advice from a friend

I am a loyal reader of the blog, knee deep in weeds by Cathy Sly. Cathy lives in Western Washington with her husband and an adorable beagle named Basil. She shares her heart with great sincerity and her art with great generosity. I learn from every post she shares. As in all friendships, we bring out the best in each other.

In Cathy's recent post, she gave herself some advice. Her words were eloquent and heartfelt and genuine, and her wise words seemed like good advice for me as well. I wrote to ask if I might share her words here, thinking perhaps they might mean something to my readers and my friends as well.

Without necessarily setting out to do so, I believe Cathy has crafted a manifesto. I'm inspired because what I read in every line is intention and integrity and these are my core values. Women with cameras are a powerful force.


Thank you, Cathy, for these words of advice.

Don't worry so much, things have a way of working out if you just give it a little time. Pause throughout the day and connect with yourself. Try to label your feelings, something more than good or bad, get down to the nitty gritty and remember you often feel more than one feeling at a time. Don't talk about others, or make assumptions based on your mind's imagination. And above all, mind your own business. Listen to your intuition, that is the only way to build back that trust you lost way back when. Understand that the dark times are going to come, but also know that light will return, so don't panic. Remember the stronger your core; your soul, your values, your beliefs, and the better you know yourself, the faster you will come out of that dark space.  
Remember every moment is new, even if it is a repeat of yesterday or last year so pay attention and give it the respect it deserves. Don't worry too much about what others think (here is where that pause could come inhandy). Try not to judge others or yourself and if you do, step back and ask yourself why you feel the need to do so. Eat when you are hungry and think about what it is that will satisfy that hunger and slow down!  And remember, it is okay to treat yourself once in a while. Go to the gym because those people make you happy and you always walk out feeling so much better. Take time every day to meditate, even if it is only for a few minutes. You can do a pretty good job of it while walking the dog if you are so inclined.
Don't play games with people. And remember everyone is not seeking your advice or your opinion, especially your adult children. Ask questions and really listen, because everyone needs to be heard. And if someone asks something of you, remember it is okay to say I don't know, or let me think about it, before you answer.  When you do respond, speak from your heart with kindness. Talk about love often and give love both to others and yourself. Apologize when you need to. Remember that if you enjoy doing something then it is not a waste of time no matter what others think or say. And also remember that more is not always better. Pick a few amazing things to fill your life with and give them your full attention. For you, trying to do too many awesome things at the same time only leads to you just sitting there, overwhelmed and not doing anything. If something doesn't feel right move on. Limit your exposure to the news, social media and other people's perfect lives. Be grateful and seek joy, every single day.