Lee Wilkinson

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What would a year of positive living mean to you?

With all of of the challenges in the world at the moment and everywhere we look we are inundated with negative press, what would it mean to take a year of your life and only focus on the positive. I fully understand that ignoring suffering and wrong in the world is not responsible but how about a year of abstinence from tabloid journalism or watching reality TV Shows. How about focusing on what could be achieved in a year to change the direction of a life? What would your year look like?

  • Dec 28 2011: For the first 68 years of my life, I was required to be responsible in my thoughts, words and actions for every situation. Now, I am responsible primarily to only myself and I have chosen to be positive and free. I no longer worry about everyday human events, because I know that most of them are designed by others to manipulate us with flawed beliefs, or emotionally charged arguments that cleverly play upon our quest for security, humanity, loyalty, or honor. Be especially discriminating in the language that you accept. Know the definitions of words before acting upon them. Be aware of the demand upon your time. It's YOUR time.

    I am no longer concerned what others may think of me. What is important is what I think about me and how I can best relate to my existence. I have chosen to seek the TRUTH. I do not have the luxury of an infinite life to waste with things that are meaningless or obviously false. My Time is the only thing of value that I possess.

    I have chosen to strengthen my bonds with the remaining survivors of my family. I have chosen to learn as much as possible about things that matter to me. I have chosen to learn to fly so that I can be able to share this wonderful experience with others. I have chosen to live my life to it's fullest and to show others that it's OK to perceive things in a different way. It's preferable to be responsible for your own existence and to carry your share of the load and to pay your own way... This is the highest form of POSITIVE LIVING. To be TRUE to yourself. This requires self-disclipine, self-reliance, and an absolute dedication toward removing oneself from every conceivable negative influence.

    It's easy to step outside of the Box. The only thing required is your conscious decision to see reality from your own personal perspective and to realize that nearly everything you know is either someone's invention or someone's attempt to explain their interpretation of reality. Find your own path.
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      Dec 28 2011: What a wonderful reply Glenn, I thank you for this. It is especially wonderful that it is coming from someone who has lived a life, I am 56 and like you it would seem that it might have taken me a a few years for the penny to drop. The challenge as you say is to do this given all of the pressure we have on our daily life from many other ares, many of which we are completely unaware of as they have become so commonplace. Thank you again.

      Regards,

      Lee
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      Dec 28 2011: Very well said Glenn...in my humble perception:>)
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    Dec 29 2011: This is a brilliant idea and let me illustrate it with an story. Once, I was an accountant for a small police department, and one day the sergeant came in and told the corporal, "hey I took your idea and I've felt great for the past week!"

    When I asked him what he meant he explained that the entire staff had noticed that they were constantly irritable and annoyed. The corporal had hit on the idea that it was because they always listen to right wing radio every day on the way in to work, and suggested that they stop listening to see if it helped their mood. They all reported a more positive outlook once they stopped listening. The consensus was, whether you agree with right wing radio or not, it is designed to make you angry, and nothing more.

    So, yes, I think a year of abstinence from tabloid and reality tv would help us immensely to be able to focus our energies on something more constructive, like changing the direction not only of our own lives, but those of others.
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    Dec 28 2011: When I was in the army I attended a promotional education course and the Captain who taught it was by his own admission a sheep in wolfs clothing. That is to say he was a teacher first and happened to ware an army uniform. He was a great teacher and one thing which stuck with me from his lessons was the phrase he used "So what, now what?" I am suggesting the possibility of "What if?"

    Example: We look at the financial situation the world is in and we say, "So what, now what?' and they we go a step further and say "What if?" What if I just took action and ignored the pundits. I know this is pretty old stuff, hardly breakthrough, but if we did it instead of saying what a great idea, I wonder how much could be a achieved in a year?
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      Dec 28 2011: We can look at ALL challenges in our lives and the world around us, and sometimes it may feel overwhelming, because we realistically cannot solve all the challenges. I like that..."so what, now what"?

      A LOT can be achieved if/when we focus our energy realistically. I learned a long time ago that I cannot "fix" everything in this world. I can, however, make a difference in several situations when/if I focus my energy, talents, skills and knowledge on particular issues.

      One thing that has helped me be focused is this:
      "Grant me the serenity to accept things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference".

      It is called "The Serenity Prayer", and to me, it simply reminds me of the questions I explore to help me focus my energy:>)
      • Dec 28 2011: The initial point of reference that one has, is his "perception" of his existence in this present reality. Obviously, the reality is overwhelming in it's size and complexity. It is largely invisible, all powerful, confusing, always changing, mystifying, delightful, wonderful and frightening. It is sheer chaos to the "N"th degree....
        What is important to understand is that it is our "perception" of the chaos that bothers us. We already know that there is little that we can do to change reality.... So, we must rely on that which makes us one of the most successful forms of life on this Planet. We adapt. We sort through the stuff that we don't want and we keep the stuff that we do want. We learn to focus our "perception". That doesn't mean that we become oblivious to everything beyond our interests. We maintain our vigilance, but do not allow meaningless distractions to interfere with the pursuit of our goal.

        Trust your own intuition. It will not fail you. It is your Life Journey that you are on. Find the Path that works best for you. Know yourself. Be True to yourself. Maintain your personal integrity and your path will be rewarding, not only to you, but to all who know you.
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          Dec 28 2011: Dear Glenn,
          I do not feel "bothered" by "it", but rather percieve "it" to be a wonderful opportunity. Do you honestly think/feel we "are one of the most successful forms of life on this planet"? Really? Perhaps it depends on how one defines success.
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    Dec 28 2011: Hi Lee...long time no connect....great question:>)

    I year of positive living, would mean the same thing it did last year...the year before...and the year before that...etc.:>)
    I've often been accused of being a "Pollyanna"..."living in a fantasy world"..."not facing reality"...etc.

    I often ask...whose world? Whose reality? Why must I conform to other people's reality, when that is not what is in my heart and mind? Well, obviously, I don't! I know I can take in whatever information I choose to focus on at any given time. I like to be well informed and aware of all that is happening in our world, and I believe I am. I choose to focus on the good things that are happening...what we focus on expands. OH......did I say that before??? LOL:>)

    To focus on the good things that are happening our world, does not mean we need to "ignore" anything. We can be well informed, AND be aware of the good changes all around us...in my humble perception:>)

    You suggest a "year abstinence from tabloid journalism? How about a lifetime abstinence from that which is meant ONLY to sell crap!!!

    You suggest a year of abstinence from watching some TV shows? How about a lifetime choice to NOT watch those shows that do not, in some way positively feed us? I do watch some TV in the winter months...mostly public television...and in the summer months, the TV stays off for about 6 months. It's a choice. One only has to check the news on-line and further investigate those things that are meaningful....or not.

    To conclude, my year is probably always going to be focusing on those things that truly feed my heart and mind, so I guess I'll continue to live in a fantasy world..........or maybe.........my fantasy will become reality for more people?
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      Dec 28 2011: Hi Collen, I took a little sabbatical to try and work out what the hell I am supposed to be doing with my life:)
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        Dec 28 2011: And....you want to share your discovery? Or not...it's a choice:>)
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          Dec 28 2011: Well actually it's quite simple really. I think many people and definitely myself spend much of our lives looking to others for our success. Our spouses, friends, employers, government etc. In the end I had become castrated from my soul. No bodies fault just a slow process of trying to do the right thing instead of as Glen points out the true thing. In the last few months life has been quite good to me, I have a new job with a better income so that has taken care of many of my family concerns. Oddly enough it was after about three months of getting this job that I realised that the old voices had not gone away. You know: Is this it? Is there any more? I still want to be a writer. That sort of stuff. So the simple epiphany was, what if I dedicated a year of my life to me? My initial reaction was 'That's a bit selfish, what about my family?' Well I'm not off to trek to the North Pole for a year. It's simpler than that really. It's spiritual, it's cleaning up the to do list, it's submitting my manuscripts and it's living healthy and positively. I trust that in a year from now we can have this same conversation and I will have something to talk about. I would be happy to blog the progress and share what I am learning. That's it.
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        Dec 31 2011: Hi Lee,
        Thanks for sharing your thoughts, feelings, ideas, opinions and perspectives. I'm glad life has been "good to you", and my perception of life is that it is as good to us as we are to "it".

        It is possible to dedicate a year to the growth in your "self" while remaining within certain constructs, like family responsibilities. In my perception, the life we are living is always an opportunity for our own growth. It is not necessary to seperate those ideas. We can live healthy and positively within the life we have created for ourselves. In fact, in my opinion, that's what life is about all the time! Being in the moment and mindfully aware of everything and everyone around us is the most profitable self exploration we can have...in my humble opinion. Many people are searching for an outside resource to grow in his/her "self". Our everyday life experiences are filled with opportunity when/if we choose to notice:>) Share what you are learning with your "self" first and formost my friend, and you may discover a year of "positive living"....maybe even MORE than a year:>)
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        Dec 31 2011: BTW...Have you visited the site "What do you have to be grateful for today"? You might get some ideas:>)
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    Dec 28 2011: Good suggestion though a challenge for the majority, such as myself. But for those determined individuals, as a word of encouragement: A year is a blip on the radar screen. It can be done, would be worth it, and maybe one could write a book!
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      Dec 28 2011: I agree Lynn and I was also thinking about the book. The issue I see in so many self help books is that they are filled with a lot of Rah Rah and very little real life information. But you are right one year in a whole life is just a blip on the radar and could be well worth the effort.
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        Dec 29 2011: Title suggestion: The Year of Living Positively. (a nod to The Year of Living Dangerously)
  • Dec 31 2011: Hi Colleen,
    Thank you for taking the time to read and respond to what I wrote. I'm sorry if I was unclear, but I was talking about Humanity as a whole. The species has been able to adapt to nearly every location and climate on Earth (even the oceans and to the outer edges of the atmosphere)... In my second paragraph, I pointed out some "faults". I want to reiterate that these are the result of "Bad Programming". Contrary to what I believe is basic Human behavior, greed, vanity, violence and extreme lethality have been socially promoted in response to an unfulfilled desire to obtain something that we define as "Security". Many cultures have programmed their children to want wealth, and to be beautiful and famous, or to be powerful warriors, or even to be unconscionable predators, so that they can feel secure in their domination of any and all potential threats. The history books are full of examples of people who stopped at nothing to achieve wealth, or land, or power, or fame. As for violence, look at the Roman Gladiators, or others who practiced Human Sacrifice. Taking it one step further, how about the Genocides that have occurred throughout history on every occupied continent? Look what happened to the Jews, and the Native Americans...
    Don't forget Dresden,Tokyo and Shanghai, or Hiroshima and Nagasaki. These are the examples of "Bad Social Programming" that I was thinking about. I also want to include the practice of the wanton wholesale slaughter of all of the fish, fowl and mammals that our "civilized" societies all sanction.
    My point is that, we all want to live and be free, but our cultures have programmed us to disregard those same desires of other living things. Soldiers are programmed to kill the enemy. Hunters are programmed to kill their prey.
    Consumers have been programmed to ignore the fact that their dinner is a murdered creature.
    These are truths that pertain to not one individual, but to all of us.
    I hope we can agree with this.
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      Dec 31 2011: Glenn,
      I have not forgotten anything about history. The topic on this site is "What would a year of positive living mean to you?"
  • Dec 29 2011: Hi Colleen,
    Yes, I do feel that we are one of the most successful forms of life, but we're still newcomers on this planet compared to many other things. We seem to be fairly intelligent, we can adapt to almost any situation, we are curious about everything and we go to great pains to establish our relevance to everything that we perceive as "Reality".
    We do have our faults, though. We can be greedy, vain, violent and extremely deadly. I would like to think that these negative attributes are the result of "Bad Programming"received from one or more elements of society. I don't discount the reality of an occasional Psychopathic, nut-case, but rather I believe that people are actually pretty good, except for when they find themselves in chaotic uncontrollable situations, i.e. Panic, Riots, Wars, etc...
    I believe the individual's perception is too easily clouded with the public misconceptions of the day. We want to know the truth. We want to be loved and accepted. We want security. We want freedom. But, look at what happens, when lies are substituted for truth, and hostile animosity reigns. Imagine a life filled with fear, hatred and terrors beyond imagination. Try to imagine that you are a slave, a prisoner for all of your life... These are just a few of the things that certain organized segments of our civilization have done to the individual.
    Our best defense against this stuff is in our ability to know the truth, anticipate the dangers, remove ourselves from the threats and try to warn others...
    Here's my take on the truth; it doesn't exist in our news media, or with our leaders, or with our governments, because they are dedicated to obtaining power and they can only succeed by employing manipulative lies and half-truths to achieve this goal.
    We are in danger because we do not believe that we are being brainwashed.
    We have been lead to believe that there is safety in numbers. Not so- it just makes you a bigger target.
    Get out of the Box.
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      Dec 31 2011: Hi Glenn,
      I agree..."we seem to be fairly intelligent", however, I do not agree that "we adapt to almost any situation", especially in western cultures. We are very used to an abundant life, unlike many people in our world, and most people in western cultures don't like to "adapt" to any kind of discomfort. I also don't agree that many people are "curious" enough to do away with prejudice and discrimination. I also do not agree that we (in general) "go to great pains to establish our relevance to everything that we percieve as "reality". For example, the environment is "reality", and we have certainly not gone to "great pains" to establish our relevance to the environment. If we had, we would not allow it to be destroyed as we have done.

      You go on to say..."we can be greedy, vain, violent and extremely deadly". That doesn't seem like "adapting", in my perception. I do not have to "imagine a life filled with fear, hatred and terrors beyond imagination" Glenn. That has been a reality for me, and many other people in our world. What are you trying to say???

      Perhaps you could look at your comment again? You begin by saying..."Yes, I do feel that we are one of the most successful forms of life", and then...well....read the rest of your comment.

      You're advising me to "get out of the box"....amusing!!!
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    Dec 28 2011: Sadly, it would look a lot different than last year. Pollyanna in her rose-colored glasses seems to just dance right on by me. I like your suggestion that going on a serious mass-media diet is worth considering, and I will, thanks Lee.
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      Dec 28 2011: I suppose the balance is in being a responsible citizen and paying attention to the things we can have an effect on and then bypassing the other 95% of the media rubbish that distorts our vision.
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        Dec 28 2011: Agreed. There is no need to argue percentages.
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    Dec 28 2011: They say that if you make your statement to the Universe it will always comply with your needs. So this may well be coincidence but this link came in my e mail today.

    http://en.blog.wordpress.com/2011/12/27/project-365/

    Kick Off 2012 with Project 365

    by Erica Johnson

    If you were going to blog about one thing for an entire year, what would you choose?

    I thought it worthy of attention.
    • Dec 29 2011: Hi Lee,

      I just went through the link to the project-365. Good stuff... I don't want to sound overly optimistic but, I'm encouraged to find that there are so many people that are willing to walk on new and unfamiliar paths, so that they, too, can find themselves and learn what it takes to peacefully co-exist with their "reality". I would like to think that we are witnessing a major revolution in human social behavior and even more importantly, I suspect the dynamic overload of negative information is causing us to undergo a surprise paradigm shift in our cognitive evolution. We're not just getting older, we're getting smarter. We're more selective, more discriminating, more sophisticated in choosing the things we want to live with. We are very fortunate to have this optional choice available to us. Not all have been so lucky..... Go with it, Man! Put some Life in your Life!
  • Dec 28 2011: It would be hard just to focus on the positive aspects of life for one whole year.I won't be able to do it for even one day.What fascinates me is,hypothetically,if i am able live like that for one year, what impact will it have on me?? Maybe I will be more happier or maybe not. The best part of such kind of living will be the restoration of child like innocence we lost when we aged. Innocence is the wage we pay for our maturity.
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      Dec 28 2011: Yes, it does seem to be the trade off. But as you say it's still there at the bottom of the pile waiting to be dusted off again and used.
  • Dec 27 2011: Orgasmic in body, mind and spirit.