Saturday, February 13, 2021

Introducing "Affirmators"

First, let me just say... I'm back. It's been months since I have felt like posting anything to my blog, but that changes now. And I'll start with a selfie I took yesterday. This is me, nearly a year into pandemic hibernation. The hair and the beard grow a little longer, but then Ric gives me a haircut, I shave, and I look cleaned up again.

In other news, I'm spending several weeks off of Facebook. I am isolating a bit from social media and working on a few personal things, instead. I'm puttering around on Twitter a bit and dusting off this blog, but FB is on hold until Spring, at least.

I've been trying to focus on my own emotional and mental well-being. Dealing with a global pandemic in 2020 was tough on all of us, of course. On top of that, I went through an ugly personal  situation that resulted in a painful, permanent, but necessary separation from a family member. And also like many of us, I spent time soul-searching and made the decision to distance myself from many people who have demonstrated that they have very different priorities regarding political, social, and cultural issues. They likely feel the same about the positions I take, but candidly, that isn't my concern, anymore. I wish them good lives, but I no longer wish to be in them. It's better for all of us, I'm sure.

So, all of that said, it's been a tough year with new challenges. Add to that the unresolved issues of the past that I seem to routinely drag back out into the light, and clearly, I need to get my shit together once and for all.

And that brings me to the "Affirmators." They are described by their creator like this:

Even pessimists like a little positivity, so comedian Suzi Barrett created these inspirational-but-not-cheesy affirmation cards. Providing the fun of a horoscope with a little less woo-woo, and full of positive affirmations, this whimsical box will help you help yourself, no shamanistic consult required!

Here's my plan. I am not going to preview any of the cards. Instead, each Saturday, I'll select another one, read the message, and spend the next week trying to incorporate whatever positive lesson there is into my day-to-day living.

There are fifty cards, so I can do this for almost a year. That sort of consistent positive thinking has to have a good influence, right? I'll find out.

So, this is a little weird right out of the gate. The instructions with the deck suggest shuffling them without looking at the front of any of them, and then selecting one that feels like the message I need right now.

I did.

And I got a card that feels tailor-made for me in this very moment.

Week 01: Don't Take It Personally

This one is pressing all the buttons, mostly because I am currently putting distance between myself and many of my Marine Corps brothers. We were friends thirty years ago and have stayed connected since, but truthfully, many of us have grown apart and developed very different views on the world. Seeing this card - with the camouflage backpack - feels like it's speaking directly to those military connections.

So, this week, I'll keep this card front and center at my desk and put some real thought into the message. And if someone is less than kind to me, I'll try to remember that it's all about them and what is happening in their life. It's only about me if I let it be. Instead, I need to remember that they are free to say whatever they want and I am equally as free to not bother listening.

Let's see what kind of impact a full week can have when I keep repeating,"if you don't enjoy the message or the messenger, feel free to disengage."  

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