13 Things Mentally Strong People Don’t Do

13 Things Mentally Strong People Don’t Do

13 Things Mentally Strong People Don’t Do

Oust the weak links in your thinking and behavior patterns.

For more than a decade in my work as a psychotherapist, I helped clients identify their existing talents, skills and support systems. Then we’d figure out how to address their struggles by expanding on their existing strengths. For much of my career, I felt like this positive plan of attack was an effective way to help people overcome adversity.

But when I experienced tragedy firsthand, I began to rethink this optimistic method. In 2003 my mother died unexpectedly. Then two days before the third anniversary of her death, my 26-year-old husband suffered a fatal heart attack. Seven years later, I lost my father-in-law.

Throughout my grief, I realized that focusing on my strengths—and ignoring my weaknesses—had serious limitations. If I wanted to emerge from that painful period stronger than before, I needed to pay close attention to the bad habits that held me back. Letting myself feel like a victim, complaining about my circumstances and distracting myself from the pain might help me feel better in the short term but would only cause more problems over the long term.

My hardships taught me that it only takes one or two bad habits—no matter how minor they might seem—to stall progress.

Reaching your greatest potential doesn’t require you to work harder by adding desirable habits to your already busy life. Instead you can work smarter by eliminating the routines that erode effectiveness and siphon off mental strength. Here are the 13 things mentally strong people don’t do:

1. Waste time feeling sorry for themselves.

It’s futile to wallow in your problems, exaggerate your misfortune and keep score of how many hardships you’ve endured. Whether you’re struggling to pay your bills or experiencing a serious health problem, throwing a pity party only makes things worse. Self-pity keeps you focused on the problem and prevents you from developing a solution.

Hardship and sorrow are inevitable, but feeling sorry for yourself is a choice. Even when you can’t solve the problem, you can choose to control your attitude. Find three things to be grateful for every day to keep self-pity at bay.

2. Give away their power.

You can’t feel like a victim and be mentally strong; that’s impossible. If your thoughts send you into victim mode—My sister-in-law drives me crazy or My boss makes me feel bad about myself—you give others power over you. No one has power over the way you think, feel or behave.

Changing your daily vocabulary is one way to recognize that the choices you make are yours. Rather than saying, “I have to work late today,” edit that sentiment to “I’m choosing to stay late.” There may be consequences if you don’t work late, but it’s still a choice. Empowering yourself is an essential component to creating the kind of life you want.

3. Shy away from change.

If you worry that change will make things worse, you’ll stay stuck in your old ways. The world is changing, and your success depends on your ability to adapt. The more you practice tolerating distress from various sources—perhaps taking a new job or leaving an unhealthy relationship—the more confident you’ll become in your ability to adapt and create positive change in yourself.

4. Squander energy on things they can’t control.

Complaining, worrying and wishful thinking don’t solve problems; they only waste your energy. But if you invest that same energy in the things you can control, you’ll be much better prepared for whatever life throws your way.

Pay attention to the times when you’re tempted to worry about things you can’t control—such as the choices other people make or how your competitor behaves—and devote that energy to something more productive, such as finishing a project at work or home or helping a friend with hers. Accept situations that are beyond your control and focus on influencing, rather than controlling, people around you.

5. Worry about pleasing everyone.

Whether you’re nervous that your father-in-law will criticize your latest endeavor or you attend an event you’d rather skip to avoid a guilt trip from your mother, trying to make other people happy drains your mental strength and causes you to lose sight of your goals.

Making choices that disappoint or upset others takes courage, but living an authentic life requires you to act according to your values. Write down your top five values and focus your energy on staying true to them, even when your choices aren’t met with favor. 

6. Fear taking risks.

If something seems scary, you might not take the risk, even a small one. On the contrary, if you’re excited about a new opportunity, you may overlook a giant risk and forge ahead. Emotions cloud your judgment and interfere with your ability to accurately calculate risk. You can’t become extraordinary without taking chances, but a successful outcome depends on your ability to take the right risks. Acknowledge how you’re feeling about a certain risk and recognize how your emotions influence your thoughts. Create a list of the pros and cons of taking the risk to help you make a decision based on a balance of emotion and logic.

7. Dwell on the past.

While learning from the past helps you build mental strength, ruminating is harmful. Constantly questioning your past choices or romanticizing about the good ol’ days keeps you from both enjoying the present and making the future as good as it can be.

Make peace with the past. Sometimes doing so will involve forgiving someone who hurt you, and other times, moving forward means letting go of regret. Rather than reliving your past, work through the painful emotions that keep you stuck.

8. Repeat their mistakes.

Whether you felt embarrassed when you gave the wrong answer in class or you were scolded for messing up, you may have learned from a young age that mistakes are bad. So you may hide or excuse your mistakes to bury the shame associated with them, and doing so will prevent you from learning from them.

Whether you gained back the weight that you worked hard to lose or you forgot an important deadline, view each misstep as an opportunity for growth. Set aside your pride and humbly evaluate why you goofed up. Use that knowledge to move forward better than before.

9. Resent other people’s successes.

Watching a co-worker receive a promotion, hearing a friend talk about her latest achievement or seeing a family member buy a car you can’t afford can stir up feelings of envy. But jealousy shifts the focus from your efforts and interferes with your ability to reach your goals.

Write down your definition of success. When you’re secure in that definition, you’ll stop resenting others for attaining their goals, and you’ll stay committed to reaching yours. Recognize that when other people reach their goals, their accomplishments don’t minimize your achievements.

10. Give up after their first failure.

Some people avoid failure at all costs because it unravels their sense of self-worth. Not trying at all or giving up after your first attempt will prevent you from reaching your potential. Almost every story about a wildly successful person starts with tales of repeated failure (consider Thomas Edison’s thousands of failures before he invented a viable lightbulb, for instance).

Face your fear of defeat head-on by stretching yourself to your limits. Even when you feel embarrassed, rejected or ashamed, hold your head high and refuse to let lack of success define you as a person. Focus on improving your skills and be willing to try again after you fail.

11. Fear “alone time.”

Solitude can sometimes feel unproductive; for some people, the thought of being alone with their thoughts is downright scary. Most people avoid silence by filling their days with a flurry of activity and background noise.

Alone time, however, is an essential component to building mental strength. Carve out at least 10 minutes each day to gather your thoughts without the distractions of the world. Use the time to reflect on your progress and create goals for the future.

12. Feel the world owes them something.

We like to think that if we put in enough hard work or tough it out through bad times, then we deserve success. But waiting for the world to give you what you think you’re owed isn’t a productive life strategy.

Take notice of times when you feel as though you deserve something better. Intentionally focus on all that you have to give rather than what you think you deserve. Regardless of whether you think you’ve been dealt a fair hand in life, you have gifts to share with others

13. Expect immediate results.

Self-growth develops slowly. Whether you’re trying to shed your procrastination tendencies or improve your marriage, expecting instant results will lead to disappointment. Think of your efforts as a marathon, not a sprint. View bumps in the road as minor setbacks rather than as total roadblocks.

You’ll need all the mental strength you can muster at some point in your life, whether it’s the loss of a loved one, a financial hardship or a major health problem. Mental strength will give you the resilience to push through the challenges.

And the great news is that everyone can strengthen his or her mental muscle. Practice being your own mental strength coach. Pay attention to areas in which you’re doing well and figure out where you need improvement. Create opportunities for growth and then challenge yourself to become a little better today than you were yesterday.

http://www.SandraBravo.TV

 

Written By

July 12, 2017
To be a Winner … Be unselfish

To be a Winner … Be unselfish

To be a Winner … Be unselfish

Steve Kerr, head coach of the Golden State Warriors was asked the reason his team defeated LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers for the 2017 NBA championship.  He answered in one word:  “Unselfish.”

The NBA Finals were a feast for basketball junkies like me.  The excitement extended far beyond the games themselves.  The players put on an exhibition that demonstrated the importance of sharing the glory.

When you have a championship-caliber team and then you add another superstar like Kevin Durant to the mix, you can either implode or you can win a championship.   With all those NBA All-Stars on the court, there aren’t enough basketballs to go around.

There are, if you are the Warriors.  The team embraced their star newcomer with no jealousy.  The team’s sole goal was to win a championship, which they did by sharing the ball.

It doesn’t hurt to have a winner like Steve Kerr leading you.  Kerr took his college basketball team, the University of Arizona, to the NCAA Final Four. He won five NBA championships as a player, three with Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls and two with the San Antonio Spurs.  Now he’s won two more as a coach.  

As President Harry Truman said so well:  “It is amazing what you can accomplish if you don’t care who gets the credit.”

Being unselfish is also important in business.  It’s one of the cornerstones of leadership – the willingness to sacrifice for others.  It’s putting the interests of the team ahead of your own personal needs and desires.  Whether your business is basketball or ball bearings, the organizations that want to stay in business recognize that everyone has a role to play.

Steve Kerr is a master of this.  He stood in the background as his players celebrated.  He put his team first.

How many of us have worked with people who do a little of the work and want all the credit?  But then when there is a problem, they are the first to blame others.  

Being unselfish runs counter to what many people think is important to getting ahead in business.  You want to be noticed for your successes, even if others contributed to them.  You don’t want your superstar image to be diminished by sharing the glory.  But that is not a winning strategy.  We much prefer to work with and for team players.

Charles William Eliot, who served as Harvard University President for 40 years, offered this wisdom:  “Be unselfish.  That is the first and final commandment for those who would be useful and happy in their usefulness.  If you think of yourself only, you cannot develop because you are choking the source of development, which is spiritual expansion through thought for others.” 

If you want to follow his advice, consider these traits of truly unselfish people: 

They share the credit.  

In giving others recognition, they acknowledge the contributions made by co-workers and set the stage for future cooperation.  They realize that setting a good example encourages others to appreciate the importance of teamwork. 

They truly help others. 

 When there are problems or setbacks, they look for ways to solve them rather than assessing blame.  They are willing to share knowledge that will be useful down the road.

They have others’ best interests in mind.  

They see the benefits of making everyone on their team successful, and then do their best to help their co-workers improve.  They understand that everyone is trying to get ahead and support their efforts.

They are trusted. 

 They keep their word.  They do what they say they will do.  People working with them know they can depend that they won’t get thrown under the bus when a project goes awry.  They know they will be treated respectfully even when they disagree.  They are resilient. They can accept setbacks gracefully, and understand that sometimes the biggest failures can lead to the biggest successes.  They don’t point fingers, instead pointing their colleagues back on track.

They welcome ideas and input from others.  

They realize that there is often more than one way to solve a problem, and that they do not always have all the answers.  They aren’t threatened by other viewpoints.  They keep their focus on achieving the goal, not being right all the time. 

Give these ideas some serious thought – and you will be a champion in your own right.

May your Wisdom Guide You,

Until the next one,

5 Ways to Turn Mental Challenges Into Unstoppable Strengths

5 Ways to Turn Mental Challenges Into Unstoppable Strengths

They exist for weeks during business crunch time on a diet of vending machine snacks and caffeine. They forgo sleep, food and personal hygiene in favor of a company goal. They maintain single-minded focus and spend hours discussing the finer points of a red border versus blue border on the home page. They love to work, and it shows, particularly in the sacrifices they’re willing to make to ensure their ventures succeed.

What some people might call “obsessive” looks a lot like entrepreneurial success. And, indeed, there’s a thin line between healthy and overboard.

If you’ve ever thought (or been told) that your commitment to your work was a bit—ahem—outside the norm, you’re not alone.

According to a paper published by Michael A. Freeman, M.D., and his fellow researchers at the University of California, San Francisco and Stanford University, almost three out of four entrepreneurs report suffering from some form of mental health concern, much higher than the national average.

Just as many successful businesspeople—Daymond John, Sir Richard Branson, Anita Roddick, for example—credit their dyslexia with helping them succeed in business, many entrepreneurs likewise say that their tendencies toward OCD, ADD, depression and other mental health issues have helped, not harmed, their businesses.

Alex Charfen, CEO of CHARFEN, a training and business consulting organization for entrepreneurs and small businesses, prefers to see the elements that make entrepreneurs unique as positives, when they’re used to their best and highest purpose. “Any one of the attributes that make us magical can also be what holds us back,” he explains. “Every successful entrepreneur has that period of their lives they’d rather not tell their kids about.” But once you channel those tendencies, it can be like lighting the fuse on a rocket.

If you are someone who trends toward going a bit overboard, how can you make sure you’re taking care of yourself, your business and your relationships without sacrificing that “entrepreneurial edge” or becoming a cautionary tale? Here are five tips.

1. Stop feeling like there’s something wrong with you.

Within the entrepreneurial world, those dealing with issues, such as depression, ADD or OCD are the rule, rather than the exception. “I have seen this over and over again in my millionaires,” says author and coach Jaime Masters, who has interviewed more than 350 millionaires for her Eventual Millionaire podcast.

“I was very surprised in the interviews I’ve done how many said they have dyslexia, how many said they have ADD,” she says. It is more common than not at the higher levels of the business world—and you can use these tendencies to your advantage.

2. Take care of your basic needs.

All entrepreneurs need to watch their health, but it’s even more critical for those who might tend toward neglecting their nutrition, sleep and other basics in favor of a 100-hour workweek. Charfen encourages his clients to move regularly, hydrate sufficiently, meditate consistently and eat well, all in an effort to combat the stress they’re dealing with from building, running and growing a business.

3. Create an early warning system.

If you’re prone to the highest of highs and lowest of lows, know your cycles and triggers. Seek help when you need it. Maybe you know you’re more susceptible to depression in the dark winter months, or that you experience an energy crash after a period of sustained effort and long work hours. Be ready with your remedies—self-care, therapy, vacation, sleep, etc.—when those downtimes come.

4. Keep it simple.

Jokes about “entrepreneurial ADD” abound for good reason. Masters says, “Because we’re so creative, it can feel a little jagged, like our brain is running us instead of us running our brain.” One solution: Keep as many elements of your life as simple as possible so you can focus on the areas that really need it or will benefit from your attention and creativity (Steve Jobs’ daily uniform of jeans, sneakers and black turtlenecks, for example). “Far too many entrepreneurs try to overcomplicate things,” Charfen adds.

5. Outsource your weak spots.

Many high performers are more big-picture visionaries than detail-oriented sticklers. Couple that with an entrepreneurial ADD, and you might struggle with starting new things before finishing old things. Don’t try to tame yourself, though. Instead, Masters suggests hiring for the skills you lack. Find someone to take care of the details so you can stay in your center of genius. “Focus on your strengths,” she advises.

In sum, work with your natural flow and tendencies rather than against them. Not everyone will understand why you stay up until 5 a.m. and then sleep until 3 p.m.—and they don’t need to. Your uniqueness is what will bring you to the top—and that’s when the naysayers will back down. Know yourself, know your goal and do what it takes to keep yourself moving in the right direction.

They exist for weeks during business crunch time on a diet of vending machine snacks and caffeine. They forgo sleep, food and personal hygiene in favor of a company goal. They maintain single-minded focus and spend hours discussing the finer points of a red border versus blue border on the home page. They love to work, and it shows, particularly in the sacrifices they’re willing to make to ensure their ventures succeed. What some people might call “obsessive” looks a lot like entrepreneurial success. And, indeed, there’s a thin line between healthy and overboard. If you’ve ever thought (or been told) that your commitment to your work was a bit—ahem—outside the norm, you’re not alone. According to a paper published by Michael A. Freeman, M.D., and his fellow researchers at the University of California, San Francisco and Stanford University, almost three out of four entrepreneurs report suffering from some form of mental health concern, much higher than the national average. Just as many successful businesspeople—Daymond John, Sir Richard Branson, Anita Roddick, for example—credit their dyslexia with helping them succeed in business, many entrepreneurs likewise say that their tendencies toward OCD, ADD, depression and other mental health issues have helped, not harmed, their businesses. Related: How to Turn Your Weaknesses Into Strengths Alex Charfen, CEO of CHARFEN, a training and business consulting organization for entrepreneurs and small businesses, prefers to see the elements that make entrepreneurs unique as positives, when they’re used to their best and highest purpose. “Any one of the attributes that make us magical can also be what holds us back,” he explains. “Every successful entrepreneur has that period of their lives they’d rather not tell their kids about.” But once you channel those tendencies, it can be like lighting the fuse on a rocket. If you are someone who trends toward going a bit overboard, how can you make sure you’re taking care of yourself, your business and your relationships without sacrificing that “entrepreneurial edge” or becoming a cautionary tale? Here are five tips. 1. Stop feeling like there’s something wrong with you. Within the entrepreneurial world, those dealing with issues, such as depression, ADD or OCD are the rule, rather than the exception. “I have seen this over and over again in my millionaires,” says author and coach Jaime Masters, who has interviewed more than 350 millionaires for her Eventual Millionaire podcast. “I was very surprised in the interviews I’ve done how many said they have dyslexia, how many said they have ADD,” she says. It is more common than not at the higher levels of the business world—and you can use these tendencies to your advantage. 2. Take care of your basic needs. All entrepreneurs need to watch their health, but it’s even more critical for those who might tend toward neglecting their nutrition, sleep and other basics in favor of a 100-hour workweek. Charfen encourages his clients to move regularly, hydrate sufficiently, meditate consistently and eat well, all in an effort to combat the stress they’re dealing with from building, running and growing a business. 3. Create an early warning system. If you’re prone to the highest of highs and lowest of lows, know your cycles and triggers. Seek help when you need it. Maybe you know you’re more susceptible to depression in the dark winter months, or that you experience an energy crash after a period of sustained effort and long work hours. Be ready with your remedies—self-care, therapy, vacation, sleep, etc.—when those downtimes come. 4. Keep it simple. Jokes about “entrepreneurial ADD” abound for good reason. Masters says, “Because we’re so creative, it can feel a little jagged, like our brain is running us instead of us running our brain.” One solution: Keep as many elements of your life as simple as possible so you can focus on the areas that really need it or will benefit from your attention and creativity (Steve Jobs’ daily uniform of jeans, sneakers and black turtlenecks, for example). “Far too many entrepreneurs try to overcomplicate things,” Charfen adds. 5. Outsource your weak spots. Many high performers are more big-picture visionaries than detail-oriented sticklers. Couple that with an entrepreneurial ADD, and you might struggle with starting new things before finishing old things. Don’t try to tame yourself, though. Instead, Masters suggests hiring for the skills you lack. Find someone to take care of the details so you can stay in your center of genius. “Focus on your strengths,” she advises. In sum, work with your natural flow and tendencies rather than against them. Not everyone will understand why you stay up until 5 a.m. and then sleep until 3 p.m.—and they don’t need to. Your uniqueness is what will bring you to the top—and that’s when the naysayers will back down. Know yourself, know your goal and do what it takes to keep yourself moving in the right direction.

 

VISIT: http://www.amasssing.com/academy

 

Written by:
June 20, 2017

 

 

Don’t give up on your dreams | Sandra Bravo

Don’t give up on your dreams | Sandra Bravo

Don’t give up on your dreams

J.C. Penney, founder of the retail giant that bears his name, once evaluated one of his young clerks, stating he “wasn’t thorough and wouldn’t have much of a future in the retail business.” The employee? Sam Walton, founder of Wal-Mart.

Despite Penney’s hopeless prediction, Sam Walton built the largest retail empire in the world. The opinions of honest, well-intentioned people can sometimes be off the mark. Don’t let misguided judgments keep you from pursuing your dreams.

I love to read about people throughout history who were told they couldn’t do something, or wouldn’t amount to anything and then achieved great success. Never give up your dreams just because someone said something negative about you. It doesn’t matter what anyone says; the only thing that matters is what you say and do and think about your ability.

Throughout my life I’ve taken it to heart when someone doubts me or says I can’t really do something. First I examine myself and evaluate if I think they are right or wrong. And if I think they are wrong, just stand back and watch my determination grow.

If you have a dream that is reachable, and you really want something and are willing to work to achieve it, the sky is the limit. History has shown us this many times.

Michael Jordan was cut from his high school basketball team. He was later named the greatest athlete of the 20th Century by ESPN.

Barbra Streisand’s Broadway debut opened and closed on the same night.

One of Mark Cuban’s first jobs out of college was as a salesman at a computer store. However, he was more interested in cultivating new business than running a cash register. After he failed to open the store one day because he was busy with a potential client, his managers cut him loose. That was the last time he ever worked for someone else. Shortly after his termination, Cuban started his first company, MicroSolutions. Since then, he’s made billions of dollars.

Lucille Ball was told by the head instructor of the John Murray Anderson Drama School, “Try another profession. Any other.”

John F. Kennedy lost the election to be President of his freshman class at Harvard. He failed to win a post on the student council as a sophomore and later dropped out of Stanford Business School.

Steven Spielberg’s mediocre grades prevented him from getting accepted to UCLA film school.

Barbara Walters was told to “stay out of television” in 1957 by a prominent producer.

Bob Dylan was booed off the stage at his high school talent show.

Randy Travis was rejected by every major record label twice.

Michael Bloomberg was fired as a partner at Salomon Brothers, which eventually became Citigroup, and used his hefty severance check to start Bloomberg Communications, one of the country’s greatest companies. He is one of the richest people in the world and, of course, became the mayor of New York City.

Julia Child and two collaborators signed a publishing contract in 1953 to produce a book tentatively titled French Cooking for the American Kitchen. They worked on the book for five years. The publisher rejected the 850-page manuscript. Child and her partners worked for another year totally revising the manuscript, only to be rejected again. She and her collaborators went back to work, found a new publisher, and in 1961 they published “Mastering the Art of French Cooking,” which has sold more than 1 million copies.

Social media has provided seemingly unlimited opportunities for testing your dreams. Musicians and performers credit YouTube for launching careers. Writers self-publish and promote their works through a variety of platforms. Start-up companies have Facebook connections that broadcast their messages to audiences they could never have imagined reaching.

In short, technology has become a productive partner in dreaming.

The only thing stopping you from living out your dreams is you. It takes determination, motivation, confidence, desire, patience, perseverance and hard work. If you can muster all those elements, you will be unstoppable.

The best gift you and I have, its the gift of DREAMING, think about it, no-one can take it away, you get to choose and design what you dream about, anytime, anywhere, no-one sees it, judges it or controls it, ONLY YOU HAVE FULL CONTROL OF YOUR DREAMS, and you know what’s the best part?? its FREE AND DREAMS DO COME TRUE!!! Start dreaming NOW!!!!!!

May your wisdom guide you,

Until we meet again

Sandra Bravo

Visit : http://www.amasssing.com/academy

Amasssing Post .- Friendships can lead to good working relationships

Amasssing Post .- Friendships can lead to good working relationships

Two friends were walking through a dense jungle.  Knowing the dangers, they promised to stick together whatever happened.

Suddenly a tiger appeared in the bushes.  One friend immediately turned and ran, climbing up a tree and leaving his companion behind.  He watched as his friend dropped to the ground and played dead.

The tiger approached, sniffed around, and leaned down, seemingly whispering something in the man’s ear.  It roared once, then stalked away.  

Feeling ashamed, the other man climbed back down the tree.  “What did the tiger say to you?”

The man looked up.  “He said, ‘Never trust a false friend.'”

Some days, you just need to know you have got a friend.  

The point is you need to feel that someone “gets” you and is in your corner.  With all the push, pull and tug that can go on in the workplace (and it happens everywhere, folks, even at the good places), you have to develop your own support systems – and friends can be invaluable.  Good ones are like rocks; they keep us anchored during our personal storms.

You probably spend most of your waking hours at work, so friendships are natural. Working together can easily turn co-workers into best friends, making jobs more enjoyable and the workplace a home away from home instead of just a way to make a living. 

But friendships need to be managed appropriately just like every other workplace relationship.  Follow these simple guidelines so neither your friendships nor your job is at risk.

Limit social chatter. 

Everyone chats a little at work, but don’t let your friendly conversations overshadow your responsibilities.  Stay focused on your job. 

Keep private issues private. 

When you have problems to discuss, do it over lunch or after work. 

Avoid gossip. 

Most of us love to talk about other people, but keep your natural inclination to share rumors about co-workers or managers in check.  If colleagues realize you’re gossiping about them, the backlash could be unpleasant. 

Don’t do each other’s jobs

Pitching in to help a friend in a crunch is admirable, but keep it to a reasonable limit.  Your manager is in charge of assignments and responsibilities, not you.  Don’t spend so much time helping a friend do his or her job that you neglect your own. 

Include, don’t exclude. 

You may prefer the company of your friend, but don’t ignore the rest of your co-workers.  Invite other co-workers to lunch, and include them in your conversations so they don’t feel left out.  You may even make new friends by expanding your circle at work. 

Being there for another person can offer you huge rewards psychologically as well.  After all, part of the joy of a good friendship is being there for the other person when life gets rough – and it does get rough at times for everyone.

Keep in mind the words of Abraham Lincoln – someone who often needed friends along the difficult path of his presidency:  “The better part of one’s life consists of one’s friendships.” 

What is a friend?  The following description of friendship was discovered on the wall of a doctor’s office.  It was attributed to C. Raymond Beran.

Friends are people with whom you care to be yourself.  Your soul can be naked with them.  They ask you to put on nothing, only to be what you are.  They do not want you to be better or worse.  When you are with them, you feel like a prisoner feels who has been declared innocent.  You do not have to be on your guard.  You can say what you think, as long as it is genuinely you.

Friends understand those contradictions in your nature that lead others to misjudge you.  With them you breathe freely.  You can avow your little vanities and envies and hates and vicious sparks, your meannesses and absurdities, and in opening them up to friends, they are lost, dissolved on the white ocean of their loyalty.

They understand.  You do not have to be careful.  You can abuse them, neglect them, tolerate them.  Best of all, you can keep still with them.  It does not matter.  They like you.  They understand.  You can weep with them, sing with them, laugh with them, pray with them.Through it all – and underneath – they see, know, and love you.

What is a friend?  Just one, I repeat, with whom you dare to be yourself.

May your wisdom guide you,

Until we meet again

Sandra Bravo

 

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