Olympic Spirit

“Strength and Courage aren’t always measured in medals and victories. They are measured in the struggles they overcome. The strongest people aren’t always the people who win, but the people who don’t give up when they lose.”  -Ashley Hodgeson

Every Olympic games I truly enjoy the P & G videos that have inspiring Olympic Stories, so I want to post some of them here. Hope you feel the Olympic Spirit of determination within these videos. Enjoy.

 

 

 

A few more stories to inspire…

Uber-kind stranger helps dad see his son’s debut at the Games

One of sweetest stories so far is that of Ellis Hill, the father of shot putter Darren Hill, was not even going to go to the Olympics. Travelling for mega sporting events is expensive and Hill, who drives an Uber taxi in Philadelphia, was going to have to settle for watching his son on TV. But that all changed when he mentioned to one of his passengers that he wouldn’t be able to go. The Good Samaritan decided to crowd-fund to get him there.

“It was devastating to hear that,” said the passenger, Liz Willock, in an interview with People magazine. “Here’s this wonderful man, who has a close relationship with his son, and I know any parent would want to see their son or daughter compete at the Olympics, but it was very understandable how that could be out of reach.” [taken from Daily Maverick]

 

Yusra Mardini might be the only athlete in the world whose sport literally saved her life.

The Syrian refugee, who will compete for the newly created Refugee Olympic Team, was forced to flee her home country because of civil war. With her sister, she went from Lebanon to Turkey with plans to sneak into Greece via the Aegean Sea, according to Juliet Spies-Gans of the Huffington Post.

During the trip, her boat broke down and began to fill with water. Along with another refugee, Mardini and her sister jumped into the Aegean Sea and pushed the boat to land. A month later, Mardini and her sister went to Berlin.

Mardini has always been a talented swimmer, but circumstances in Syria made training difficult at times.

In Berlin, she was able to begin training with Wasserfreunde Spandau 04, a swimming club that is based near her refugee center, according to the official Olympics website. There, she would train in a pool that was built for the 1936 Olympic Games.

Mardini hopes she will inspire others, according to the Olympics website:

I think my target is to qualify for the Olympics and to be an inspiration for everyone.

I want everyone to stay strong for their goals in life, because if you have your goals in front of your eyes, you will do everything you can; and I think even if I fail I will try again. Maybe I will be sad, but I will not show it, and I will try again and again until I get it. I want to show everybody that it’s hard to arrive at your dreams, but it’s not impossible. You can do it; everyone can do it. If I can do it, any athlete can do it.

She competes in the 200-meter individual medley, 200 freestyle and 400 freestyle events [taken from bleacher report.com]

 

Well, I hope these stories inspire your day and your life. Don’t give up!

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Oh how blessed we are

6b428dfcb7ec9a69577941481908fc2dWith the US Independence day this weekend it makes me reflect how blessed I feel to be free. I think many Americans have no idea how free we are.

This past week I was drawn to a small red box film called, Desert Dancer, that was the true story about an Iranian dancer named Afshin Ghaffarian. This movie gave me a whole new perspective on how naive I am to the freedom I enjoy each and every day.

Afshin grew up unable to dance & was actually punished as a young child for dancing in his childhood school. His story was one of needing self-expression, desire, passion, and seeking to live from his heart. This movie opened my eyes further to understand those countries that live in such suppression. It made me try to imagine how it would be to have to hide a passion; to have to break rules to live a dream; to seek a better understanding of a world so torn and broken and to finally have a taste of freedom.

As we celebrate our freedom, I challenge all of you to share a prayer of thanks for the wondrous freedoms we live each day. Peace. Love and Freedom to all.

To all of you who are feeling less than free. May you find it in your heart today.

Peace and Love to all.

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To humble & to Wow

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This GoPro video has a message you have to listen to and be in awe of. Life is a dream. Life can be full of surprises. Life is what you live. You are made of Stars, so the possibilities are limitless.

When you look at the BIG world around us, the unmeasurable spaces of the universe, you can’t help but feel small. Yet, we are made of the very magic of the divine places, the light that makes up everything. We live by the very pulse of it all. We are part of all that is. There is a sacred space in all things. I think this video shares a glimpse of that connection, the magic, the greater divinity in everything we do. Beautiful.

Then with this video, you see the details, the magnificence of the world, the colors, the variety, the space, the beauty. You can’t look at the swirl of the stars and not feel small or see the clouds race by and know something larger is at work. Everything is so beautifully timed. We are part of this place. We are part of the beauty. We are part of what we make it.

I don’t think you can look at the details of this world and not be humbled and know the deep love that is hidden in everything.

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Here is one last video of some amazing places around the world.

Faith not Fear

l778594751It is funny how life keeps sharing the same lessons and you still find yourself wondering what you are missing from the experience. I have been going over some of my  old blog posts and found a couple within the last three years that included some personal feelings. I was writing down the situations in which my husband was looking for work and how it was affecting me. I began to laugh to myself, noticing the very familiar feelings that I am having today. My husband has decided to leave his current job in pursuit of something better suited to his desires.

I am a big believer in doing something you enjoy, so I am very supportive of the move, but with any change comes a bit of discomfort, feelings of being lost and unsure where to go. I walk around my house wondering if I should be preparing to move, I look at my daughter and wonder if I should plan summer camps and fun activities or if it will all be in vein. It is “limbo” and I handle the feelings, but it is hard to not get sucked into the demanding mindset where you begin looking at the sky and saying, “What are we suppose to do!” I find myself constantly praying as I drive around looking for any “sign” or direction. I truly know God could deliver an answer at any time, so why not now!

I know, I know, “patience.”  But, as I strive for patience, I also feel torn between “need” and “want.” It is not bad to need or want an answer, so I can then begin to move in a direction. That has to be better then sitting by wondering which direction to go. Sitting at the cross of two paths is fine, but isn’t it better to know which one to take and then begin. NOt just sitting and wondering, right?

Many people have their own thoughts, “God sometimes wants you to decide,” or “things will work out.”  I know things will “work out” but its the in-between that is hard on me. The in-between is suppose to be that space where everything is clear. Like in meditation, there is always mention of “the space” “the gap between” so why is it so hard for me to be in-between. Why can’t I just go with the flow and wait for it to all work out?

So, today I am going to go on a personal pilgrimage of the online world to find some tips to help me get beyond the mundane of waiting, to move forward in some direction that will help my family. Wish me luck!!

TIPS TO MAKE BETTER DECISIONS: With anything you choose, you need to begin with making good choices, right? Right. My husband has made some great choices and it has led him to big learning and great opportunities, but in the last couple jobs there was more stress, which then affected his health and happiness.

The human mind hates uncertainty. Uncertainty implies volatility, randomness, and danger. When we notice information is missing, our brain raises a metaphorical red flag and says, “Pay attention. This could be important…” -Psychology Today

  1. Value is in the eye of the beholder: How much is a gallon of water worth?  This question makes me think of the show “Alone” & how after a week everyone is valuing water, cheeseburgers, beer, etc extremely higher than if they were at home. They are valuing these things much higher than what others may take for granted.      Always make decisions on your own: Sure, factor in other people’s opinions, but bear in mind that they may value things (very) differently. Blindly following other people’s advice may lead to disastrous decisions — even if they are based on “sound” advice from people with the best intentions of helping you.
  2. Know your goals before choosing: It may sound obvious at first, but it all boils down to your goals — knowing what you want out of the decision.But establishing a clear picture of your goals for decision making is not always trivial, and I don’t think people invest enough time to do it properly.     This rings very true for me. When my husband took his last position I was very worried about the role & how it truly sat with him and his values. I know now that you need to make sure your values are in line with what you choose to do. When you align your actions with your life purpose and personal values, then it is much easier to know the direction that is right for you. -Self Improvement Saga
  3. Try the PrOACT Approach to Decision Making https://litemind.com/decision-making/  [Problem Statement / Objectives / Alternatives / Consequences / Tradeoffs]  (1,2,3, from -litemind.com)
  4. WHY-Ask yourself “why” of what you have chosen to do and weed out poorly made plans.
  5. Set aside time to reflect on your decision. Sit with it.
  6. Ask yourself, “Will this decision be the right one for everyone involved? Is this choice  good for me? Is this choice good for my family?”
  7. Imagine having made the decision. Imagine choosing one path & then the other. How do you feel? Go within to see how it makes you feel.
  8. Let go of the fear. Know and understand there is no “right” decision.
  9. Follow your gut instincts. If you have to talk yourself into something, it is usually going to lead to a bad situation.
  10. Take action. Any good action or direction trumps inaction. How will you move forward if you just continue to sit at the fork in the road

 

waiting-for-a-signLOOKING FOR SIGNS OF DIRECTION

I laughed to myself as I came across this sign on the internet. I know it may sound funny, but I believe in signs. I have had experiences where passages in books, intention cards, magazine pages have not only been inspired, but answered my prayers. I know you may be skeptical, but here are a couple links to my stories–enjoy–https://yourhappyplaceblog.com/2013/01/02/tap-into-the-vision-for-your-life/

https://yourhappyplaceblog.com/2013/03/13/looking-for-the-gift-of-grace/

 

Funny article that said–Here is the sign you have been looking for. “Sometimes you have to stop worrying, wondering, and doubting. Have faith that things will work out, maybe not exactly how you planned–but perfectly.” -unknown

Great article http://www.possibilityoftoday.com/2012/03/29/here-is-the-sign-you-have-been-looking-for/

 

 

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Life Lessons

I have been driving my daughter and her two friends to school each morning and found it to be a great time to share some daily life lessons. These girls are thirteen, at a pivotal age where everything and everyone around them is defining who they are becoming, who they are listening to and who they will follow. I figured this was a perfect opportunity to share with them good things every morning to start their day.

I figured maybe some of you may enjoy a few daily life lessons you could share with those you love–enjoy! I am going to put a few at a time and then post them, so take what you like and share them while you are driving your kids to games or dance lessons or share them around the dinner table or bed time. Good things are always good for the whole family. The whole world! Enjoy and share the inspiration.

gratefulGET GRATEFUL: This morning I shared with them a video clip of a girl who got cancer when she was nine & had to have her leg amputated, but what they did with part of her leg was inspired. Check it out.  

I also shared with them the story line of the movie, “Miracles from Heaven” which shared the story of a ten year old who got really sick from her lower intestines becoming paralyzed and how hard it must have been for her to not be able to eat real food. She had to be tube fed (through a tube down her nose) or supplemental pills.

I then shared with them how my niece (age 12) had just been to the dentist and was told she had 4 teeth that were like that of an 80 year old person and she would need to anticipate them falling out.

The Life Lesson: get grateful that you have a healthy body that can eat, that can run, walk, dance, rock climb, jump, and is capable of anything. We often take that for granted and waste our time, sit on our butts and don’t get outside and walk or take a bike ride or try something new. We take for granted our healthy bodies. I challenged them to remember that next time they were complaining of going on a walk or not wanting to do something active. They need to get grateful and get going!

 

scientific-discoveries-that-happened-by-accident-1918108322-apr-12-2014-1-600x500EVERYONE HAS A CHOICE:  Life Lesson–You don’t have to do anything…you don’t have to be happy, you don’t have to be sad. It is a beautiful freedom to feel, be, do, say and become anything we want. We have a choice every day to decide the direction we want to go in–positive or negative. We decide how we react to any situation and we decide what we learn from every situation. We have a choice every single moment of our lives.

Velcro Story Swiss amateur mountaineer George de Mestral loved the outdoors and his daily walks with his dog. What he didn’t love was the burdock seeds that clung to his wool pants and his dog’s fur. He found the burs incredibly annoying until the day he wondered why they stuck.  By profession, George de Mestral was an engineer and inventor. He examined one of the burdock seeds under a microscope and was astonished by what he saw. The bur consisted of hundreds of tiny hooks that grabbed into the loops of thread in the material of his pants. This fool-proof, nature-made fastener became the inspiration for Mestral’s 1948 invention Velcro®.

Velcro® sales were somewhat slow the first couple of years, but Mestral never gave up and concentrated on tweaking his product to perfection. By 1955, over sixty million yards of Velcro® sold in that year alone making the inventor a very wealthy man.

So besides sharing with you this fascinating little piece of history, what’s the point? Attitude is the point, and the importance of having a good one. A person’s attitude toward their circumstances, toward their relationships, toward themselves, toward the planet, toward everything and everyone they come into contact with shapes their world and in turn, hands them their next set of circumstances and relationships. If a person’s attitude is negative, they will experience the circumstance or relationship as negative. In short, they will see nothing but “weeds.”

If a person’s attitude is positive and they are willing to look for the positive within every circumstance and relationship no matter what, then they will make Velcro® out of the weeds.

Adopt a Velcro® attitude about life and “stick” to it!  Copyright Mary M. Bauer.

 

A MATTER OF ATTITUDE: 

Edison-Fire_Shrunk_1Thomas Edison’s laboratory was virtually destroyed by a fire in December, 1914. Although the damage exceeded $2 million, the buildings were insured for only $238,000 because they were made of concrete and thought to be fireproof. Much of Edison’s life’s work went up in spectacular flames that December night. At the height of the fire, Edison’s 24-year-old son, Charles, frantically searched for his father among the smoke and debris. He finally found him, calmly watching the scene, his face glowing in the reflection, his white hair blowing in the wind.

“My heart ached for him,” said Charles. “He was 67–no longer a young man–and everything was going up in flames. When he saw me, he shouted, ‘Charles, where’s your mother? When I tolld him I didn’t know, he said ‘Find her. Bring her here. She will never see anything like this again as long as she lives.”

The next morning, Edison looked at the ruins and said, “There is great value in disaster. All our mistakes are burned up. Thank God we can start anew.”

*taken from Chicken Soup for the Soul 3

Happiness is an attitude. We either make ourselves miserable, or happy and strong. The amount of work is the same. -francesca reigler

Life Lesson: No matter how bad things may seem or how hard life may get, your attitude makes all the difference. Thomas did not focus on all he had lost, he found great value in beginning again. It was how he chose to look at the disaster.

Well, continue to look for my posts called, ‘life lessons’ and enjoy the tidbits, the stories, the life lessons that inspire us daily.

Enjoy your day!!  -H

A great, big question for you!

“A hundred years from now will the world be any different because I was important in the life of someone?”

I don’t know about you, but I always am hoping of touching someone’s life, whether it is through my writing, sharing a story, giving something of myself to a friend, sharing life lessons with my daughter. I am always seeking and hoping that little parts of me will make a difference some how. But, I do often have a greater yearning of doing more and often my heart becomes troubled wondering what I am missing to share. I often question if I will ever be selfless enough that I will not miss opportunities, that I will be in tune to my greater purpose, that I will not miss every moment that is suppose to bring something greater to this world. I am constantly inspired by great stories of others who sacrifice, who give unconditionally, so this week I am going to be sharing a few different stories that move my heart & prove they are making the world a little better through their giving hearts.

Here is a great example of someone making a difference to his family each and every day—My heart was truly stirred as I was watching a re-run of American Ninja Warrior a couple of nights ago. The Kansas City qualifier was on & there was a story that moved me. I have tried to find the actual video that was on ANW, but to no avail. The actual story was so good—a husband that was out of shape, turned Ninja through the necessity to move and carry his wife since she couldn’t walk because of a quick genetic disorder that is slowly taking her life. They drove over 24 hours to wait in the walk on line because she was not sure she would be around another year to watch him. Wow!! I didn’t even hear or understand that the couple was from my home state of Utah, so here is their story. http://www.ksl.com/?sid=34855384

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Here are a some little ideas that will make a big difference to someone else…SMILE.   Teach a skill you have to someone who would like to learn.   Give HUGS.   Give a sandwich to someone in need.   Send someone a nice note of thanks, encouragement or just a friendly hello.   PRAISE people.   Spread a little LOVE by putting together a Bag of JOY (fill it with things that will lift or inspire, a funny movie, comfort food, a great book, uplifting music, etc).   Just be there to listen.   Offer to babysit someone’s kids that just needs a break.   Share a sincere compliment.   Volunteer at your child’s school or for a community program.   Buy someone lunch.   Pay a toll.     Always say Thank you with a smile.   Write and article or post that will influence others in a positive way.   Take your family and pick up trash at a local pond or park.   Donate your old clothes and toys to a good charity.   Bake up something for your co-workers or neighbors.   Ask lots of questions in a conversation and then just listen.   Choose to strive daily for ways to inspire others.    Listen for inspiration and direction that will touch others lives.   Just LOVE.