“No” Is a Complete Sentence

(Revised and expanded from the original, published in December 2, 2011)

Do you have a problem telling people “No?” It seems many of my friends or acquaintances feel over-scheduled or stressed-out because of the demands they have put on themselves. Like attracts like, so I too fall into that category more often than I would care to admit.

Please note that responsibility for this situation does not fall on the demands placed on us by others, but rather those that we place on ourselves. We have only ourselves to credit with being too busy, even if it was at the insistence of someone else that we do something. Why? Because we said “Yes.”

We frequently say “Yes” because we cannot think of a convenient, believable or acceptable reason why we should say “No.” How about “I don’t want to do that” for starters?no

“No” is a complete sentence. I am usually amused, sometimes annoyed, by people who respond negatively to a request I have made because they follow their answer with a litany of reasons or excuses why they cannot comply. “No” is a complete sentence!

Personally, I don’t need reasons or do I want excuses. If you do, fine. I don’t need that sort of thing because I hope someone is unable to fulfill my request because they have something even more wonderful and exciting to do. Good for them!

If you don’t want to do something someone else asks of you, please say “No, thank you!” Not, “No, because …,” which is only going to set you up for a discussion of why you should relent. Acting out of obligation instead of willingness doesn’t encourage clarity; neither does making excuses that sound like our own personal pity party. When we agree to do anything we don’t want to do we muddy the energy around us. Instead of enjoying the task, we experience an underlying, nagging feeling of resentment. Why not respectfully decline and allow someone else who wants to fulfill the request be given the opportunity to serve?

Just for part of today, think carefully before you answer “Yes” to something you don’t want to do. Weigh the outcome, take a deep breath, and then answer from your heart. If you can say “No” without anger, resentment or attitude you will find a freedom you haven’t experienced up until now.

In Spirit, Truth and Playfulness,
Terry

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@TerryDKaranen
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Terry Drew Karanen © 2011, 2016

Having Trouble Being Thankful?

Have you been seeing more problems around you lately? It’s hard to think of a time in the past when it seems the entire world was so upset. If we continue to feed our minds on all the slanted and bias stories in the media this agitation can greatly affect our personal lives.thanksgiving-blog

There is an old metaphysical principle that states what we focus on increases. The question is, How we can stay informed, but not allow that knowledge to paralyze us in life? There are two main ways we can do this.

FIRST:  Be mindful of how we are spending our time. It’s so easy to get caught up in the media hype and often fake news reports. We can ask ourselves if what we are hearing applies to us; or, is it just what amounts to a juicy piece of gossip that will lead us away from our own vision and mission in life?

SECOND:  Find things in our lives for which to be thankful. This doesn’t mean we run around with a perennial smile on our face, oblivious to the issues in our lives or the problems in our community. It does mean that we begin to give thanks for what’s working in our lives instead of everything else that other people and mass marketers want us to focus on.

By cultivating what we desire in our lives, instead of constantly looking for the next worst thing online, we set a firm foundation of peace that allows us to more fully serve others around us. For more information on how this is possible, have a look at my article in the November issue of “Guide for Spiritual Living:  Science of Mind® magazine,” entitled “The Path to Gratitude.” Email me for a free copy!

The coming weeks before year’s end will place us in celebrations of love, family and friendship. Whether or not we will allow recent and current events to affect our experience is up to us!

In Spirit, Truth and Playfulness,
Terry

#DrTerryMakingSense
#IAN1
@TerryDKaranen

When Abundance Becomes Clutter

What is your personal idea of abundance? First-world thinking about this is far different than what we find in third-world countries. More technologically-advanced countries tend to allow marketing and advertising to dictate what abundance means, while less-developed areas find joy in a simpler life-style.

We don’t have to fall into the corporate trap of “more is better.” Magazines, for example, abound on store shelves claiming the best way to lose weight or gain muscle. The vast majority of these articles have nothing to do with reality or scientific fact. What they do have is a sincere and dynamic desire on the part of the publishers to sell magazines.

Similarly, we are bombarded by ads on TV and now even on our mobile devices. Once again, these ads are devised to get us to buy products, even if the purchase is clouded in the reasoning that doing so will somehow better our lives or pocketbooks.

As the animals in the northern hemisphere prepare for winter we observe frantic gathering around us. How closely do we reflect this frenetic activity in the accumulations of possessions?  There’s nothing wrong with having our stuff. Our stuff, whatever that stuff is, is fun! We live on the human plane; that means we get to play with all the material things that give us joy.

But at some point the stuff is all just … well … STUFF! This is the perfect time of the year to wind down and see exactly what it is we want to take through the winter with us into a new year.cluter

Look around at just one area of your life. That can be your desk, maybe a closet or a whole room. Whatever you choose, make it manageable so as to not overwhelm yourself. There’s an old metaphysical saying that the Universe abhors a vacuum. In other words, the Universe will fill the space if we make it available.

The problem is no two things can occupy the same space at the same time. If we are to experience more abundance and joy in our lives we must make time and space for those things. The clutter we see around us is gunk and clogs up the flow of our prosperity. Take some time to de-gunk your life – the blessings we receive in return are amazing!

In Spirit, Truth and Playfulness,
Terry

#DrTerryMakingSense
#IAN1
@TerryDKaranen

Terry Drew Karanen © 2016

Being Centered Through Mindfulness

Do you find yourself becoming increasingly agitated as the United States moves closer to the 2016 Presidential Election? You’re not alone. I’m hearing from people locally, throughout the country, as well as abroad. They are feeling everything from disgust to sincere fear.

This writing is not to affect your vote for one particular candidate. It is, however, using the election, the debates and the misinformation of the media on all candidates as an example of how easily we can become hot and bothered by the opinions of others.2016-presidential-candidates

Being centered – meaning we are calm, confident and secure in life – is not what we are seeing around us with any regularity. That doesn’t mean we have to buy into the terror and the turmoil of the world around us. That goes for the latest office gossip, to family drama, to presidential elections and world crises. But how do we do that?

The Buddhist path has been one to lead us in the practice of mindfulness for thousands of years. And what is mindfulness? In its simplest form it’s to be aware, to be in the moment and is the diametric opposite of multi-tasking. In his book, “Mindful Living:  The art of remembering to remember,” author Dennis Merritt Jones tells us:

“Mindful living is a lifestyle – it is a way of walking a sacred earth, incorporating purpose and an awareness of God’s presence in all we say, think,
and do on our journey of a lifetime.”

We live in an ever-increasingly busy world. However, how busy we want to be is up to us, not the world or society. We have the ability to put down the mobile device during dinner; to choose television programs and films that are uplifting; to insure that we get our information at our pace, not on the news outlets schedule; and, to step back from the bait when those outrageous and annoying postings occur on social media.

Give yourself the gift of creating a centered life through mindfulness in everything you do. Yes, take time to smell the roses. Love yourself enough to enjoy where you are, because like it or not, this moment will never be here again.

In Spirit, Truth and Playfulness,
Terry

#DrTerryMakingSense
#TheGlobalVision
#AWorldThatWorksForEveryone
#IAN1
@TerryDKaranen

Terry Drew Karanen © 2016

Who Are You Listening To?

What is really important in your life? I mean, with all that’s going on in the world, what do we really need to know?

Apparently several papers and the Internet media feel the impending divorce of Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt is front page news. No, seriously. A local news radio station reported recently this was actually on the front page of several newspapers.

This is not about all the other events that could have taken precedent. We can all name several, but this media feeding frenzy speaks to just how much our news sources concentrate on the negative.

So after 12 years of being together, Bradgelina is about to be a thing of the past. One reporter said, “Another Hollywood marriage has broken up, not that we’re ever surprised about that.” Really? Statistically Pitt and Jolie have been together longer than the average marriage, which ends in divorce within eight years (McKinley Irvin, 2012). The media is not interested in the 50-year marriage Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward enjoyed, or that Goldie Hawn and Kurt Russell have been together over 30 years.

Similarly, the media is quick to tell you that half of all American marriages end in divorce, but fail to mention that ALSO means half of all American marriages survive! You get the point.

In New Thought we teach that our thoughts create. We can say all the affirmations we want and create beautiful affirmative prayers, but if we are constantly listening to every piece of gossip and tragedy from the media then it’s like shopping for organic groceries, and then going home to drink drain cleaner.blog22

Stop the madness! Let’s fill our minds with uplifting information. That doesn’t mean we ignore what’s going on in the world. Ernest Holmes, the founder of the Science of Mind philosophy never taught us to ignore our problems or the plight of others. He did, however, write that we deny the necessity that they should continue.

We have a responsibility to feed our minds with productive thoughts and an obligation to act on those ideas to the best of our abilities for the benefit of our planet. Not preachin’, jus’ sayin’.

In Spirit, Truth and Playfulness,
Terry

#DrTerryMakingSense
#IAN1
@TerryDKaranen

Why Bother?

Ever ask yourself that question? Perhaps you’ve tried relationship after relationship, but nothing seems to have any longevity. Maybe you’ve tried for years to please a relative or mate without success. You may have some examples of your own.

It can seem so hopeless, so frustrating.Blog

Why bother? Why bother, indeed!

I’ll tell you why. Because you matter. You deserve to be magnificent. You deserve to have fulfilling relationships, a great career or retirement pursuits, exceptional health and all the money you can spend, share and save.

And that’s why we bother. We bother to find out what is really motivating us to do the things we do. Our actions, goals and desire must not be based solely or primarily on pleasing others. We must decide what our purpose is in life, what enriches our soul and tickles our fancy.

If we can do that we won’t find ourselves frustrated by the actions or lack of actions of others. While we’re bothering to be our brilliant, unique selves, we’ll draw those people, places and things into our sphere for which we’ve been searching. We’ll be there not only to love and support them, but also to enjoy the pleasure of being loved, supported and enriched by their unique gifts as well.

Are you willing to bother with YOUR happiness as much as you may be doing for others? Give it some thought!

In Spirit, Truth and Playfulness,
Terry

#DrTerryMakingSense
#TheGlobalVision
#AWorldThatWorksForEveryone
#IAN1

 

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There is Power in Disempowerment

Do feel like you live from a place of power, meaning you feel empowered in your life, the decisions you make and the direction of your life? My friend and colleague, the well-known prosperity speaker and Unity minister, Rev. Edwene Gaines, introduces herself as a “woman of power.” That rubs some people the wrong way and Edwene couldn’t give a rat’s patooty about it.

It seems society teaches us to vie for power and then criticizes those who pursue it, particularly if that person is female, LGBTQ or non-white. But this is especially true for women of power. Men are extolled for their achievement of power, regardless of whether or not they use that power wisely or as a trump card for being a ruthless, uncaring and callous bully. But if women wield power they are considered ball-busting bitches. Yeah, I’m a feminist if you haven’t already gathered it. But I digress…Blog

The question is not about how inconsistent society is in the way it glorifies and at the same time disdains power. Victims of violent crimes, particularly rape and long-term abuse, are encouraged to take back their power. This process is not only cathartic, but also tremendously effective in advancing the healing process. This is one example of when the gaining and building of our power is life-giving and a positive action.

Here’s a question we can each ask ourselves:  Is there a time when we should let go of power to, in effect, disempower ourselves? Is there a place in this time of modern technology that allows us to be in control – empowered – in so many aspects of our life to simply be powerless? I believe there is and here’s how it looks.

Disempowering areas of our lives doesn’t mean we have given up or failed. Disempowerment is not about playing the victim or the martyr. What it IS about is choice. Have you allowed other people or society to decide for you where YOU need to be empowered? Do you notice if you have fallen into the media, advertising and marketing trap of needing the right car, perfect career, trophy mate or best clothes to feel empowered?

Nothing you see advertised – with VERY few exceptions – is being thrown at you with your best interests in mind. Rather, the push to buy, lease or otherwise obtain the stuff being puked up at us all over social and other media is to benefit the promoter of the items. That’s not to say manufacturers, artists and inventors shouldn’t be paid well for the products they produce. They should. It is, however, to say that we don’t need what they sell to achieve and enjoy the true power we seek.

Take some time this week to see where you’ve pushed for power or empowerment in areas of your life that leaves you with the sense of, “What in the hell am I doing this for?!?” Then, disempower THOSE actions and take back the power of choice in your own life to create a life truly worth living!

In Spirit, Truth and Playfulness,
Terry

#DrTerryMakingSense
#TheGlobalVision
#AWorldThatWorksForEveryone

Terry Drew Karanen © 2016

 

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Are You Missing Out?

Do you like to “people watch?” Considering the amount of time I spend in airport terminals for my “day job” it’s become a major pastime for me.

I was having breakfast in Miami International Airport this week with a view to the terminal concourse. Many of the passengers, airport employees, TSA agents and flight crews were all doing the same thing:  Walking by with their noses buried in a mobile device.

There was little if any interaction with other people around them. Sadly, they were missing so much! There was a latina woman struggling with a toddler who was determined to walk, NOT be carried. He won. An amazing woman in skin-tight blue jeans with multi-colored patches, sporting purple hair, and toting an outrageous handbag that would have made Mary Poppins jealous, nearly got run over by a courtesy cart.phone_2799032b

One young man nearly fell into a recycling bin cruising a hunk in a muscle shirt who was scratching himself. (Grandma Esther always used to tell me that in public “you should never scratch where it itches; scratch where it looks good.”) A Muslim couple stopped an African American TSA agent for directions and was greeted with a smile, graciousness and apparently received whatever it was they were asking for.

None of this is earth-shattering. But it was a slice of humanity, an interaction with human communication and quite entertaining. We can be so afraid of missing out on what everyone’s doing through being addicted to social media that we miss out on our own lives.

The question I pose to you is this:  Are you missing out? We’ve all been glued to our mobile devices or 24-hour cable news so we don’t miss out on the important stuff. But how important is that picture of someone’s dinner?

Our society has become more informed than ever before, yet at the same time less intimately connected with our friends and loved ones. Today people meet, date and breakup via text messaging. Don’t tell me that we aren’t marginalizing our intimate behavior and emotional consequences by hiding behind a touch screen.

How interested are you in your own life and what’s right in front of you? It’s an interesting question and it begs an answer that must include being more mindful of our surroundings, living in the moment and appreciating the life we have.

Not a sermon, just a thought.

In Spirit, Truth and Playfulness,
Terry

#DrTerryMakingSense
#IAN1
#TerryDrewKaranen

Terry Drew Karanen © 2016

 

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Description:  We can be so afraid of missing out on what everyone’s doing that we miss out on our own lives.

Got Problems?

Okay, so first of all, the graphic here is a kinda true! Ernest Holmes taught us that our reality is a real as we need it to be. The question here is how "real" do we want our problems to be?

Do you have problems? “OH NO!!!” screams the metaphysician in horror. “We NEVER have problems! We have ‘challenges’ or ‘opportunities,’ but NEVER problems! That’s so NEGATIVE!”

Reality check. We in New Thought and metaphysics need to realize how afraid some in our movement have become of this little word. What IS a “problem” anyway?

9 BlogWhile we may avoid them or try to admit they don’t exist, problems pop up and ignoring them can be disastrous. Here’s the skinny on “problem,” according to the Oxford Dictionary:

A matter or situation regarded as unwelcome or harmful and needing to be dealt with and overcome, or an inquiry starting from given conditions to investigate or demonstrate a fact, result, or law.

It’s not the end of the world and having one doesn’t mean someone takes away your minister, practitioner or spiritual counseling license. Lighten up, folks! We didn’t choose to float on pink clouds and giggle all day. We chose to live in the corporeal realm here on a planet with exquisite joys and annoying pains. There are now more than seven billion other spirits having a spiritual experience on earth and it’s gonna get messy at times!

Don’t be afraid of the word “problem.” It doesn’t mean half of what some people would like you to believe. Other words that can be used are difficulty, trouble, worry or complication if you’re that terrified of a seven-letter word. And, it can also be a challenge as well as an opportunity.

But to tell someone, with a giddy smile on our face, so excited that we’re about to wet ourselves, who’s just been given a diagnosis of stage 5 cancer, or who’s just found out their house burned down, that they have an “opportunity for growth” is just plain wrong.

It’s unloving.

It’s unkind.

And, it’s cruel.

This is NOT the way to enhance The Global Vision:  A World That Works for Everyone. So what can we do? Love them. Support them. Refrain from sympathy and exercise empathy. Be there for them.

And above all, pray with them to know the Truth. This week’s theme is, “Communion With God.” While prayer is one of the ways we can do this, there are numerous other ways as well. Some of these other methods will be of interest to those reading who are agnostic or atheist, as there’s virtually no reason to commune with an entity one thinks doesn’t care or who doesn’t exist.

Throughout the week over at the Facebook® page for Spirit, Mind and Body Foundation we’ll be looking at embracing spiritual guidance – both guidance from what appears outside us as well as what is already available in our own consciousness.

Returning to our topic here about problems:  Do you have any? Probably. We all have situations in our lives that we’d rather not tackle. Often those issues are brought about through means that seem totally out of our control. Either way, there’s a fool-proof way to handle them.

  • Acknowledge the problem.
  • Approach the situation like a medical triage unit – figure out what MUST be done right away, what SHOULD be done and what COULD be done.
  • Do what MUST be done.
  • Delegate authority and/or responsibility for what someone else could do for you.
  • Get professional or experienced help if you need it.

We don’t have to tough it out when stuff happens and it’s going to. Like everything else, however, how we deal with the problem will determine whether it gets resolved quickly and easily, or whether it gets morphed into a huge issue that could affect our health, wealth and well-being.

Like with everything else in life, the choice is ours. How will you choose to handle your next problem?

In Spirit, Truth and Playfulness,
Terry

#DrTerryMakingSense
#TheGlobalVision
#AworldThatWorksForEveryone

Your Personal Experience

Theme for the Week of March 7:
A Personal Experience of the Divine

“We believe that God is personal to all who feel this Indwelling Presence.”
– Ernest Holmes

Does the theme and quote for this week resonate with you? Or, does it sound like some kind of metaphysical psychobabble spoken by someone who appears more in tune with their pot dealer than reality?

Drastic contrasts, perhaps, but I don’t think my examples are far off. It used to bother me that I lived a life so different than most people. I’ve spent many years studying various spiritual beliefs. It’s allowed me to develop a sense of peace that allows me to accept my path, usually ignoring people who choose not to inquire as deeply of life as I feel I must.

Many years ago I took quite literally the words of Jesus of Nazareth when he was quoted as saying his followers should exist in the world as we know it, but not be part of it. It’s a wise – a very wise – piece of advice.

Now, especially, people are glued to their mobile devices, the news and TV to get the latest gossip on the presidential races. Reports are about as reliable as the weather:  ever-changing! I believe in being informed; I don’t believe in becoming all hot-n-bothered by stuff over which we have no control.

Do I always personally succeed in that? Hardly. One simple social media post can send me right over the edge if I allow it to do so. But these instances are exactly the time to practice Jesus’ advice and have that personal experience of the divinity within us all.

That inner guidance we trust is our own personal experience of the divine presence that lives, moves and has Its being through us. Divine intelligence – by whatever name you choose to call it – is always looking for a way to express in ways only we can individually articulate. 07A

This week in the daily edition of my blog, found on the Facebook® page for Spirit, Mind and Body Foundation, we’re going to be discussing personal expressions of God in all four major areas of our lives, plus three additional situations for your consideration.

I invite you to join in this dialog! Take time to examine the driving force in your life – be it God/Spirit/Divine Love or the facts of scientific knowledge and discovery. How have you adjusted your views of these forces in your life over the years? Does what you’ve been taught to believe still serve you? I look forward to hearing your answers!

In Spirit, Truth and Playfulness,
Terry

#DrTerryMakingSense
#TheGlobalVision
#AWorldThatWorksForEveryone