As a very important source of strength and security, cherish public credit. One method of preserving it is to use it as sparingly as possible, avoiding occasions of expense by cultivating peace, but remembering also that timely disbursements to prepare for danger frequently prevent much greater disbursements to repel it, avoiding likewise the accumulation of debt, not only by shunning occasions of expense, but by vigorous exertion in time of peace to discharge the debts which unavoidable wars may have occasioned, not ungenerously throwing upon posterity the burden which we ourselves ought to bear. The execution of these maxims belongs to your representatives, but it is necessary that public opinion should co-operate. To facilitate to them the performance of their duty, it is essential that you should practically bear in mind that towards the payment of debts there must be revenue; that to have revenue there must be taxes; that no taxes can be devised which are not more or less inconvenient and unpleasant; that the intrinsic embarrassment, inseparable from the selection of the proper objects (which is always a choice of difficulties), ought to be a decisive motive for a candid construction of the conduct of the government in making it, and for a spirit of acquiescence in the measures for obtaining revenue, which the public exigencies may at any time dictate.
“Criticism is futile because it puts a person on the defensive and usually makes him strive to justify himself. Criticism is dangerous, because it wounds a person’s precious pride, hurts his sense of importance, and arouses resentment.”
Criticism is hard. Even the most gently worded criticism can still sting. As Mr. Carnegie stated, it brings up many painful emotions. People tend to strike back when confronted with criticism.
Criticism should offer a way for the person to improve, without breaking them down. It needs to take into account that it may hurt
It’s a lot easier for an organization to adopt new words than it is to actually change anything.
Real change is uncomfortable. If it’s not feeling that way, you’ve probably just adopted new words.
Something has been in the back of my mind for a while. It’s about the words that people say. Words are funny things – they have different meanings depending on tone, different meanings depending on who says them, different meanings based on where the recipient is in their head. What sounds perfectly reasonable to one person is completely irrational to someone else. Is that right? Not necessarily. A speaker can’t be responsible for controlling where the recipient is in their head, but a speaker can be cognizant of the words they use and how they could be received. On the flip side, a recipient may need to consider the underlying message or thought behind the words. It’s up to both parties to be aware.
Words spoken in anger or disappointment can hurt – even if that’s not the intention. Words spoken with the wrong tone can hurt. Even words said sweetly can hurt if the words themselves aren’t right. Words spoken with contradictory actions leave the recipient wondering what is true. Actions speak louder than words, but actions are diminished if the words don’t match.
One of the things I am working on this year is patience. For those who know me, patience is not one of my strengths. I tend to want things done immediately and to the highest standard possible. This is difficult for me to convey without being frustrated when things don’t happen the way I want them to. Working on this is going to be a struggle – I know this. Add in a busy schedule, two little kids with busy schedules, as well as the number of distractions that are in today’s society and you can see that being patient is larger than just taking the time to breathe or count to 10 or relax.
I am trying to be patient with my words and actions. I am trying to consider the impact that my word choice and tone has on others. I’m trying to pause in important conversations to seek the truly right word or phrase. Too often, I speak before I think – or rather, I’ve thought, but my brain has moved on to the next thing and my mouth is trying to catch up.
I’m also trying to make sure my words and actions match. I don’t want to send contradictory messages. If I say I am going to do something, I’m going to do it. I don’t want to over-commit, but I want to make sure I follow through on those things I have agreed to.
It’s daunting to think that the words you speak (or write) can influence more than just yourself. Those words travel throughout time and space to impact those around you or those you don’t even know. Take the time to consider your words. I know I will.
I apologize, I haven’t been writing much at this blog lately. Things have been pretty busy and my focus has been elsewhere. I’m hoping to get back to a more consistent blogging schedule soon.
In today’s Gospel, Luke says in 21:34-36
“Beware that your hearts do not become drowsy from carousing and drunkenness and the anxieties of daily life, and that day catch you by surprise like a trap. For that day will assault everyone who lives on the face of the earth. Be vigilant at all times and pray that you have the strength to escape the tribulations that are imminent and to stand before the Son of Man.”
I heard this at Mass this morning and it just struck me. How often am I too distracted by what is going on at home or work or society in general to pay attention to the spiritual? I get distracted by Facebook, Twitter, running, house chores, diet, reading, all sorts of things and I don’t take the time to quietly meditate on my relationship with God.
I think it becomes even more apparent at Christmas. Father Jason said this morning (paraphrasing) that in the “world” it’s already Christmas, and that by the time December 25th gets here, everyone’s tired of it. But for Christians who have been paying attention to the meaning behind the season, December 25th is the celebration – we are in a period of waiting. Waiting for the birth of Christ the King. We need to be vigilant for ways to watch for Christ’s blessing during this busy time.
This year, my husband and I are trying to get all of our gift-buying done early. Typically, we don’t start decorating for Christmas until after my birthday and I’d like to have all of our purchases done by then as well this year. I really want to focus my girls on the true meaning of Christmas and taking the time to sit with them and talk about Advent. They see the Advent wreath at Mass, but they don’t know the meanings. I will confess – I don’t truly know them as well. I want to make this season special for them and start creating traditions – now that they are old enough to understand.
I need to be vigilant. I need to watch for those gifts that are presented to me as I go throughout my day. I need to make sure I spend time communing with God, even beyond this season. I need to make sure my heart does not become overwhelmed by daily life.
How will you be vigilant this Advent?
- The Advent Candle (faithfulprovisions.com)
The story (by Mickie Mathis) is about Boo and his family, who live in a haunted house. Boo is very excited because he gets to go haunting like the big ghosts. As you can imagine, he is still wound up when they come home at the end of their night of haunting. Mama Ghost has to get Boo to go to sleep. She does that by getting him to close his eyes and listen to the world around him – the house, the animals, the weather outside. Soon, he has fallen sound asleep.
My child liked the story. She liked looking at the illustrations and pointing things out (like monsters). It was a nice “quiet” book for us to read before she went to bed, so I appreciate that as well.
This book would be a great Halloween gift for a young child (to be read to), or a young reader (maybe 1st or 2nd grade).
I received this book from the publisher through Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.
I’m a new runner. I only started running about 6 months ago. Since then, I have completed a couple of local 5ks, several virtual races, and gradually increased my mileage. I’m not the fastest runner, but I try hard and I am learning.
The last 2 months have been difficult for training. Between the heat, other activities, and several injuries/sore muscles, sometimes it’s hard to get the mileage that I want to get. Especially since I am training for a half-marathon in October.
My biggest problem is pushing too hard, too fast. It usually means I will end up hurting something. That usually means I am out of running commission for a while. For me, that’s hard. I want to do my best and I want to be out running. I can’t improve if I can’t get out there, right?
The last week or so, I have been battling a knee injury. I’ve done something to it…probably a strain. I figured something was wrong when I tried to do an 8 mile training run on Sunday and only made it ¾ of a mile…and even that was a struggle.
So why is this a problem? Some people may say: “Just stop running.” “Just ride a bike.” “Just don’t do it.” The issue is that I need to keep running. I can’t do my half-marathon on a bike. I can’t continue to improve my lifestyle without activity like this. Running has helped me in so many ways. It’s improved my health, it’s helped me lose weight, it’s made me stronger.
The result of my injury is that tomorrow, I will have my first DID NOT START (DNS) for a race I signed up for. It makes me sad to do this. Until this morning, I thought I was at least going to see if they would let me switch from the 10k to the 5k, because I can at least walk the 5k (they don’t allow walkers in the 10k). But the knee is just not cooperating and it’s telling me I need to rest it some more. I wanted to do this race – it was going to be my longest race to date and I wanted to put some more points on the board for the local Grand Prix competition (I’m currently in 4th place for my age group – yippee!).
While this is upsetting, I just have to keep my half-marathon in the back of my mind. That race needs to be my priority. It’s important to me. It’s with my niece, and it will be our first half. Vacation time has been requested and approved; the race has been paid for; plans are set. The only thing that will keep me from running that race is if a doctor says I can’t. Otherwise, I will be at that starting line with her on October 6th, race bib on, and ready to go. I don’t care if I run/walk, run, or crawl, but I will be in that race.
I am determined.
Louise Yates (author of Dog Loves Books) has written and illustrated a fast-moving story about a dog who receives a sketchbook from his Aunt Dora. Dog loves books, but he is initially baffled by a book without pictures and words. Then he figures it out.
Bit by bit, Dog brings characters to life, and sets everyone on an adventure that is stopped by a vicious monster. Luckily, Dog has an escape route for himself, and a way to make his friends safe.
My daughter really liked this story. She thought it was funny that Dog liked to draw, and especially liked the different characters that came up in the story. My daughters are always coloring and such, so for her it was not a stretch to imagine that the characters being drawn were actually coming to life.
The story and drawings are perfect for my 4-year old. The illustrations weren’t overly detailed, but it brought home the point that Dog was drawing the pictures. I thought the story was paced just right. My daughter was caught up in the action and was sad when the story ended.
This would be a great book for a young child (to be read to) or for an older child to read on their own.
I received this book from the publisher through Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.