Claim Your Wisdom!

Claim your wisdom! Yes, some of us have more of it than others, but most of us want to keep learning and growing in wisdom throughout our lives. In a discussion with a few friends, Shelly said, “There are times when I feel wise and times when I don’t. The circumstances are different.” Gail surprised me by saying, “No, I …

Becoming a Valued Mother-in-law

You, too, can become a valued mother-in-law. Here are some suggestions: Be respectful.  Your daughter-in-law comes from her own background—not better or worse, just different. You have an opportunity to acknowledge and value these differences, and therefore her. New traditions and styles of family living all come into play. Recognizing the challenge this entails, one woman half-joked, “I have actually prayed that …

“A Son Is Your Son ’til He Takes a Wife”

“A son is your son ’til he takes a wife; a daughter’s your daughter for the rest of your life.” I heard my mother say this old phrase often when I was a child, but didn’t truly understand its meaning until I became a mother-in-law myself. I only have one son, so I wanted a healthy relationship with my new …

REST to Be Your Best

Rest is necessary to be our best, but it seems like everything conspires against it – regular and cell phones, email, Facebook, Snapchat, and who knows what else! I’m not even familiar with some of those. Boundaries between work and home are dissolving, too; setting them used to be more manageable. It’s all too easy now for work to impinge …

Untimely Death Can Test Our Faith

“He died this morning.” I had just sat down this morning to email my dear friend whose son entered Hospice a couple days ago, and there was the sad message. Jan (not her real name) has been through so much, she doesn’t deserve this, too. She has buried her husband, must now bury her son, has another grown child afflicted …

Shift Worry and Anxiety into Problem-solving

Worry and anxiety  sometimes seem like emotional demon twins, with anxious feelings following worrisome thoughts.  “Worry” means “to feel uneasy or anxious; torment oneself with or suffer from disturbing thoughts; fret” (Random House Webster’s College Dictionary).  In the short term, worrying may provide a temporary measure of relief.  If it continues, however, it makes things worse for you because it becomes …

Turn Guilt and Regret into Something Positive

Guilt and regret are like two flowers on a single stem—intimately related, yet each with a distinct bloom.  Regret looks backward, and you feel sorrow or remorse for something you did or didn’t do.  You made a decision, chose a course of action, and it didn’t turn out well.  “I could have handled it differently,” you think.  Regret is a …

Addiction, Anger, and Breathing

“I always hit back when I got mad. Sometimes it was words but sometimes it was physical. I got mad a lot.” This young woman in my Pathways for Change class has been “clean” for 48 days now and is beginning to get a handle on her anger. Imagine how she behaved when her child was taken away because she …

Live Beyond Your Fears – Part III

As promised, here are four more ways you can live beyond your fears: Suppress your negative self-talk. Most of us are terrific at thinking of all the reasons something will fail. That little critic in our head yaps at us constantly. Reese Witherspoon uses self-talk as a way of not letting her fears take over. In that article in Marie …

Overcoming Your Fears – II

You can either succumb to your fears and live with the consequences, or overcome them. But how? As promised last week, here are the first four of eight ways you can curtail them: Put your fear in perspective. Ask yourself: On a scale of one to ten, how intense is it? As Dr. Sam said, “I’ve failed at some pretty …