deep connection with others, those moments of bliss, joy, completeness. We crave to have more of those delicious moments we may have had with a romantic partner. Such moments seem so rare and forlorn.
We all remember the blissful moments when strangers have shared their love and made a difference.
We cry when we see happy stories on our TV screens of families reuniting.
We remember the sheer joy of children playing and the love in their eyes. Our hearts skip a beat, we get goose pimples and we get teary eyed when we witness an act of sheer love, pure, unadulterated and unconditional. Such moments literally take our breath away.
I invite you to look back on your own life and remember those moments when you have been blown away by an act of love. Recall how amazing you felt and how everything in the world seemed just right.
I can look back in my life and I can still remember the wonder I felt when I saw a friend’s baby son 20 minutes after he was born. And not having any children myself, I’ll be eternally grateful for that gift.
Another time, I felt so much unconditional love and joy when visiting some orphans – indeed this first time that I experienced unconditional love changed my life forever.
At the same time, when I look back on my life, there have been so many unloving things I have done that I now regret. Such as getting angry and impatient with my young nephew and mildly smacking him. Or getting really impatient with my siblings and almost hitting my younger sister. Even getting angry with my late father for his quirky habits.
These were little things which they probably don’t even remember but which still haunt me to this day. Things I regret and wish I could undo and erase from my psyche.
(By the way, now that my father is no longer around, those “quirky habits” are now fond memories of his endearing habits)
If love is all that matters, where did the love go in those dire moments which I still regret?
The love was brushed aside by a suddenly descended fog of anger, self-centredness and greed – and any number of other negative emotions. Or so called negative emotions.
Looking back to how I was then as a person and how I am now, the key difference is I am now much more self-aware of my thoughts, words and actions.
And with greater self-awareness has come calmness and greater compassion for those around me and for the world.
This perhaps is the key to bringing more love into the world and especially in our relationships. And I would like to think that all my relationships are now love based and much more authentic and genuine that before.
If I can do it so can you!
You too can have authentic relationships which are heart-centred and full of love – and here my 8 simple tips to help you bring more love into the world:-
1. Next time you are in a potential conflict or disagreement with someone, ask yourself – does this really matter? Will I even be talking about this in the months and years to come!?
2. Take a time out – get away from the situation and let your emotions calm down. Otherwise as in my examples above, you might end up doing something you’ll regret for the rest of your life.
3. Put yourself in the other person’s place and ask how you would want to be treated if you were them. Then treat them exactly the same way if not even better.
4. See each person in your life as a young vulnerable and helpless baby – which they all were at one time – and then see if you can show them the same love and awe you would show towards a baby.
5. Look for the highest good in the other person. Everyone is doing the best they can – so help them be the best they can be!
Indeed in any transaction and dealings with other people, look for the highest good of all involved.
6. Learn from any experiences where a relationship has deteriorated and see how you can do things differently next time. What one key lesson have you learnt that you can apply next time?
7. Look for guidance from your mentors and people you look up to help you resolve any relationship issues. What would your role models say? What would Gandhi, Mother Teresa, Dr Martin Luther King Jr say?
8. Finally, perhaps the most important thing is to have a life mission to bring more love into the world. Ask yourself these 2 key questions anytime you are in a conflict:-
What would love do?
How can I bring more love into the world?
The Way Forward
There never was an ugly duckling – just a beautiful swan that didn’t recognise his own beauty. The ugly duckling was teased and harassed by the ducks and other birds. Yet he retained his dignity and one day woke up to his own beauty.
In the same way, we are all beautiful swans – we just have to wake up. And we wake up by awakening to all the love in us and around us, and then doing our utmost to bring more love into all our relationships.
May you continue to bring more love into the world – please do so before it’s too late!
Do you have a DREAM?
In the last few weeks, we have had some momentous events and historic anniversaries.
First it was the 50th anniversary of the famous speech from Dr Martin Luther King Jr when he spoke of his Dream.
On 28th August 1963, Dr Martin Luther King Jr made the speech at the end of a freedom march in Washington DC that was the turning point in the civil rights movements, and his words have been immortalised. So what was it all about?
If you haven’t yet heard this speech online, where have you been!?
Now thanks to YouTube. you can finally hear it please check it out here as soon as possible. The video clip is just over 17 minutes long, so click here, sit back and enjoy being inspired by one of the greatest men of the 20th century.
As you watch this clip, I invite you to think about these 3 questions:-
- What is YOUR dream?
- What can you do with your life to change the world forever?
- When will you begin?
“Take the first step in faith. You don’t have to see the whole staircase. Just take the first step” – Dr Martin Luther King Jr
Happy Diwali and Indian New Year!
It was the Indian festival of Diwali and the Indian New Year last week and as usual it was fabulous time to get together with family and friends.
However as so often happens, the celebrations seem to be over far too soon – but here’s how you can spread the joy of Diwali and indeed any other festival all year round:-)
Graced with Orange
Author Jamie C. Amelio found the true meaning of her life after she launched a charity “Caring For Cambodia”.
And it all began with a dollar.
When Srelin, an eight-year-old Cambodian girl approached Jamie C. Amelio and asked for a dollar so she could afford to go to school, Amelio was skeptical. Was this just another beggar’s ruse?
Amelio was visiting Cambodia for the first time, and was shocked by the poverty. Entire villages lacked plumbing or electricity. And this child wanted a dollar for school?
A doubtful Amelio told Srelin that if she would take her to visit the school, she would give her the dollar. What Amelio found at that school changed her life.
Graced with Orange (Amazon.Com / Amazon.Co.Uk) is the story of how Amelio discovered 75 hungry, impoverished Cambodian children crowded into a single room with bars on the windows, waiting patiently for a teacher who never showed up. The students shared a pencil they had broken into small pieces, and had few school supplies. And this was a school that students had to pay to attend!
Overwhelming? Yes. But Amelio took it as a challenge. She established “Caring for Cambodia,” an organization which builds life-changing schools and offers opportunities to young people to learn in a safe, nurturing environment with motivated teachers. She invested herself into making lasting change in a country that cried out for it. She vowed to make a difference.
Readers will be inspired by the children of Cambodia. They will start out learning the background of how to build a charity and school system from the ground up and end up understanding how ‘giving’ and ‘getting’ can become the same thing.Tiny Buddha