MC's Whispers

Whispering Silences

Archive for the tag “appreciation”

A bad ally

©MCD

Just give me some time”, she muttered as she stormed off.

Tiredness is a sneaky feeling. It gets you to the extent where you want to punch something to let off steam, but at the very same time, you feel the urge to break down in tears.

Time is vital. It helps you regroup, regather your thoughts, and re-energise yourself to be able to keep going.

But solitude also works. Particularly because it constrains you from saying something you shouldn’t or cannot retract.

When you’re exhausted, go somewhere alone. Perhaps even better, sleep it off.

Tiredness is never a good ally.

He showed up with a flower, after what he deemed a revitalising period of time.

She couldn’t help but smile.

All we really want is to feel important and appreciated, and that all the work we do – regardless how meaningless it may seem – is noticed and valued.

Missing the simple

©Lisa Fox

When someone tells you there is not enough time in the day to do everything necessary, believe them. It is only when you are found in the same situation that you realise how true it is to not be able to fit everything you must do into the few hours of the day.

When we over-cramp our schedules, taking on more responsibilities that we can physically endure, we are testing our own limits.

This is when we appreciate the simplest things the most: sleep, a warm bed, a massage, good company, a cabin away from everything, and calm and silence.

Also part of Friday Fictioneers

Change the perspective

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A storm was brewing. Literally. The weather was turning piercingly icier and the sun was in hiding. You could feel the wind changing.

But also metaphorically. People were evidently affected – they were colder in attitude too. Agitated, nervous, and too easily irritated.

It was all wrong. For no sensible reason.

So she decided to leave.

These are the best decisions; the get-up-and-go-on-the-inspiration moments. Because if you don’t think about certain things too much, they end up being the best decisions you ever make.

She acted upon the impulse to flee. And travelled all across the world to where the climate was exactly the opposite.

She didn’t exactly encounter a heatwave, but a much warmer weather, and a much kinder folk. People who had much less – of material belongings and wealth – yet much more heart and goodness. They knew how to enjoy the utmost of what they had, and to appreciate the instances, the smallest of heart-warming gestures, the gratitude of having even the slightest of everything.

If you step back from your own world and delve into someone else’s, perhaps you’ll just realise how lucky we are but never acknowledge it enough. Be grateful for everyday; for the goodness around you; and focus your energy on all you want to create, not on what you want to get rid of. Know who you are and what you want to achieve, but be careful who you choose to walk with in life, because in the wrong company you’ll never reach your destination.

Winter Wandering

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She woke up with the rejuvenating sensation that all is well in the world, simply because outside it was snowing since the previous night.

For some reason, snow always makes everything seem better.

She was genuinely happy after a long time.

He spooned her into a warm hug though which her optimism diffused into him. And that’s how great ideas – at the spark of a moment – are born; how adventures are concocted.

Let’s go!” he called as he threw the blanket off them, forcing her to get up and get dressed.

Promise it’s worth it!” he added.

She thought it was difficult – almost impossible – to find herself in a relationship where there was mutual understanding, shared craziness, and above all, truthfulness. But as they grew and evolved together, they both realised that a person who feels appreciated will always do more than is expected. And most importantly, they would actually act on the words they say. Perhaps that was the most difficult of all these days. Because it’s so easy to say a lot, and fill each other with expectation and dreams; but how often do we take the step to realise them all?

The drive to the wooden cabin up the mountain was majestic. The snowy white blanket acted as a tranquiliser, and they soon forgot about every trouble they had at that moment. For now, all that was important was to enjoy the very moment, away from everything and everyone. It was just them, there, happy. In snow.

Making and breaking

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The problem with loving too much is that you don’t realise that while you’re elevating others, they’re breaking you.

You allow people to smuggle you around, as if ashamed of you’re there, instead of being proud of your presence.

We want to believe that karma will compensate our sacrifices and goodness will be returned.

But often we just need to see reality for what it is.

Also part of Weekend Writing Prompt #239

The things you shouldn’t know

You know that saying, “it’s all fun and games until someone gets hurt”? Well, it’s true for every age, and all contexts.

Happiness comes in waves. But like love and pain, it comes unexpectedly and leaves the same way.

The key to being happy – and most of all serene – is acknowledging that you yourself and you alone are responsible for that precious feeling. You’re the only one who can control your feelings even if most times it doesn’t seem so easy or plausible to do.

It’s a magical and refreshing sensation to allow yourself to get carried away in the moments. Those instances that take your breath away, that have you tearing with laughter so much that your abs hurt. Those glimpses of time you look back on and smile nostalgically.

But there is always that inexplicable – demonic – hunch that nothing is so perfect; and it won’t last.

So what do you do when you see something you shouldn’t have? What if you notice a message you shouldn’t be aware of? Or overhear a conversation you weren’t meant to? How do you “un-know” things you shouldn’t know? How do you press “undo” on life events?

It’s mindblowing how emotions can change in a millisecond. How your entire perspective can alter by knowing something you shouldn’t. How everything moves from one extreme to another simply because of a differentiation of facts. It’s as quickly as clouds of rain form in a clear blue sky and hail begins to pour.

But that you can’t really control.

Can you?

Or is it there to show you something? Because often things happen to remind you what you deserve and to rethink where you are and what you’re devoting your energy and time on. Is it worth it if you’re not feeling happy, appreciated and valued?

Emerging from the shadows

People fear a lot of things. But one intrinsic fear that may be common to all is the fear of being forgotten. We all want to make an impact, to leave a footprint in this world, to be remembered as having lived here.

We live in a world where everyone is trying to be famous, for anything no matter how futile and for however short-lived the duration may be.

In an era where everything can be broadcast and gone viral in a matter of seconds, the millennial generation is one addicted to attention. Everyone wants to be branded even though they’re not good at anything. We need the spotlight to satisfy our internal shortcomings.

The truth is, we need recognition and the broader social acceptance to displace the negative voices we alone create in our heads; to feed our own self-appreciation, self-acceptance and value. An old Japanese Samurai proverb says, “don’t speak bad of yourself. For the warrior within hears your words and is lessened by them”. Our need to receive recognition from others is ultimately founded by our need to prove our own value, firstly to ourselves. It’s always easier to complain, judge and condemn than to lift each other up. This is the culture we’ve created. But what everyone is truly seeking, is to enhance our own value. We depend on the recognition of others, because we’ve associated this feeling with that of our own self-worth and satisfaction.

Yet at the same time as searching for acknowledgement, we withhold from even asking for it. We suppress our wants out of fear of appearing egoistic, weak or needy. We hide in the shadows, but don’t want to be invisible. It’s a paradox of human nature. We desire to stand out from the crowd but refrain from making the effort to do so.

Those inclined and used to working backstage know first-hand the problems of not being appreciated or acknowledged for your work. Because in catchy songs, everyone praises the singer and never the songwriter; in wonderful books, hardly anyone ever remembers the writer, and when the novel becomes a movie, it is even associated with the actors that bring the plot to life, not the person who had the idea behind it all.

The difficulty of working in the shadows is that you never get recognized for your work and someone else always gets credit and is remembered for it. The problem in making others look good is that you never get to exhibit your true potential. It’s like you’re trying to leave your footprint but someone else always tramples on top of it and leaves their mark instead.  The world will thus never know your worth because you don’t speak up, because you’re the one who pushes others forth and remains behind the scenes, hoping to at least receive some form of acknowledgement and value.

Mother Theresa had said that “there is more hunger for love and appreciation in this world than for bread”, and it is a common fact that recognition is the best method of improving work motivation and employee engagement. It is essentially a driving force for life itself: for if you don’t show appreciation to those who deserve it, they’ll eventually learn to stop doing the things you appreciate.

On Gratitude

The Law of Attraction states that we entice what we emit, i.e. positive thoughts will bring positive outcomes. But the fundamental of all positive psychology ‘secrets’ is that of gratitude. The feeling of being thankful for what we already have. The appreciation that will help us receive more things to be grateful for.

Gratitude is a selfless act that leads to the improvement of your well-being. Grateful people are more open, more communicable, more pleasant, less neurotic, less stressed, more optimistic, happier, and with stronger interpersonal relationships.

Saying ‘thanks’ lies in far more than what you express with words. It’s about the actions that occur without speaking.

It’s about being thankful for the invisible safety net in your life formed by that indispensable network of family and friends around you who will be there for you no matter how much you yell, disappoint or push them away. It’s the people you know it’s ok to explode around,  because they’ll still be there with the outburst calms down. It’s those who help you through quarantines and lockdowns, but who are also there before and after them. Those who help you bounce back up when you don’t have the mental strength to even pull yourself up when you fall. Those who will do whatever they can to help without expecting anything in return because they know you’ll do the same if needed.

It’s important to feel grateful for the things we take for granted. Because it’s those little things that help us survive. And it’s those that we need the most to be happy. And grateful for it.

Life secrets from a cat

Have you ever observed a cat? No, not just seen one, but actually studied how it behaves, its features and characteristics, its every move?

Cats are amazing creatures. There’s a reason they were worshipped as a deity and considered sacred in Ancient Egypt. They are free in every sense of the word. They have their own attitude, and are subject to no-one. Even though you think you own them as your pet, it is you who actually has the privilege of living with a cat. Cats choose who they’ll devote their attention to, when they would like to play, where they want to sleep and how much they feel like eating. Yet, they’ll be there for you whenever you need them, even when you don’t know you need someone, they’ll sit by you (or on you), transmitting their warmth and soothing purr, thus healing you. Cats are true friends.

That is why so much has been said about them. And even more can be learnt from them.

Stéphane Garnier learnt so much from living with a cat that he wrote two best-selling books on how to live and think like one. He acknowledges that cats are calm, observant, wise, elegant, charismatic and proud. In fact, he argues that they have found the secret of how we should all live, regardless of our species, and through his books, diffuses the knowledge drawn from cats into leading a better life.

Cats never give up. And that is perhaps the most important lesson of all.

They understand that fear serves no real purpose, and they believe in themselves and their power to achieve whatever they set their minds on.

They know how to be authentic, maintain their superiority at all times, and how to love themselves.

They can maintain their calm no matter what life (or anyone else) throws at them, are prudent and know how to have fun, even on their own.

They are kind-hearted, simple and communicate what they want.

They’ll forgive you and themselves too for making mistakes, accepting what has passed, while being well aware of how to pursue the lives they want.

Cats can teach us to respect the choices we – and others make – be it what we choose to eat, wear, occupy ourselves with, or believe. Everyone is free to make their own choices. We should respect and stand by them if this would lead us to tranquillity and happiness.

Above all though, cats appreciate how to love with all their hearts, because everything is temporary and we should enjoy every single breathing minute we have.

Perhaps our best life coach would be a cat. If only we too could be more like them.

Those mornings

©Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

It was mornings like those that made all the difference.

Laying out the table looking into the garden. Feeling the calmness infuse inside you. Happily joining forces to cook up breakfast and willingly decorating and serving it as if you’re up for a Michelin star at a world-renowned restaurant.

Sitting down for a meal as if it’s the most important thing you’ll do all day. Savouring every moment of it. Because you know what matters is here and now. Being in that precise moment and nowhere else.

Preparing for the rest of the day with a simple process as this.

Also part of Friday Fictioneers

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