Reflecting on the Benefits of Travel

Looking back on my past trips, I realize that with traveling comes change, learning, and growth.

Reflecting on this, I asked myself, ” What have I learned from my trips”?

From my time in Japan-

Most noteworthy, I experienced hospitality in it’s purest form. Magnanimous expressions of kindness. Nearly everyone that I met demonstrated it in their own way and to a different degree. It was as if each person that I had the privilege of meeting painted a brushstroke and collectively presented a portrait of hospitality. To me…Indelible ink on an impressionable mind.

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I learned the value of making time for those important to you. Put yourself out there. Make yourself available and don’t take for granted the opportunities that you have to spend time together, to make memories together.

Hospitality = Kindness to Strangers

With travel, there is the opportunity to learn something new about yourself and leave something old behind… The ability to grow… The option to bring home a broadened  perspective.

Mark Twain observed-

“Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts. Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one’s lifetime.”

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Positive Attitude

Play on the string we have

 

Attitude

by

Charles Swindoll

The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on my life. Attitude to me , is more important than the facts. It is more important to me than the past, than education, than money, than failures, than circumstances, than successes, than what other people think or say or do. It is more important than appearance, giftedness or skill. It will make or break a company…a church…a home. The remarkable thing is we have a choice everyday regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day. We cannot change our past…we cannot change the fact that people will act in a certain way. We cannot change the inevitable. The only thing we can do is play on the string we have, and that is our attitude…I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it. And so it is with you…we are in charge of our attitude.

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Dealing With Disability

Dealing with disability- what does that mean to you?

If you find yourself in a rut, a negative spiral, thinking -“I CAN’T do this, I CAN’T do that”…

STOP!

Better, ask yourself, “What CAN I do?”

If someone tells you,”THIS is you now. You’ll never get better. You’ll only get worse.”…What is best…to believe them, to accept it, to let that disability define you, limit you?   -Or-   do you decide to refuse to let that disability define you, decide that you will adapt, however that may be? You will press on!

Dealing with disability doesn’t have to mean focusing on personal limitations.

You can change your focus.

You can decide to take control of your attitude rather than let it be hijacked by the challenges of dealing with disability.

I’m not saying it’s easy. I’m not saying that you can simply wish away the problem. No, the struggle is real. The struggle is constant. A conscious decision must be made, every day, a deliberate effort to push the problem to the back of your mind (as much as possible). Mindset makes all the difference.

Sometimes I get pretty down on myself because of my disability. I might feel sorry for myself, get angry at my circumstances,or become frustrated beyond words.  But, viewing myself as a victim never helps.

Dealing with disability is a challenge to be sure! A constant struggle, a mental marathon. Sometimes it seems too hard to find the motivation to press on. But, don’t give up. Don’t give in. You’re not alone.

It’s so encouraging to see someone maintain a positive attitude in a difficult situation.

If you’re dealing with a disability, please watch this video.

Sean Stephenson, thank you for sharing your invaluable experience with us!

Also, there are many encouraging experiences that can be read on jw.org. Just type ‘disability’ in the search box. Here’s one that I enjoyed.

 

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Wake up and live

This morning, before work, before breakfast, I sat in my dark living room looking at my smartphone with dull, blurry eyes. Sipping my 1st cup of coffee—– Slowly waking up. (Slowly wasting time.)

came across this article and was surprised to find in it some thought provoking content.

One day the writer realized he wasn’t living his life the way he wanted. He realized that he was in control. To change something, to wake up and live, or continue down the unhealthy path he was on; with numb mind and slumped shoulders. His choice.          

He took charge, made changes , and is now helping others to do the same. 

I started thinking – what is one thing I can improve?

I’d like to think more. I’d like to generate some creative steam, to be passionate about something. But it’s difficult. There’s no time, I’m too busy, too tired.

Will I continue down this unhealthy path of mental laziness, trudging along in the trench of monotony? Or will I narrow my focus, break the routine, and make time to live?

Driving to work this morning, in an effort to escape the all too familiar holiday music and the tiresome top 20 songs , I turned off the radio.

Don’t get me wrong, I love music… real music. Music that is good because I like it. I get so tired of being spoon fed the same 10 songs Mon- Fri , 8-5. Day in and day out.

So, in my car, I turned it off and after a few minutes of road noise…. my brain turned on.

One thought that kept bobbing in my mind was, “I’m so caught up in the day to day that there’s just no time to live.”

Well, what is one thing I can change?

I’ve got it!

Tomorrow morning I will drink my coffee in the garage, not the living room. 10 minutes of lifting weights instead of scanning the news highlights. A simple break. A positive move. It won’t cost me anything and it won’t take time from anything, or anyone important.

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Joseph Conrad

“It’s extraordinary how we go through life with eyes half shut, with dull ears, with dormant thoughts. Perhaps it’s just as well; and it may be that it is this very dullness that makes life to the incalculable majority so supportable and so welcome.”

“My task which I am trying to achieve is, by the power of the written word, to make you hear, to make you feel — it is, before all, to make you see.”

The above quotes are from Lord Jim. Definitely worth the read.

Jim does something that he never imagined he was capable of. Something wretched. He always imagined himself a hero, but that bloated image of self was shattered in the blink of an eye.

Leaving everything and everyone behind, he sets off to put the pieces together…to forget who he was and find out who he can become.

 

The first Joseph Conrad book that I read had his biography in the preface. Very interesting! Basically, he writes from his experiences.

Orphaned at the age of 11. Struggling in school, struggling with chronic poor health, physical and mental. At the age of 13 he announced his intentions to become a sailor. 3 years later, he took to life at sea.

Attempted suicide at 20 years of age…a revolver to the chest.

Heart of Darkness ,Victory, Lord Jim, Point of Honor…the more I lean about Conrad, the better I his appreciate his stories…his struggles.

He faced some real challenges but that didn’t hold him back, didn’t get in the way of his dreams. He pressed on.

 

 

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