Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Don't Sweat the Small Stuff

So why do we allow ourselves to be affected by the actions of others? My mother is always telling me don't sweat the small stuff and just ignore them. "Sticks and stones my break my bones but words will never hurt me." Wow. What a concept. If that were only true. I can honestly say that most generally I would rather have someone break one of my bones than say something hurtful, spiteful, mean or dare I say it... even sometimes the plain old truth.

I've always heard that all we need to know in life we learned in Kindergarten. Here are the essentials from http://www.peace.ca/.

•Share everything.
•Play fair.
•Don't hit people.
•Put things back where you found them.
•Clean up your own mess.
•Don't take things that aren't yours.
•Say you're sorry when you hurt somebody.
•Wash your hands before you eat.
•Warm cookies and cold milk are good for you.
•Live a balanced life - learn some and think some and draw and paint and sing and dance and play and work every day some.
•Take a nap every afternoon.
•When you go out in the world, watch out for traffic, hold hands and stick together.
•Be aware of wonder. Remember the little seed in the Styrofoam cup: the roots go down and the plant goes up and nobody really knows how or why, but we are all like that.
•Goldfish and hamsters and white mice and even the little seed in the Styrofoam cup - they all die. So do we.
•And then remember the Dick-and-Jane books and the first word you learned - the biggest word of all - LOOK.

Everything you need to know is in there somewhere. The Golden Rule and love and basic sanitation. Ecology and politics and equality and sane living.

Ah.. wouldn't it be a better place if we all followed those rules. Especially the Golden Rule.
"Do unto others as you would have them do unto you." (Luke 6:31, NIV) Sounds alot like KARMA if you as me. I must admit, I'm not perfect.. far from it in fact; however, I try to be good, follow most of the rules of life, help my friends, family and when possible even people I don't know. Unfortunately, every once in awhile things catch up with you and you suddenly realize the golden rule, karma, good intentions, and not even a warm cookies and milk can't fix all problems.

So I guess what I am saying is yes there are going to be tough times and simple solutions are no where to be found. There will be those people who are just plain MEAN. There will be those times when what a person says or does completely affects your mood, your day or even your life to a certain extent. But maybe there truly is something to what my momma says constantly...
"Don't sweat the small stuff, Stacey." I later found out that my mom had borrowed this quote from a book series... :) The author of the Don't Sweat the Small Stuff series, Richard Carlson, claimed it's all small stuff. I don't know about that but maybe I need to read that book! Either way, everytime I call my momma in a tizzy over the latest guy who hasn't called me back, a school project crisis, money issues (which seem to happen alot when you're a poor college kid) *QUE the pity sighs* :), or when I just feel like the world is crumbling down around me, I hear "don't sweat the small stuff baby, it'll be ok". Deep down I know everything will be fine because she's right and the world won't end if my car payment is a few days late, or he doesn't call for the 3rd date, or if I couldn't get my project to print. Life WILL go on and I WILL be just fine.

Ok I'm officially rambling. My point.. Don't let people's actions or words frustrate you. I'm trying to follow this logic but it's hard!! Woo sah, grusfraba, rub the ears, WHATEVER calms you... take a deep breath, close your eyes and don't sweat the small stuff... BECAUSE IT'S ALL SMALL STUFF!

I'll leave you with a saying that I'll never forget as long as I live.. I was babysitting years ago and was all in a tizzy over who knows what but the mom, Kara Long, stopped me and said, "The people who mind don't matter and the people who matter don't mind."

Oh I love this quote. She was right, my mother was right, Mr. Carlson was right. There are not many things on this earth that can't be solved, handled, fixed or at the very least apologized for. So we all need to stop stressing, take a deep breath and enjoy life. Have a wonderful night..

Sunday, April 19, 2009

What is a smile worth?

The thing that goes the farthest
Towards making life worth while,
Which costs the least and counts the most,
Is just a pleasant smile.

The smile that bubbles from a heart
That loves its fellow men,
Will drive away the clouds of gloom
And coax the sun again,
It is full of worth, and goodness too,
With many kindness blent;
It is worth a million dollars
And it doesn't cost a cent.

There is no room for sadness

When we see a cheery smile,
It always has the same good looks,
It's never out of style.

It nerves us on to try again
When failure makes us blue,
The dimples of encouragement
Are good for me and you.

It pays a higher interest
For it is sincerely lent;
It is worth a million dollars
And doesn't cost a cent.

A smile comes very easy,

You can wrinkle up with cheer
A hundred times before you
Can squeeze out a soggy tear.

It ripples out moreover
To the heart-strings that will tug,
And always leaves an echo
That is very like a hug;
So smile away, folks understand
What by a smile is meant;
It is worth a million dollars
And doesn't cost a cent.


I love to smile. It just makes me feel great. I am a server at a local restaurant and tonight I went into work with a smile on my face. It truly is amazing what can be accomplished when you smile. People feed off your positive energy. I love being genuinely happy and sharing my smile with the world. Knowing that smile possibly could change someone else's attitude or brighten their day makes it worth while. I've definitely been called perma-smile once or twice in my life; however, I know that isn't entirely true. We all have rough days. Plain and simple. I've had a few rough days the past week but I've tried to keep a smile on my face. I adore my best friend Paige! Anytime I try to pull the less than genuine smile she'll call me out. "Don't you use that fake smile on me girl. You know it won't work." It's good to have those friends. We NEED those friends to cut threw the bull so to speak and allow us to be sad, angry, frustrated and etc.

It is a wonderful thing to be happy don't get me wrong! Realistically though no one is happy all the time. Fake smiles are appropriate every once in a while but should be used in moderation! At work, at school, when the grocery store clerk says how are you today? You know when someone asks you that rhetorical question, "How are you?", I don't know about you but sometimes I just want to say you know what! I've had a really rough day, ran out of gas, was late for work, my project isn't finished, my hair is a mess and I didn't even get a Dr. Pepper this morning.. BUT instead we put on a fake smile and say "Doing just dandy, how are you?" That is just the way we operate. Or at least I do!

The last few days I have definitely smiled and genuinely, but I have also had far more moments than usual where I was deep in thought and not smiling. I've always heard you have complete control over your attitude. Whether you have a good day or a bad day. You choose. I agree with this to an extent. Other people and their actions tend to affect my mood more than I care to admit; however, I do know that after a certain amount of time I am able to pull myself out of the funk those people put me in and choose to be happier. The trick for me is to remember something funny, look at a picture of my adorable yet obnoxious dog Hank or hear a child laugh. Those things can instantly change my outlook. I think everyone should know their triggers and use them wisely!

Tonight, I was thinking of my friend who just left and I began to feel a little frustrated. I have promised another friend I would try very hard not to focus on the negative but rather on the positive and look to the possibilities that the future might hold. What could I do to ease this frustration? I decided to go back a read some previous emails we had sent to one another and before too long I was laughing out loud recalling funny moments we shared. I was smiling again and genuinely. I don't really have a point other than a smile really is the most cost effective, heart warming, pleasurable way to make a difference in life even if it's your own life.

I hope you smiled today!

That face and this sound make me smile... :)

Friday, April 17, 2009


Blogging. It's pretty typical these days. I've read many blogs actually. I've found the good ones are just simple, this is the way life really is, and honest.

Today is Friday, April 17th. Someone I met only 12 days ago is leaving today. Logically, this should not bother me. But that would make life too simple. I met him 12 days ago and I cried today when I thought about not seeing him for over a year. This is my first post and it's not long but here I am. I thank God that I am alive and well. It is sometimes a little too easy to fall into a routine of oh poor me.. My life is so rough. I will admit that I am guilty of that.

Last night I spoke with a friend of mine who had just found out the cancer her 26 year old nephew has, had spread. The doctors give him until May. I am 28 years old, I have my health, I have my family, I am in school for what I love, I am happy. I have faith and I pray yet I find myself questioning his plan sometimes. God is good. I pray for this boy's health and his family. They will need strength for the weeks to come.

My goal for the next week is to find 5 simple things everyday to be completely thankful for.

1. I am thankful for the sunshine because I know God knew I needed to smile.

2. I am thankful for friends. Susie and I passed a funeral procession just a while ago and I pulled over to the side of the road. She had never heard of this custom. As I explained the reasons why I had pulled over I began to think about all those cars, lights on following faithfully behind thier loved one who had passed on. Car after car. When the last car passed I pulled back on the road and smiled at Susie. "That person was loved. Very loved." I thank God for my friends.

3. I a thankful for being able to drive my car to check on a friends puppy. Sounds silly but we don't think about how some people have no car, no bike, no friends to get from here to there.

4. I am thankful for being able to appreciate the sad times and I knowing I will smile again soon.

5. I am thankful for the men and women who choose to defend this country. I've never been political, nor have I really been vested emotionally in this war. I pray for my friend's safe return, along with every other soldier putting his/her life on the line so my brothers won't have to. So I can go to school and get my education, so I can enjoy a baseball game on the weekend, so I can live the sweet simple good life. Thank you to all who serve. God Bless You and Come Home Soon.