MC's Whispers

Whispering Silences

Archive for the tag “perspective”

Knowing One’s Own

Book cover NK.jpegThere is a special connection that ties people who write with each other. More so, when they share similar views and may recommend readings to each other. It is not often that I embark on a personal rant, but this is about a person who is more than my employer or my co-worker; he is my mentor and the person who always has some exciting book / author to recommend and some fascinating viewpoint to share.

Knowing One’s Place is Nicholas Karides’ first book, published in December 2017. It is a book of memoirs: those recited by the writer and those ignited in the reader. When I first asked him why he was writing a book, he told me it was because he wanted to put all his notes from his journals into some logic order. I was intrigued, as I am well aware at how his scrapbook-snippets consist of historical milestones, incidents of history that we quickly forget until someone reminds us of them again. His book is precisely what it promised to be: “Essays on journalism, diplomacy, and football”. It talks about the controversial state of journalism in today’s digital area of constant reporting from all sorts of media – at anywhere at anytime; it discusses the diminishing traits of bold world leaders in a time when everyone can rise to power (given the right connections); and it shares thoughts about a rapidly changing world with its never-ceasing developments. More than that, the book offers a greater insight and a different perspective into the place in which you were born and bred and which you shamefully come to realise you know little about. Cyprus features a great deal in the book, and it is the tool through which you get to know the writer a bit better, but also this European country that, albeit small, has suffered a lot and is still caught in the crossroads of history. As with every book, you appreciate every thing a little bit more when you are aware of the circumstances being discussed, and when you know the person holding the pen.

This is a book that is extremely well researched, calling upon a list of prestigious sources, well justified and above all really well written with the perfect dose of wit. Every word is important. And it manages to grasp your attention and maintain it until the very last page.

It’s a book about how we must value the time and world we live in, but also about the significance of education and the need to keep it alive. It serves as a reminder to constantly contemplate the circumstances that surround us, to reflect, and to engage in opportunities that may help us improve, both ourselves and the places we live in.

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Stretching your mind

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Why do we learn new things? Why are we even interested in something we know nothing about and may possibly not affect us?

We learn because it is how we grow. It is why as children we are so easily excited about almost everything, regardless of how nonsense it may later seem to us as adults.

There are many types of learning, for example, targeted learning simply to pass an exam; specialised learning to become experts in one (or only a few) specific areas; and broader life-long learning that never stops.

Education is the progressive discovery of our own ignorance” (Will Durant). It is how we find our place in the world and how we can discover new ways to make things better.

Indeed, as Benjamin Franklin said, “being ignorant is not so much a shame, as being unwilling to learn”. We should want to learn. We should desire to broaden our perspectives and widen our horizons. We should be willing to engage in more talk than just things we know much about.

 “The capacity to learn is a gift; the ability to learn is a skill; the willingness to learn is a choice” – Brian Herbert

Light up, light up

lampost-s-pier-sandra-crook

©Sandra Crook

In daytime, it seemed like a simple street lamp with its metallic surroundings and a white exterior. It was nothing special. At least that was what the majority of passers-by thought.

But one little girl believed differently. She saw in that lamppost a fairy tale. The first time she saw it, she said it reminded her of her father’s bedtime stories.

When night came, the lamp turned on; but in different colours. And when the first snowflake fell, the lamp turned itself into a lit-up snowball encasing Santa’s house.

Magic was there. You just had to want to see it.

 

Also part of Friday Fictioneers

Take a breath of life

https://pbs.twimg.com/media/BuY3ZuxIEAAVFHC.jpgTake a deep breath. Slowly. Inhale and feel the air enter your lungs and fill your insides. Close your eyes. Now exhale. Free your mind of your thoughts. Allow yourself to be conscious of what you’re doing: you’re not just breathing. You are being alive.

Now do something more. Don’t just exist. Try to live.

You don’t need to worry so much about everything. Life has a way of making everything work out. Some way or another everything will fall into place.

And remember, smile. It’s the prettiest thing you can wear, and it’s contagious.

You’ll always be hit by negativity – from the people surrounding you to events that affect you. But you need to train your mind to see the positive behind it all, or rather despite it all. Don’t allow a little negativity to stop you from seeing all the good that’s around you.

Happiness, they say, comes from inside you. You just need to find the motive to bring it out.

It’s all a matter of choice. Just like the quality of your life depends on the quality of your thoughts.

So breathe.

Believe that better things are coming.

Breathe.

Everything will be all right.

When things go wrong

cat-tigerThings are bound to get rough. It’s a fact of life. Nothing is perfect all the time. There comes a moment when things will go wrong. And sometimes, too many things go wrong for too long. But like Charles R. Swindoll said, “life is 10% what happens to you and 90% of how you react to it”.

There are days when you won’t want to get out of bed, out of fear that something (even more) terrible will happen. Days when you’re overcome by negative thoughts, when you’re convinced that someone cast a spell on you – the neighbour, the person who competes with you for a parking spot, those others who are always jealous of you but hypocritically act as if they’re happy for you. And somehow, your mood drops, you don’t feel like doing anything, seeing anyone or even getting out of the house. Because you know that when one thing goes wrong, a whole lot of others will follow. And they usually do. Something breaks that you can’t fix; your computer gives up on you; you lose your lucky charm that you’ve had for years.

They say there is a reason things happen. You just never find out what it is.

But what you need to force yourself to do is to abandon the negative thoughts. Being negative attracts negativity. And in the same sense, being positive will turn things around. Try to smile and the sun will shine a little brighter. But most of all, surround yourself people who offer more than sympathy. People who will embrace you, look out for you and persuade you that there are things in life worth being grateful for. And if something goes wrong now, it’s because something even better is on its way.

You just have to believe.

 

Also part of Daily Prompt: Sympathy

A road to a different view

danny-boweman-1

©Danny Bowman

They told him the difficult, winding roads, the ones less travelled are the ones that would lead him to the most beautiful destinations. To places he had never seen before, never even imagined. He decided to take the risk because he wanted some peace of mind.

It was cloudy, perhaps even preparing for rain. And the gravel was rough; he could feel his car panting. But he was determined to go on.

He could see it up ahead. Tranquility was expecting him.

It was as if an entire mountain was waiting for his arrival to show him a different perspective.

 

Also part of Friday Fictioneers

Roots and wings

https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/99/a8/52/99a85230057e9941cb6b01a6ba3711e3--black-tree-art-prints.jpgThere is a saying, “if you don’t like where you are, move; you are not a tree”. People were meant to move around, to explore, to evolve. Instead, with the passing of time, we have become so afraid of change that we fear the slightest disturbance of our known environment. We become rooted in one place, often because we don’t have the courage to risk and see what more is out there.

And as such, we close our minds to everything around us. We refuse to accept anything different to our own perceptions, or consider something further from our beliefs.

We become so accustomed to routine, that any turbulence to it is considered lethal; when in fact, it is the other way around.

We encage ourselves in a life that shrinks us and diminishes us instead of helping us grow and develop. We aren’t making ourselves better, rather, we persevere in a mediocrity and preserve a life unchanged, with the same mentality and the same lens on life.

But what we fail to see, is that as we grow, our surroundings change, our needs become different, and so do our characters. We have a different perspective on life when we are young, springing into the world, compared to when we are mature, looking back at it.

After all, we are supposed to receive and pass on two gifts: roots to remind you where you are from, and wings to show what you can become. It is only when you use the latter that you discover where you can go.

The “or” in choices

http://simplymusic.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/01/fresh-perspective-1024x336.jpgThe day began a bit strange. Because it should have begun the way it usually does. With the alarm buzzing and her hand emerging from under the covers to slam it silent. Then she would roll over the other side. And two minutes later jump out of bed having just realised she was supposed to get up and go to work.

But today it was different.

The alarm didn’t go off.

Or rather. It did. She just didn’t hear it.

And she suddenly found herself wavering between options. Or rather dilemmas. She could get up and go to work, making up an excuse for her tardiness. Or she could stay in bed and call in sick. But then she should also cancel her coffee appointments, in case somebody from work happened to see her. Or she could change them to house calls instead of café meetings.

She could chose to get up and deal with the world. Or she could stay in bed and pretend it’s all hushed away.

Either way, she had to make a decision.

We all do. There is always an “or” in whatever choice we need to make. It just depends on the perspectives we see things at any given moment. And how we choose to react to the options that lie before us.

 

Also part of Daily Prompt: Or

The curse of a leap year

29_02_2016 Google DoodleThere is this question that will often set your mind in motion: “what would you do if you had an extra day to live?”

Every four years, we get that extra day. An additional 24 hours to do pretty much anything we want to do.

So, how do you spend it?

Do you stay in bed a little longer? Do you try to get more work done? Do you enjoy more time with friends? Do you exercise? Do you laugh more?

Do you experience what that extra day is there for? To realise how lucky you are to have survived so far and to be strong and healthy enough to continue even further? To be able to surround yourself with people you love, doing what you enjoy, and relishing every single moment?

Some say a leap year with that strange extra day is a curse because it is so rare. But, like everything in life, it’s all a matter of perspective.

And however you spend your day(s) is also a matter of choice.

Just remember that whatever you choose to do, do it with all your heart.

How fast is too fast?

fastTime is one thing that constantly surrounds us. We spend our entire day looking at a clock, scheduling our daily activities according to time. And we are continually thinking that it is either moving too fast or too slow. We are either complaining that we don’t have enough hours in the day to do everything we want, or moaning that time is moving too slow and we are bored. For the latter there are many solutions, as you can always find something to do if you are willing. But what about when there is not enough time? Because, honestly, how fast is moving too fast?

Is 60mph too fast? On a highway it is not, but in a residential area it is considered reckless. Is diving into a relationship head over heels from the first month going too fast? It all depends on what you feel, what you’ve been through and where you see everything going. And what about taking decisions at the spur of the moment? Sometimes, being in a hurry leads to really wrong outcomes. But other times, it may lead to the best opportunities you will ever have.

It is all a matter of perspective. Of weighing in your heart and mind the pros and cons of what you do and deciding consciously and decisively what you want to do. Nothing is too fast if you do it in full knowledge of the consequences of your actions. You might regret it later on in time, but that too is an experience. Just imagine how wonderful it would be though if a “fast” decision leads to the most amazing happening of your life. Wouldn’t that make it all worth it?

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