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Archive for the category “love”

No gifts needed

No gifts needed 

Photo credit: Pablo by Buffer

I really need no gifts on Father’s Day. Being a father is already the greatest gift afforded to me. I don’t even know where to begin describing how much of a blessing it has been to have two healthy kids in our lives. My father lost his dad in WWII; he did not have such a swell childhood. I lost my dad about 3 decades ago when he left us on not so nice terms. That is why I wanted to make whatever sacrifice it would take to make the effort being present in the life of our two kids. You will hear me often proclaim that you will be given so much more if you are willing to give without expecting anything in return. When I reflect upon the last 18 years I can still count the few times that we were not together. Oh sure, we spent time apart; we have a deeper bond and “together” applies to physically and spiritually being with each other.

We laugh, cry, talk, argue, vacation, suffer, enjoy, swim, bike, camp, run, hike, drive, go to school, learn German and Spanish, travel, pray, get hurt, love, geo-cache, read, puzzle, craft, do nerdy stuff, and so many more. Good, bad, and ugly alike, I would not want to miss a minute of it. Being a dad has been the greatest gift in my life and no tool or other trinket could ever make up for it.

I say this as 2017 marks the next big change: Letting go. Our daughter will leave for college soon and she will be the first of two spreading her wings. Thankfully we are close no matter how far we are apart. Still, I will surely need a bit of time getting used to not having her close with us. Even my son is already spending a lot of time on his own. I am looking forward to what both will do – I am blessed beyond measure.

Happy Father’s Day! Here is a fabulous video for the occasion (click here for watching the video).


1 easy step away going from hug to hope

1 easy step away going from hug to hope 

While in Manhattan NYC today we made a quick stop at the Starbucks near Union Square and one of the baristas took my breath away. She saw my daughter and I waiting in line for our food and drinks and I gave us a big smile. Then she gave us a huge hug (here is another worthy read about hugs). It was totally unprovoked, genuine and came from the bottom of her heart. I was so moved by this that my eyes started to leak a little. Here I was totally consumed with the many – too many – tasks and things to do and check off the list. Work, family, and so many other extra curricular activities had put me under a lot of stress. Success draws more and more attention and activities for sure. I just did not feel good about it at all today. And yet, this one hug pumped huge amounts of hope and energy back into me.

Despite all the political hubbub and also the many nasty things that happen every day we are a good People – there is hope and all we all need to do is showing a little of that to our fellow woman and man. Pay it forward and give someone a good old-fashioned hug. It can make a huge difference in someone’s life – it did for me. From bad day to hope that is all that it may take.


One of the worst relationship busters – and it is not hatred

One of the worst relationship busters – and it is not hatred 

Photo credit: www.pablo.buffer.com

You would think that the opposite of love is hatred. That is not it. It is contempt and indifference. Think about how this applies in your romantic and also work related relationships. The reason why contempt is such an effective relationship buster is because it is a slow and deceptive process that is barely recognizable. Along the way you tolerate the little things that we may not like about the partner. When then one partner tries changing the other this can easily derail the mutual respect. You can easily get wrapped up in starting to pursue different interests spending less time together. Our newest electronic devices (and thus vices) may additionally tax the attention span we may have for each other. Finally we may start criticizing the partner more often and at greater intensity. Contempt takes over our thinking process. After a while we may start feeling more and more disconnected and indifference and emotional distance set it.

Should this happen to you there is a key question to ask when a heated discussion ensues and you are no longer sure if your relationship is salvageable: “Now that our journey seems to be coming to an end, can you please tell me at what time I veered off course and what it was that I should have done differently.” When you listen (that means you need to listen to understand and not to respond) think on your feet and listen for new and old revelations that you could change or do immediately. Whatever your partner tells you is the roadmap of your possible path together again. Then share your side of the story. You need to just make sure that that is what you wanted in the first place. Also, keep focusing on why you fell in love with your significant other in the first place. In nine of ten cases that person is still there.


5 farewell survival methods

5 farewell survival methods 16708522_1875406716036945_6821445900450343454_n

Photo credit: Kathryn Weiser

Visiting friends and family whom you may not have seen for quite a while is great. Best is when you get some time to spend with them, but one thing waits for you at the end: The farewell. Visiting my sister recently – with whom I am really close to – let me ponder this dilemma while saying yet another tearful “Auf Wiedersehen”. Much like anything in our human existence, there are a few mental approaches to parting ways with people who mean a lot to you.

  • The Band-Aid approach: What I mean by this is to approach it like ripping a Band-Aid off your skin so it hurts only once (I might add that I have always found this to hurt more, but it does not take as long). Keep it short and sweet and do not extend the time you have together too long. A quick heartfelt hug and off you go.
  • Extend your togetherness to the fullest: Drawing it out some more and perhaps having a meal together or hanging out at the coffee bar at the airport for a little while longer can sometimes get you slowly prepared for what is to come. This may allow for you exchanging some more ideas and memories and this may let you both feel a little better as you leave.
  • Follow up: Good news is that this is the 21st Century and we can follow up with our loved ones as soon as you leave. Whether you are driving or flying, you can be connected 24/7 and thus tell your loved ones where you are and that you are ok and thinking of them.
  • Staying in touch: This has never been this easy staying in touch. You name it and we have it. Just think of our smart phones, Skype, NetMeeting, Chats, Texting, Instagram, Tweets, Facebook, Glympse (this is a really great App), WhatsApp, Snapchat, etc. Physically you may be separated, but once you are tricked out with all possible electronic means you are never really that far apart. A really nice old fashioned caveat to this is leaving a card or note behind that you hid somewhere for your close ones to find when you are gone. It is my favorite.
  • Coming back: One thing to always keep thinking about is the fact that you could and should always come back to see your folks again sometime soon. What is nicer than to come back and spend more time face-to-face together?

No matter how sad you may be right now if you need to say goodbye to someone soon. Please rest assure that there are some ways of coping with this situation and I am hoping the 5 small ideas above may be of some help to you. Good luck and perhaps you have a few ideas of your own that you may want to share with the other followers?


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