blogging, Guest post, Wisdom, Wisdom Wednesdays

Wisdom Wednesday: Perspectives on Wisdom

PhotoFunia Badges Regular 2014-02-25 10 01 49

Today’s Wisdom Wednesday post is brought to you by Amelia from snapshotsofawanderingheart.  Amelia is a young blogger who describes herself as “caught in that tenuous age in my life right between the endless possibilities of youth and the realities of adulthood.”  What an exciting place to be!  I think it’s equally exciting to  share Amelia’s perspective on wisdom!

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Wisdom is:

To me, wisdom means choice. I’m not implying that if you make bad choices, you are unwise, or if you are unwise that you always make bad decisions.

Wisdom is knowing what life to choose. What mindset to apply to all of your life.

Wisdom is having the foresight to choose not prosperity, but contentment. It is the ability to find happiness in every situation, because life is a series of rises and plummets. It seems no matter how high you get, the next fall is of equal or greater horror.

Oddly, it is fun to be miserable. Happiness can only entertain people for so long, before we start looking for something to feel sorry for ourselves about.

Only with wisdom can we see that and overcome it. To choose to be happy despite the circumstances and despite the selfish pleasure to be found in it.

To find the kind of life you want and then daily dedicate yourself to it. Not to pick a job or a house or a car but more than that. To choose what kind of person you want to be and stand with it. That will kill self-consciousness.

To choose the person you want to be with and not falter. To never give up on that person. To never let foolishness inspire petty arguments. To decide to never stop putting the other person first. To not take the easy way out. But to choose to honor the forever pledge. That will inspire love.

To choose to be happy with your status and your job and your future. No matter what they are. Not to prevent growth but to conquer discontent.

In one of its many facets, wisdom is finding the courage to just live and be happy.

If you would like to participate in Wisdom Wednesdays, please email me at clares1964@yahoo.com. I’d love to read stories of how life’s situations have helped you gain personal wisdom.  I welcome writers of all ages and experiences. 

blogging, Guest post, learning, love, memories, problem solving, Wisdom, Wisdom Wednesdays

Wisdom Wednesday: Every Cloud has a Silver Lining

PhotoFunia Cookies Writing Regular 2014-02-25 10 00 53

I’m thrilled to announce that today’s Wisdom Wednesday is courtesy of the lovely Elaine from Foodbod.   Even though I’ve been living on Optifast for the past eight weeks, I can’t help but sneak over to Elaine’s place to take a gaze at the delicious vegetarian dishes that she creates.  Elaine’s blog exudes her excitement about life, as well as her healthy relationship with food.  While I LOVE her food posts, I think it’s extra special when she veers out of the kitchen and writes about her life.  Her Wisdom Wednesday post is a wonderful example.

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‘There’s plenty more fish in the sea’; ‘a stitch in time save nine’; ‘out of the frying pan into the fire’…there’s endless sayings that we hear every day, and often without knowing what they truly mean, or believing them even if we do!

‘Every cloud has a silver lining’…we hear this every time something goes wrong or upsets us, it gets pedaled out in amongst the pleasantries that people say in times of sadness or disappointment, as much because they dint know what else to say, whilst we try to understand what has happened and why, and at the time, we don’t always want hear it!!! There are probably many times that it’s been said when it has seemed like absolute rubbish, how can it possibly be the case that something good will come out of whatever bad has occurred?!

But I’m here to tell you, that good things can come out of bad; amazing, wonderful things can be the result of the most painful, heartbreaking occurrences. It can happen. It’s happened to me several times.

In the last few years, the most wonderful things have occurred in my life; each one as a direct result of the most awful things happening. In the last four and a half years I’ve lost my Dad, my Grandmother, been burgled twice, been very ill, watched my beautiful best friend, Caroline, die of a swift, vicious, rare form of cancer, and lost my lovely, most faithful friend, Nog, my dog.

Some of these things have obviouslphotoy been more heart wrenching than others, each one being upsetting in it’s own way; when we were burgled, I was so angry, I wanted to lock my world up completely and not let anyone near it; when Caroline died I was so heartbroken that I never felt that I would ever be happy again; I felt like no one in the world should ever smile again, ever; and that if I did smile, I really shouldn’t. When Nog died, I cried and cried for days wandering around my empty quiet house, hearing his footsteps everywhere.

And in the midst of these despairs, if anyone had told me ‘every cloud has a silver lining’ I would quite happily have punched them!! What a stupid thing to say! Or think! How could that possibly be the case?! Nothing was ever, ever going to be better!

But it was, every time. In the case of losing Nog, my Mum jumped on a plane from Abu Dhabi and came and spent a week with me, just being here.  A wonderful week of doing nothing but being together; such a gift. When we were burgled the second time, the bike that was stolen was replaced with one that I could actually ride and now I love cycling through the countryside every day. I literally smile as I cycle, even up the hills!

And when Caroline died, I made the decision to do what she now couldn’t: I made the decision to stay at home and be a Mum. Lots of things fell into perspective when she died and I made it my mission not to let her death pass without it creating change and meaning in my life; I closed my business and I dedicated my life to my husband and son and our home. And it was the best thing I have ever done. Our family has thrived on the change.

I’m not suggesting that if you are in the midst of a painful situation that it’s okay, I know it isn’t, and I know how much you are hurting. I know you feel like you will never want to smile again. All I can say is that I try to tell my son that whatever feels horrible right now, won’t feel that way forever and it might even have a silver lining.

Time will tell…

If you would like to participate in Wisdom Wednesdays, please email me at clares1964@yahoo.com. I’d love to read stories of how life’s situations have helped you gain personal wisdom.  I welcome writers of all ages and experiences. 

blogging, Guest post, memories, problem solving, The Happy Book, Valentine's Day, Wisdom, Wisdom Wednesdays

Wisdom Wednesday: The Happy Book

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I was so excited , that I actually squealed when my inbox revealed that Sophie, from British Chick Across the Pond had sent me her Wisdom Wednesday post.  This is the very first guest poster to appear on The Ravenously Disappearing Woman, and I couldn’t be happier.

Sophie writes about her life and adventures as a mom and military wife, living in the US away from her native England.  I first met Sophie through her The 9 Things that KILLED Valentine’s Day post.  I find her writing to be humorous, honest, and quite heartfelt.  Her Wisdom Wednesday post is no exception.

So, without further adieu, I give you the British Chick Across the Pond, Sophie’s story of The Happy Book…

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IMG_5097Lets just say an ‘eventful’ pregnancy- as far as my relationship was concerned- had caused me to develop a few abandonment issues. Forgiving and forgetting was NOT going well- even worse my past experiences were stopping me from moving forward with my life. Years down the line, my son was growing and changing, trying my patience through his ‘terrible twos’ stage while I was still blaming potential love-interests for the mistakes my ex had made. As a last-ditch attempt to stop accusing the world and his mother of plotting against me- I gave hypnotherapy a go.

The first session was awkward and I was nervous but determined to give it my all in order to finally release myself from the trust issues that had such a hold on me. He took me through some breathing exercises to encourage me to relax a little and asked me to think of a happy place…it could be a place I had been, an object, a time, an occasion… anything that made me remember feeling truly happy. Honestly, I was stumped.

Any happy time I could think of was tainted by what had happened before or after. The birth of my son for example- of course I was overcome with happiness when he was born…but recalling it made me feel very sad -and angry-that his dad hadn’t been there with me. I considered using a place I would visit growing up…oh but then I stopped going once my parents told me about their divorce. Even that statement necklace I had picked up for an absolute bargain didn’t work…especially as the last person to wear it was my friend and…well we weren’t friends anymore. It seemed that everything I tried was ruined by something. I explained my dilemma to the therapist and went away with the task of sourcing my happy place.

I began writing the odd word or phrase on each page of a small, new notebook; something each day that I was grateful for….that made me smile…that made me happy. I stuck in photos, cinema tickets…even friends -eager to help me on my mission- wrote messages in there for me. It felt good to have a fresh start, a clean slate, a place to store all the new – untainted – memories I was making. This book was creatively named “The Happy Book” IMG_5098

It worked too, by the time I had my next session I had a good few happy things stored up to use. I know many people are skeptical about hypnotherapy but the way I see it the idea is to alter your way of thinking – and all I know is it certainly altered mine. I came away feeling lighter, more positive and yes I’m sure the deep breathing and relaxation played a massive part in that – what mother DOESNT need some help relaxing? – but hypnosis or not I came away from those sessions a lot happier…and I believe my Happy Book had a lot to do with that too.

A few years on I find myself happily married (most of the time) (<– joking) and a lot less paranoid…you could even go as far as saying perhaps a little too trusting these days. I have continued to add to my ‘Happy Book’ – in fact I am onto book number 3 now, extending as far as a giant book – of thigh rubbing good times- which was given to me by my boss as a leaving gift, not to mention a few pretty boxes for those things I couldn’t fit in a book and couldn’t bear to part with. I can’t imagine life without it. It’s wonderful to have something to look back on, something safe, close just in case I need a pick-me-up– which I am pleased to say is not very often (touch wood)- and something that will stop the smallest negative from clouding everything else around me. The Happy Book has without a doubt become my happy place.

My experience taught me to let in the good when faced with the bad; that in the grand scheme of things these ‘huge problems’ that occasionally arise aren’t really that big…especially when faced with a whole book load of good things. It taught me to hold on to and cherish the happy moments and memories…and encouraged me to continue making more.

Doesn't this story just make you want to start your own happy book or box?
Doesn’t this story just make you want to start your own happy book or box?

If you would like to participate in Wisdom Wednesdays, please email me at clares1964@yahoo.com. I’d love to read stories of how life’s situations have helped you gain personal wisdom.  I welcome writers of all ages and experiences. 

blogging, Guest post, learning, memories, New York City, problem solving, setting goals, Thankfulness, thoughtfulness, Wisdom, Wisdom Wednesdays

I know it’s Tuesday, but I’m thinking Wednesday

What have life's reflections taught you? Picasso's "Girl Before Mirror" (Photo by me)
What have life’s reflections taught you?
Picasso’s “Girl Before Mirror” (Photo by me)

My morning’s shower seems to be my greatest time of reflecting.  I often think that world problems could be solved if all national leaders would put on their bathing suits and jumped into a gigantic shower room together to talk it out.  There’s something about soothing,  steamy, hot water pulsing on your head that stimulates good thoughts and great ideas.  It probably won’t surprise you to know that many of my posting ideas are born in my bathroom.  This morning was no exception. Somewhere between conditioning my hair and washing my toes, I had an idea for Wednesdays.

Since I began this blog almost a month ago,  I’ve been brainstorming ways that I can enhance my blog and keep with my overall theme of self-improvement.  Since I’m only two months away from hitting the half century mark, I was pondering on what I’ve learned from my nearly 50 years on this beautiful planet.  I spent my entire time of putting on make up and drying my hair reflecting on my life’s experiences and what I’ve learned from them; basically, the wisdom I’ve acquired in these past five decades.  That’s when an epiphany struck me like a burn from a raging hot flat-iron (actually, I really did burn my finger this morning with my raging hot flat-iron–ouch!).  If I’ve learned a few things in my short life, imagine how many wise things my blogging buddies have learned with their array of experiences! This revelation is causing me to create Wisdom Wednesdays and I’ll need your help!

I’m seeking volunteers of all ages and experiences,  who would be willing to write a guest post about a life experience that has made them gain wisdom.  The subject matter can be anything you wish, because I believe we can learn from the smallest of happenings or encounters.  If you would like to include a picture with your post, that would be wonderful.

Please indicate in the comments below if you would be willing to participate in Wisdom Wednesdays!  I’ll start it with my post tomorrow.  I look so, so forward to reading your posts, and I hope you’ll participate.  Posts and pictures may be sent to the email address on my contact page.  Thank you! 🙂