All the past, my own along with all who have ever lived, every discovery, every word written, every whisper of legacy whether good or bad converges into one purpose: To help me live now and succeed beautifully in the present, one living moment at a time. © 2007 DarEll S. Hoskisson (dsh)
Notes to Self
To beat depression symptoms: Start even if you don’t feel like it. Stop before time is up, before you want to or before you are exhausted.
Make a deal with yourself you only have to do it for five minutes. Small parts or time lengths. Starting is the hard part. Doing it actually feels better than avoiding it.
To prioritize: Remember that many things may equally or also be important. Don’t let one rob another.
To move forward: Permission includes both time and resources to make it happen or to get them. (Don’t be a wicked step-mother to yourself).
As a mother: Nice is not softening consequences. Fair is nice because it is fair for everyone.
My declaration to independence
*setting a course toward mutually rewarding human interdependence with dependence on God alone
I wrote this with a determined effort to write for my children what I thought would bring them happiness and freedom. It includes my faith. I value and respect others’ beliefs even if different from my own. I originally wrote, “we believe” but no other person has signed it or had a hand in creating it other than myself. Therefore, this is what I believe:
I believe that God made us a family.
I believe that each person in the family and ultimately in our human family is a son or daughter of God with equal, infinite worth and is worthy of love, respect, and kindness. (I would add now: but is not necessarily worthy of trust and/or proximity to me)
I believe that life is sacred. While all are of equal worth, all are not equal in ability, maturity or opportunity. Therefore, I value people for everything good that they are, all the good they have been, and for all the good they may yet become. (Also the positive contributions they made, have done and will do in the future).
I believe that righteous living honors God, our parents, our family, and our religion, and I boldly ignore those that would persuade me otherwise.
I believe that God does not give up on us or set us up to fail, and I commit to never give up on my family and to help each one succeed. I value loyalty to God, family, and country.
I believe that true happiness comes from unity with God, His laws, and with others. I believe happiness is impossible without gratitude. Therefore, I strive to enjoy, to appreciate, and to share every blessing.
I believe that peace is dependent on trusting God and loving truth. I believe that as I find joy in reality, I will demonstrate my trust in God’s will and that such faith will turn the key to miracles-discovering his will for me and unlocking great mysteries.
I believe that while others may have power to subject me physically, that no person or power can take away my personal right to choose my attitude, my values, my beliefs or my ability to pray.
I value difficult people, situations and problems as the incredible catalysts they are in my personal growth.
I value my opportunity to make a unique and positive contribution to humanity. I seek to develop my talents and abilities so that I can be a useful, wise steward. I strive to be loving and to help myself and others grow.
I value all honorable work and its force for good. I seek to value, protect, clean, repair and maintain all blessings including my body, animals and property entrusted to my care and to endeavor to teach my children to do the same. I seek to avoid waste.
I value my ability and right to make mistakes while I progress, learn self-mastery, and practice stewardship. I am glad to be human and give myself and others space to try again and again and again. I believe in Christ’s atonement for myself and others.
I value and respect the rules of our home, schools, employment and government for the clarity, order and peace they engender. I value limits on my behavior and choices insofar as they are helpful to prevent harm, chaos and conflict for all. I strive to work with others in appropriate ways to change rules that are oppressive or contrary to God’s laws.
I value the uniqueness of others and look for the good in them. I seek for harmony and synergy over being right, winning, or dominating. I strive to protect confidences, to avoid gossip, and to preserve the privacy and good name of others.
I seek to leave judgment to God, to mind my own business, and to choose what is best for myself. I allow others the same privilege as long as it does not infringe on the rights or safety of other people, animals, or property.
I believe that the person upset owns the problem to the extent that he or she has the awareness, the power, and the responsibility to discover his or her own part and to propose a mutually agreeable solution. When an offending party is unwilling or unable to admit the truth, to work towards a mutually healthy solution, or to care, I believe it is fully within the upset person’s rights to do something in order to protect themself, helpless, innocent or unsuspecting others, animals and property from willful harm. I believe it is also that person’s responsibility to seek, to ask for or to yell for help using all resources available as needed to prevent repeated victimization.
I value honesty.
I value language and strive to use its power with all my strength, talents, and resources to do good: to serve, to bless, to cheer, to build, to unite, and to get help. I recognize my opportunity and my responsibility to ask for what I need and want from others and from God.
I view my family membership as a privilege and covenant responsibility. I value the opportunity we have to spend time together, to enjoy family traditions together, to pray together, to serve each other, to work and play together and to live together because we want to.
I value creativity, individuality and fun. What needs to be done can be done in many ways with personality and style. I give myself permission to be me and also give you permission to be you.
I reserve the right to alter these core beliefs, values, and responsibilities as needed to match natural law and truth and to support and defend our privilege to seek freedom that is mutually conducive to life, love, and learning.
–DarEll S. Hoskisson
“If you rest, you rust.”–Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr
Productivity and efficiency are both such attractive topics to me. I love the idea that work can always be done better. And, I know people who are both more productive and more efficient than I am, proving it can be done.
In my notebook I have anonymous quotes that caught my eye:
“He had no wasted motion.”
“Things happened coming and going.”
In many ways I have been afraid of rest (and rust). I don’t like to waste time. Rest often seems like a waste and can look very lazy to others as well.
However, I have found in practice that always trying to do things as fast as possible is very stressful for me. I prefer to relax and enjoy what I am doing rather than race against time or a schedule. My temperament is high strung and anxious. Doing things quickly, under stress, is actually less productive for me.
For example, I stress to pack the family for the trip to Disney, we rush out the door to leave at the appointed time, and one hour into the journey I remember the tickets are home.
When overly stressed I forget things, lose or misplace important items, and sometimes lose my patience when a more paced procedure would actually save me time.
I now think that rest is important for all people. We need to punctuate times of high stress and activity with low stress and rest periods. But, especially if you are high strung like I am, the counterintuitive slow method might actually work better for you.
The navy seals have a saying that “slow is smooth, and smooth is fast.” This is a different way to look at efficiency.
But, how do you go slowly and still do things fast? I am not sure I have the answer to that question. Many tasks seem to take as much time as you give them. And, I have never been good at estimating time.
Ways that do work for me:
I set my own deadlines early with a couple of days grace period in case I get behind or life surprises me. That extra planned cushion relieves stress and allows me to focus on a task without the distraction of worry.
I plan in larger chunks of time with fewer transitions. I have never done well with a minute by minute schedule. It makes me feel like a robot with no freedom, and if anyone even speaks to me it ends up making me late like dominos all throughout the day. I want to talk to people. I want to be a person who has time for other people. I feel the world is harsh enough without all of us too busy to even be human to each other. I don’t feel like myself when a routine task seems to be more important than a precious person. This is a personal value betrayal. So, I have to have grace time within my life if at all possible.
There is an old latin phrase, “festina lente” which means to hurry slowly. I like that.
I like being the hare not the tortoise. So I need to pace my pulses and pauses in such a way that I’m not too active or too slow for too long. Like setting the wavelength of a beautiful wave, I think each pattern might be individual. My husband, for example, likes a steady pace (and he usually will beat me).
So, I’m giving myself permission to not only rest, but trust myself that I will get up and go. I do. I enjoy working hard and making a difference every day. I am thankful for that motivation.
I just can’t run off so fast that my rest is a collapse. Instead, I am going to practice hurrying slowly.
DarEll S. Hoskisson
How to reason with the unreasonable (part 1).
Have you ever seen those parents in the grocery store with the screaming child? Are you the parent of that screaming child? Maybe worse, have you ever felt like the kid in full melt-down mode in your heart– just barely holding it together in public because adults don’t behave like that–or do we?
The grocery store incidents are less common now because delivery and pick up have become some of the most useful services for parents with a less than cooperative child. But, it still happens.
One of the most infuriating things a parent can do in these situations is pacify the child with what he or she wants. You are literally conditioning him or her to act terribly to get what he or she wants. I have had a middle school student who did just that. It apparently can work for a long, long time. What should the parent do? Well, obviously stick by the “no” and keep those boundaries. But, wait……. have you ever worked with an autistic child? Sometimes the obvious solution literally doesn’t work. It doesn’t teach them anything and becomes an impossible situation for everyone.
In a completely lose/lose situation from the get go, parents can ignore it, and have the other customers irritated that the noise is not removed. They can “give in” by doing what they know will satisfy or silence the child and be not only judged by others as a terrible, wimpy parent causing all the problems with youth today, but also judging themselves and feeling like a terrible parent. Or they can go home without what they needed and give up on why they braved being in public in the first place. Being in a regularly judged and miserably unfun situation often is the price you pay for loving a child, especially a difficult or traumatized one.
If it were just toddlers who lost it and became unreasonable, we would not have these problems. The solutions, although taxing, are obvious. Pick the kid up and force them to do what is best or necessary. Take them home. Feed them; hug them; nap them, or ignore a fit at home. But life is never that simple, and we humans are not so different from our little ones.
The short answer is that you can’t. It is not possible to reason with an unreasonable person. Unreasonable people of any age are, by definition, not able to reason at that time. Emotions have apparently gotten the best of their thinking ability. We all have survival fight, flight and freeze responses that interrupt logical thinking at times.
But there is a lot of hope. As a mother, teacher and teacher’s helper, I have had a lot of experience with humans in melt-down mode including those with special needs. Knowing how to identify what will help and not giving in to fear or hopelessness can be so helpful. You don’t have to be a victim even if you do not enjoy what you must pass through while loving an unreasonable person.
The first step is to realize that you will not overcome irrational behavior with reasoning. However, you will start to handle it well by staying reasonable and calm yourself. Like putting on gloves and surveying the scene first in an emergency situation, take a deep breath and know that you can deal with this without joining this person on their emotional ride. You will be better able to help them calm down and deal with their upset if you see their struggle as theirs and stay firmly grounded.
As a young mother, I was very reactive. Every time my son threw a fit, I got very upset myself. Of course I didn’t like it. Of course my mirror neurons were firing and making me empathize and feel his upset or pain. A therapist once told me that children are very good at making you feel what they feel. I didn’t know that. He said, “think how you are feeling, that might be exactly how he was feeling.” I was feeling upset, afraid, and out of control of the situation. That matched what he was probably feeling as well.
I remember the first time I held him firmly in a rocking chair at church, meant for nursing mothers, while he kicked and screamed. He was getting too old for this behavior, and it wasn’t improving. I didn’t understand why he wasn’t growing up. I tested my ability to stay calm and rocked him while he threw a fit. I gently told him, “You can’t make me not love you.” This set me free. I saw that nothing he could do could force me to abandon him or not care. He could not upset me unless I let him. I felt this great love and freedom explode in me as I endured his nasty behavior until it ended in a crying embrace. The calm after the storm was wonderful and bonding. I was emotionally available for that because I had not become upset myself. It was wonderful.
“One can have no smaller or greater mastery than mastery of oneself.” –Leonardo da Vinci
So, I challenge you to find the power within yourself however you can to not go on that ride. Have compassion on yourself without pity. You are doing the best you can, but you are not a victim. You are choosing this. There is a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow even if in the future there will be many more storms.
It has been so long
since we spent a quiet
Just my pen
Catching the lessons
out of the sea
and tacking them
up page by page
in the sun
so I can taste them
on yet another day’s
Linking Generations–Get or give advice
I just found out about a great opportunity to get or give free advice.
Seniors can volunteer at their own convenience.
Just like asking Google, you can ask a real person in real time for their advice.
I’m so excited about this. I don’t want a whole generation of wisdom to be lost.
The problem of technology becomes a vehicle for a solution. Interestingly enough, this whole set up was made possible by a generous donation from Google.
Elder Wisdom Circle–Get or Volunteer to Give Advice
Courageous or Catastrophic?
Courageous or Catastrophic–
which will it be
to fight against this limit
thrust upon me?
Will I triumph at
or be found frozen
part way up?
I want to fight
to find out,
what would it cost?
–DarEll S. Hoskisson 1/16
That bitter sentence
a black hole
swallowing my dreams.
I dangle over the abyss.
“No more,” and
mocking my wishes,
I expected better
although I don’t know why
I feel cheated,
Am I still myself?
I hate this new
One without warning.
How can I
—DarEll S. Hoskisson 1/16
The final punctuation is up to the reader.
How can I accept this?
How can I accept this “never?”
A mother’s must see movie
Mom’s Night Out
is definitely a movie mothers with small children, especially stay at home moms, can relate to. It was so funny I was crying. It is not the kind of movie that interests the children, all but my nine year old left the room. It is also not for people who would be offended by Christian values since it appears to be a Christian film. I super, super loved it. It is a very good reminder of how and why we mothers shouldn’t and can’t lose perspective or our minds. 🙂 It is very encouraging. Happy Mothering! I’d love to buy a copy for all my sisters.