“Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that.

Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.”

-Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr

Heart Cloud (credit: unknown)

Today, as many of us celebrate Valentine's Day, our thoughts turn to love and those whom we love. But do we really understand what that simple, yet very powerful word, LOVE, means? This four letter word holds power, and not just power over our emotions, but also power over the prospect of world peace.

So what does this word mean? Personally, this is a tough word for me to reflect on since my natural inclination is more toward the intellectual pursuits not understanding my emotions. Yes, as a counselor I deal with emotions, but note what I wrote: "my" emotions. I have no issue in helping others to come to an understanding of their own emotions and how they affect their lives. But my emotions, well, that's a whole different story.

So, what is love? This is what the Christian bible states about love:

1If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but do not have love, I have become a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. 2If I…

Read more: Rest Stop (Valentine's Day) ... love is an action

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Today, Christians around the world will receive ashes on their forehead as a reminder that we came from dust and will once again return to dust. Therefore, "Ash Wednesday" is a time to pause, reflect on our lives, and make plans to remove from our lives those aspects of ourselves which do not lead us closer to our God.

The practice of pruning our lives of those areas which are not healthy or which take us away from our inner-peace, produces a sense of humility as we realize that we are not perfect, but that we have the ability to learn from our imperfections. Letting go allows us to be true to ourselves, and open to the guidance of others.

There are people who exemplify humility, and for me, the ideal example comes from Saint Francis of Assisi. He was a wealthy son of a powerful merchant father, who, after gaining personal insight, gave up everything to live in poverty and to serve the poor in the spirit of Jesus. It wasn't simply the giving up of everything that made Francis humble; it was his attitude and way of living.  In the book "The Way of St. Francis: the Challenge of Franciscan…

Read more: Rest Stop (Ash Wednesday) ... letting go

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Winter Scene (Credit: unknown)

As I write this I, like millions of other people along the NE coast of the US, have hunkered down in the house due to the blizzard occurring. As of this moment it is still snowing and I already have two feet of snow on the ground.

Personally, I love snow. This event is a joy for me, and I am like a kid again. I see the beauty in the snow, it’s uniqueness, the sights, sounds, and smell in the air. All of this is perfect for me! Yet, I do realize that my love of this weather is not shared by everyone. There are many people who despise this weather, and, there are those who have been panicking for days before the start of this storm.

I am not in any way judging anyone, since each us views life from our own perspective, and that perspective is our reality. So, although I was not panicking over this storm, those that were truly felt fear. Panic is defined as: “a sudden overwhelming fear, with or without cause, that produces hysterical or irrational behavior, and that often spreads quickly through a group of persons.” (Panic at Dictionary.com. 2006. 24 Jan. 2016. http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/panic) One of the reasons we panic is because we allow ourselves to “live” in the future where we have no control over the events. That realization of our lack of control brings on our panic.

Living in the moment is when we will feel at peace, but living in the moment is not always easy to do. In this short video I talk about ways we can change our perception to therefore change our reality to find peace.

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kfMN_UXaBiQ]

Share with us your ways of coping with events which otherwise would worry or panic you.

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If you're ready to explore life coaching, I would be honored to help. You can read more here about my life coaching practice or call me directly at 301-850-2177. 

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Read more: Rest Stop (Saturday) ... coping with the Blizzard 2016

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Today, in the USA, we remember and celebrate the pastor and civil rights activist, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. In honor of Dr. King and all he stood for, I created this collage of three of his quotes for us to reflect.

I believe that Dr. King's message is universal, and a call to action for us to live each day in love and justice.

How can each of us live his statements in a concrete way?

Share with us your thoughts.

... continue the conversation here or on social media ...

If you're ready to explore life coaching, I would be honored to help. You can read more here about my life coaching practice or call me directly at 301-850-2177. 

... continue the conversation here or on social media ...…

Read more: Rest Stop (Monday) ... celebrating peace & unity

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Do you hear that sound? What sound, you ask? The sound of calm after the holidays.  The moment when we realize the guests have left and the errands are complete.  The moment when we finally look around and notice all we have missed while immersed in the hustle and bustle of preparing for the holiday.

Personally, the days immediately following New Years Day are mixed emotion days for me.  The first couple weeks of January I relax in the glow of Christmas and the expectation of new beginnings. Yet, intermingled amidst my joyous feelings there is a feeling of sadness as I realize that the holiday season has ended as "normal" life returns.  Since the time when I was a young child I have loved the period from Halloween to New Years because of the festivities, the traditions, the foods, smells, sights, etc.  Yet it seems that as soon as Halloween is upon us, in a flash, we are past New Years Day!  As I sit writing this post I wonder where it all went.  I think back to the preparations, excitement, anticipation, expectation, then the joy of Christmas' arrival ... now what?  As I sit here and reflect I…

Read more: Rest Stop (Saturday) ... post holiday blues

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