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Backwards Living January 1, 2011

Posted by nrhatch in Happiness, Life Balance, Mindfulness, People.
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Often people attempt to live their lives backwards: 

They try to have more things, or more money, in order to do more of what they want so that they will be happier.

The way it actually works is the reverse: 

You must first be who you really are, then, do what you need to do, in order to have what you want.

~ Margaret Young

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New Year’s Day.  Time to begin again . . . perhaps for the first time.  Time to figure out who YOU are so that you can live the life of YOUR dreams.

Not THEIR dreams for you.  YOUR dreams for you.

Where to begin?


When to begin?


Look deep.

The answers lie within.

Thoughts to Ponder:

* Don’t worry about what the world wants from you.  Focus on what makes you feel more fully alive. What the world really needs are people who are fully alive. ~ Joseph Campbell

* Nature does not ask, “what do they want me to be?”  Its glory lies in its authenticity.

* To be nobody but yourself ~ in a world which is doing its best, night and day, to make you everybody else ~ means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight; and never stop fighting. ~ e.e.cummings

* Always remember that you don’t have to be what they want you to be. ~ Mohammad Ali

* Success is sharing the best parts of yourself with the world.

* Know thyself ~ Oracle of Apollo at Delphi, Greece

* Happiness flows from being true to yourself.

* Turn the spotlight inward. ~ Gandhi

* To thine own self be true. ~ Shakespeare

* You have as many reputations as you have acquaintances.  None is accurate.  Be who you really are.

* People are unhappy because they aren’t being truthful with themselves.   Being truthful with yourself plugs you into your inner power. ~ Suze Orman

* When you stop hiding who you are, you have more energy to become more fully who you want to be.

* Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony. ~ Mahatma Gandhi

* To be a success in life is more than racking up dollars in your bank account ~ it’s about being the best YOU that YOU can be. 

Related posts:  Silence The Mind * The Goal Behind All Goals Happiness, Harmony, and IntegrityOur Internal CompassAccess Your Inner Wisdom * Create The Life Of Your Dreams * Doubt

NPR Challenge: The Namesake January 1, 2011

Posted by nrhatch in Fiction, Nature, People, Word Play.
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170px-Maes_Old_Woman_Dozing“Some people swore that the house was haunted, and wondered how I slept at night. I expect they pictured me sleeping with one eye open.”

“Did you, Grandma? Did you sleep with one eye open?”


“What did you see?”

“Well, it wasn’t so much what I saw, as what I heard.”

“Tell me! Tell me what you heard, Grandma.”

“I don’t know that I should.”

“Please, Grandma? Tell me.”

“Won’t it give you nightmares?”

170px-Suushi_Yurei“No, I’m brave. I’m five now. Nothing scares me.”

“Hmm . . . where should I start?”

“Tell me what the house looked like.”

“All right. The house was old.”

“Older than you?”

“Yes, by quite a bit. When I was born, the house had already been standing on the edge of the forest for more than 50 years.”

“Oh, that is old!”

“Yes. As children, we skirted around it when we walked through the forest.”


“It seemed that it wanted to be left alone. We obliged.”

“What does ‘obliged’ mean, Grandma?”

“. . . I forget sometimes that you are just five. Obliged means that we went along with its wishes.”

“Like when I want to stay up past my bedtime and Mom lets me. Is that obliged?”


180px-Leonardo_Skeleton_1511“Was the house haunted back then?”

“Don’t know. Never got close enough to find out.”

“Who lived there?”

“No one.”

“Why not?”

“It’s a long story.”

“Tell me!”

“Your grandfather was born in the house . . .”

“The grandfather I never met?”

“Yes. The one you never met ~ he died the day you were born.”

“Oh. Why didn’t he live there?”

“His mother died giving birth to him. His father sent him away to live with a distant aunt.”

“So the father lived there by himself?”

“No. He vanished.”

“Vanished? Like the Cheshire Cat?”

Chuckling, “Maybe. No one knows what happened to him.”

“That’s why the house was empty?”


“When did you move there?”

“After your grandfather finished school, he returned to the village and moved into the empty house.”

“Did you meet him then?”

“Yes. When I was seventeen, I went to the forest to pick blackberries. I stepped into a gopher hole and twisted my ankle.”

“Did it hurt?”

“Yes. It swelled and I knew I couldn’t walk back to the village.”

“What did you do?”

“I took my scarf, tied it around my ankle for support, and found a branch to use as a crutch.”

“And you walked back to the village?”

“No, the village was too far. I hobbled a short ways and saw smoke coming from the chimney of the house in the woods.”

220px-Francesco_Hayez_001“Grandpa was there!”

“Yes. He had just moved back and was raking leaves outside. He ran over and helped me to a bench.”

“What happened then?”

“He got me a glass of tea, made sure I was comfortable, and then ran to the village to get my parents.”

“He sounds nice.”

“Very nice. You remind me of him.”

“I do?”

“Yes. And you’re his namesake.”

“His namesake?”

“Patrick was his name too.”

“Oh. What happened after you met him?”

“We fell in love, got married, and I moved into the house.”

“Weren’t you scared?”

“No, your grandfather looked out for me.”

“Why don’t you live there now?”

“It’s not there any more.”

“What happened?”

300px-Mort“Your grandfather had an accident. He fell asleep while reading, and knocked over the kerosene lamp.”

“And the house caught on fire?”

“Yes. It burned to the ground.”

“Were you there?”

“No. I was here ~ you had just been born.”

“What happened after the house burned down?”

“Things changed. Nothing was ever the same again after that.”

Related post:  Fun with Words: NPR Challenge

* * * * *

Submitted to NPR Challenge on 9/17/10.  NPR’s right of first publication expired 12/31/10.  Official Rules:  Three Minute Fiction

Inspiration:  My Literary Quest ~ NPR Three Minute Fiction

Related post:  Need Random Story Ideas?  Check This Out (Maggie Madly Writing)