On Perspectives: An IWSG Post

12:06 AM Elizabeth Seckman 56 Comments


It's been one of those busy weeks where every ounce of progress I've made in any area of my life just sort of feels hidden in the clutter on the floor, or the stacks of mail on the counter. I mean, you know you've made headway, but when you add in a week of appointments, a sick dog, and a bit life drama- you get that exhausting feeling that you've not really accomplished a thing. 

When life's little hassles wear me out, and I crave pulling the blanket over my head and staying in bed, I like to remind myself that right now, somewhere in this world, a child is starving. 

No, I'm not a sicko. I'm just forcing a change of perspective. Sure, I'm up at midnight writing this post as I wash the essential items for tomorrow I cherry picked from a laundry pile that's possibly in need of a building permit...I still have it pretty good. I'm warm, dry, and perpetually overfed. 

Remember, if you're busy counting blessings, you have less time to obsess about the insecurities and the problems. 


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Thanks to Alex Cavanaugh and this month's co hosts!

56 comments:

  1. Love the kitty photo. Back in college and grad school, I studied WWII. Whenever I hit a rocky patch, I remind myself about the people who had to live through the horrors of the war, the death camps, and losing so much, including their lives and loved ones. I know it's morbid, but it did help me put my life and troubles in perspective.

    I really hope you dog feels better. Best of luck.

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    1. Speaking of WWII, Viktor Frankl's "Man's Search for Meaning" had the biggest impact on my life. He was a concentration camp survivor and this book became the impetus for Carl Rogers's counseling theories. It's a bit of an academic read (ie, text book style) but it is so powerful. That single book changed my life more than any other read, well, except the Bible. It's a must read.

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  2. I've heard several stories of ill-health in people I know recently - that always makes me feel very lucky, and puts my life into perspective. I've still got my health, my limbs and my wits.

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    1. We really do take a lot of things for granted. It never seems to fail- I'll spend a day whining over something stupid- like my weight (which is totally in my control) and then hear that someone has had some real tragedy hit their life. Makes me feel about two inches tall.

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  3. You're too funny . . . and absolutely right, as usual :-)

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  4. Hugs! I'm back and I must say I love what you've done with the place. Sorry you're feeling overwhelmed, I was feeling the same way this summer. Shall I send Dean over? ;)

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    1. I've missed you!!! The place is looking quite spiffy, right? That's because Carrie Butler gave it an overhaul! Here you probably thought I learned something during your break.

      By all means, please, please send Dean over. Le sigh (is that how you lust in French?).

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  5. Well said, Elizabeth! There are many others in a crappier position than us.

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  6. Such a great reminder - if we're busy counting those blessing, we have less time for worrying, etc. And I love the idea of the laundry pile needing a building permit!

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    1. I don't know that I'm loving that laundry pile, but I do intend to laugh at it rather than let it suffocate me ;)

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  7. I'm at a place right now where that doesn't even help.
    Stop the world - I want to get off! LOL

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    1. You poor woman. I can't stop the world from spinning, but I will send you a hug.

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  8. Very true, there is always someone in a more crappy position. Although sometimes that still doesn't make things better

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    1. I agree. But sometimes, that's all we've got!

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  9. I love this post! Especially the part about the building permit! Really, my daughter came up with something like this "just change the perspective" idea, the other day. She asked her father and I, when she started to vent, to say something like, "How is the puppy today?" and start talking about her dog. I've used this two times in the last week now with her and each time it has worked. She takes a deep breath and slows down. I think a change in perspective is a must if one wants to stay sane, and keep friends...

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    1. She's a smart lady, like her parents! You know, when my kids were little, I always used distraction when they were working themselves up to a fit. They'd come to me to tattle or whine and I'd tell them something like- look at that cloud, it looks like a dinosaur. They'd forget all about what they came to complain about and spend their time looking for the dino in the sky. It works on my husband too, only with him, I'll say- I swear, there are just too many gratuitous boob shots on TV.

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  10. Cute kitten! I'm in one of those phases where everything's chaotic, too. I hope it calms down!

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    1. It will either calm down, or we'll adjust to the busier norm, right?

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  11. Oh, I had quite the perspective spin over the last month, so I'm hearing you loud and clear. It's so easy to forget how well things are when life gets busy. Thanks for this perspective. :)

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    1. Anytime, David. It can be hard to remember how lucky we are when we're in the midst of it. It's like climbing a mountain- you can't really appreciate the view until you reach the top.

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  12. Yep. A different perspective is always helpful. That kitty has the right idea.

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  13. I think I try the same approach, though more self-centered. I don't think about the starving children, but I do think about how I could be worse off. It's always good to keep a positive eye on things.

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    1. Mine is self-centered too. For me, I'm thinking, I could have just as easily have been born to one of those countries that doesn't have peace, food, or even clean water.

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  14. Too true. *high five* And speaking of being overfed, how about some cheese, eh?

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    1. I'm always in the mood for cheese. Mmm. Cheese.

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  15. Real life intrudes into our writing lives so often. Just weather the storm and keep going. It's what we writers do.

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    1. Yes, it is. Stupid real life, how rude it can be!

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  16. Great post! I really needed to hear this. I am so so so so blessed and I need to stop whining about what's NOT happening to me and focus on all the great things that are. Thanks for the reminder!! And I love the laundry and building permit analogy—I feel like that too much!! Lol. :)

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    1. You are rocking it! But yeah, there will always be some set backs. We just have to keep looking at the things we've accomplished.

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  17. Well said! It's funny how we let small problems get to us so often. But I can definitely relate to sick pets and piles of laundry! Sometimes when the little things pile on top of each other it can make perspective a bit harder.

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    1. I read once that constant stress over small problems can be as lethal to our health as major life stress. We have to adjust our thinking or let it pull us under.

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  18. Total awesomeness with this post, Liz! Despite the new WTF issue going on now, I'm pretty damn lucky. Wait until Friday, and I'll tell you 'bout laundry lady!! Love you bunches. (((HUGS))) Eva, IWSG Co-host

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    1. Lady, you are battling the process uphill, in the rain- with a side of mold. I have no reason to complain compared to what you handle every day. Hugs back to you!

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  19. I needed to read this as well. Thanks for the dose of perspective.
    I hope your life calms down and that your dog is okay.

    Love the new look of your blog - it's beautiful!!

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    1. My dog is doing so much better. She's back to her old (really old!) self. She even has a little bounce in her when it's food bowl filling time.

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  20. Very true. It's good to remember what we have to be thankful for.
    Also, loving the new look of your page!

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  21. I feel like I can never quite get caught up. Maybe there's comfort in knowing we all feel that way. But we have to find time to do the things we love...that's what life's all about!

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    1. But you make it look easy, Stephanie. I'd never guess you were ever overwhelmed.

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  22. I know how you're feeling; everything seems to be distracting me from writing my submission for the IWSG anthology. *sighs* Love that building permit for the laundry line. I'll use it on my daughter :)

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    1. I gave up. I couldn't even come up with an idea, and having a premise for a story is pretty important.

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  23. Yes, this! Sometimes all we need is a little change in perspective.

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  24. It helps that Celebrate the Small Things is only a couple days after IWSG.

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