Category Archives: Family & Relationships

Can I Join You?

When it comes to family,  people sometimes say “you need to be in their lives”, but they don’t mean just living with them in the same place. You need to engage in their world.

I have three brothers, and everyone of us has different interests. If we’re gonna rely on common activities to spend time together, then we might not see each others at all. It’s sometimes not enough to find a particular activity that you both enjoy and then set a date to do it together. That might be good for little bonding, but can you do better? Of course!

Instead of focusing too much on yourself and whether you’re gonna enjoy doing a specific activity with your sibling/child, you should join them in what they’re already doing. Yes I know that sometimes what they like  is boring to you, but if you want to truly be in their lives you should show some interest in what they’re doing and join them.

Think about how this will affect them. They will definitely enjoy it and appreciate you giving some of your time to join them and see what they like to do. And who knows? You might enjoy that specific activity as well. Life is not just about ourselves and doing what we like to do. What’s the point if we’re not gonna share it with the people we love?

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The Silent Deadly Critic

I’ve made a terrible discovery about myself not very few weeks ago. I am a bitter critic; unsympathetic and unmerciful critic!! How did I make this discovery? Well, I noticed a pattern in my thoughts regarding others. I tend to criticize the people I know harshly. Of course I do it silently inside my head, but that’s the worst part.

First before I talk about this issue I need to clarify a point. There’s a difference between criticizing and prejudging. I don’t prejudge people, like I don’t assume facts about them from how they look or how they talk. I always make the effort to know others myself and not rely on what I hear about them. But criticizing is pointing out the faults in others. Of course everyone has flaws and I talked about that in Chasing Perfection. Today I am not going to talk about accepting others flaws, but about how not to always bring it out.

When I criticize people what I basically do is concentrating on the bad things they did, their unpleasant habits, their poor choices, and so on. I know this sounds horrible and, as I’d like to say, inhumane. The reason why I didn’t know I am doing this appalling act is because I do it silently. I didn’t realize I was doing it until recently; maybe it’s entering adulthood which’s forcing me to become more mature and more aware of my thoughts and actions. Anyway, I am not in any position to judge other people’s decisions, choices, or actions. Why? Because I too have made the worst decisions and done many bad things and still have habits that I am trying to break, and it all affected my life greatly. So who am I to judge? Being a perfectionist is also a reason why I criticize 24/7.

You know now why I called it “silent” but why is it “deadly”? It’s deadly because concentrating too much on the bad things in someone makes you blinded and unable to see their unique amazing qualities. It also develops some form of mild hatred towards these people. All this affects your mental health negatively.

If this sounds familiar, then try the following to kill this lousy critic inside of you:
1. Give others a break: we all make mistakes, you and me included.
2. Put yourself in their shoes: try to imagine yourself in their situation. What are you going to do? How are you going to act?
3. Have some empathy: Try to understand what they are going through and why they’re doing what you’re criticizing.
4. Fix you’re own problems first: Before you look at other people’s fault, look in the mirror first. What are the things you need to work on? Write a list and you will be surprised.

I am currently applying these principles in my life in hopes of becoming less criticizing and more understanding. I hope this will be helpful for you too.

Wish you a peaceful happy life.
Cheers!

Do you think ‘I love you’ is a cliché? Well, think again!

‘I love you’, ‘I can’t live without you’, ‘you are my life’…etc. We all heard these words and phrases too many times, whether in cheesy romantic movies, corny pop songs, or anywhere else. Love became so shallow that the word has no deep meaning anymore. The movies, music, books, and almost everything around us portrays love as a relationship between a man and a woman. When you read the title of this post you probably thought about it that way. But that’s not right! Love has more to it than just that.

I like to act as a philosopher sometimes, so let me introduce you to some of my “philosophical” opinions on love.

What is love?
Love is the fuel we use every day to live. Love is the power that drives us to success. Love is the reason why we are happy. Love is how human beings and other creatures managed to live together on this planet. Love is something instinctive in the human nature.

What are the different forms of love?
– The love that you receive from your parents
– The love you give to your children
– The love between you and your spouse
– Your relatives who love you and you love them too
– Friendship is a form of love
– The love you have for your pet and the love your pet has for you
– Generally the love of human beings to each others
– The love of human beings to other creatures on Earth
– The love of human beings to Earth
– The love of oneself
– The love of God to mankind
See, love comes in different shapes and sizes! It is everywhere around us. So even if you are single, that doesn’t mean you have no love in your life. You just need to look deeper and you’ll find it.

Do we need love?
The definition of love I mentioned above shows clearly that it is something important in order to live a sufficient happy life. And as I said before, it is an instinct in us so we can’t help but feel it, give it, or want to receive it.
If you want to check if that’s true or not, I want you to close your eyes and imagine this world without love…no family, no friends, no pets, or any source of love.
What do you think now? How is the world you imagined in your head? A place full of hatred, crimes, wars…etc. Isn’t it kind of what we are turning into? Why do you think that is? It’s because of the lack of real love in our lives. In fact, I think that the answer to world peace is simply love.

So what is your homework for today? You should let the people in your life know that you love them. Here are some simple tips you can use to spread love everywhere you go:
– Tell your parents that you love them and that your thankful for what they’ve done to you.
– Tell your children that you really care about them and you’ll always be there for them.
– Buy flowers or bake a cake and send it to your spouse when they are at work with a card saying that you love them.
– Visit your cousins, or your grandparents, or your in-laws and spend a day with them.
– Meet your friend for lunch/dinner and talk about the good old days and how grateful you are that they are in your life.
– Take more walks with your dog.
– Give money to charity, volunteer, buy dinner for a homeless person…etc.
– Adopt an animal, be kind to other creatures, get involved in an organization for animal rights…etc.
– Plant something in your garden or inside your house, take good care of it.
– Love yourself! You deserve it.
– Pray to God. Ask Him for guidance, for blessing, for grace, or anything you want because He will always be there for you. All you need to do is just ask.
And of course there are a lot of other things you can do. Whatever you choose, make sure you do it from the heart. You don’t know what this can result into; it could make someone’s day, or stop someone from ending their life, or make a stranger happy. So why not tell people ‘I love you’? Why not show it? You have nothing to lose, but everything to gain.

So start acting like a human and LOVE. Always remember that you should say it and show it. When you will truly love and care for the people in your life you will be happy and loved in return.

Wish you all a happy life full of love.
Cheers!

Friendship-wrecked

If there’s one thing we can all agree on that would be the importance of having a close friend in our life. Most of us have at least one close person to talk to freely about anything and everything, while knowing that we won’t be judged. That’s whom we call our bff, bestie, best friend, best mate, bro, my man…etc. Regardless the name we give them, they all represent the same person to us: a true friend. This reminds me of a quote by Bernard Meltzer “A true friend is someone who thinks that you are a good egg even though he knows that you are slightly cracked.” But what would happen if this emotional sanctuary is wrecked?

Researches show that the presence of a friend/friends in our life is very important for our mental health. No wonder that is true! I mean tell me how are you suppose to keep your sanity after a long tiring day at work without going out with your friends, or who’s gonna comfort you with a big bowl of ice cream after you’ve been let down by someone or something? We sure wouldn’t be able to make it through all these psychological ordeals without our friends. That’s why it is very important to have and to keep friends. Researchers also say friends may have a healthy influence on harmful behaviors such as smoking and drinking, and affects our mood and self-esteem. This in return helps to live healthy and promotes a longer life. But enough with the statistics and researches, you don’t need to know about all that because you’ve probably experienced it somehow. I know the reason you are reading this is possibly because you recently had a fight with a friend, a very dear one. So what is the right thing to do now?

You might be very angry because your friend did something you despise, or upset because your friend has got you in a terrible situation, or you fought again about your different political views…etc. and you might be feeling guilty by now and want to make up, but then your pride won’t allow you to or maybe your friend is the one who doesn’t want to. So let’s see how something like this can be tackled.

If you want to make things up between you and your friend you need to take a trip down memory lane first. Remembering all the sweet memories and the good times you’ve had with your friend will show you the importance of their presence in your life. You will also see how amazing this person is and how they affected you. It’s not only the good times you need to remember, but the bad ones too. Do you remember when you were having a bad day and your friend was the only person in the world who understood what you were going through and was able to draw a smile on your face? And do you remember who stood by you when you got into trouble? Yes, your friend; the one whom you fought with over something that might be insignificant. Friendship is one of the supreme gifts life can give you, and it would be such a shame to take it for granted. And no matter what the reason behind the fight is, I don’t think it’s worth it!

Now that you understand how stupid it was to declare war between you and your friend, it’s time to wave the white flag. I know that you’re probably saying “why don’t they come and make things up?” Well, let’s remember the famous quote by Gandhi “Be the change you want to see in the world.” Yes, be the one who’s willing to make the first step in the path of reconciliation even if you are not the one who started it all. I have few ideas to help you make things up with your friend. Some of it might sound too crazy for you, but why not try it?
1. You know your bestie’s favorite song, right? Then get up and walk to them and start singing their favorite song in front of everyone. Better yet, ask them to join you! Too crazy? Try the next one.
2. Write them a song or a poem to show them how precious the friendship is to you. If they wouldn’t read it then again, get up and recite it in front of everyone else.
3. Find out if there are going to be any concerts or shows in your town which your friend might be interested to see. Or maybe an art exhibit or even a new action flick in the theatres. Just buy two tickets of whatever they’d like to see and give one to them with a sincere apology.
4. Are you a good cook? Have you created any recipes before? Why not bake your friend their favorite cake or pie? Or better yet, cook them one of your creative dessert recipes. You can write your apology on the dessert and give it to them in a nicely decorated box.
5. Are you into handcrafted jewelry? A handmade bracelet saying ‘best friends forever’ or that has both your names on it can be a great way to remind them how great is your friendship. Also you can make them a necklace and use a picture of you together as the pendant.
6. If your friend is the one who started the fight and you are the victim here, you can do the following: ask them to meet you in their favorite café, diner, restaurant…etc. and talk to them frankly about the problem. Be straight forward and honest, as the always say “honesty is the best policy.” Tell them you are willing to listen and admit if you were wrong. But also tell them how they have wronged you in a certain way. Don’t be hostile though, try to be as calm and friendly and open-minded as possible. Try to show them how concerned you are about your friendship and that you are willing to make up and ‘forget and forgive’.
These are just some ideas, and I bet you can come up with better ones. Whichever way you are going to use, be sincere when you’re doing it.

Remember the quote “True friends are hard to find, difficult to leave, and impossible to forget.” So next time you feel like starting a fight with your friend, be careful of what you are about to say and remember that your friendship would be at stakes.

Tell me your opinions in the comments. You can also send me an email if you still have questions regarding this. Finally, I hope you the best of luck and a friendship that will last a lifetime.