Previously, in ‘Feeling Good’ Part One
Step One: (P) The Power of a Positive Perspective – Feeling Good By Looking for the good. We experience life through our minds eye. Where the mind goes the body follows. Life is all a matter of focus.
Step Two: (A) Attitude determines Altitude. It’s impossible to doing right if we are always looking at what’s wrong. Neither can we head up if we continuously look down.
‘For beautiful eyes, look for the good in others; for beautiful lips, speak only words of kindness; and for poise, walk with the knowledge that you are never alone.’ – Audrey Hepburn
As soon as you incorporate the final two steps in the Art of Feeling Good, you will have life in the P.A.L.M of your Hand.
Step Three: (L) Live – Love – Laugh – Emotions generate motion in life. Love and laughter are packed full of lighthearted energy that gives you wings in life.
The best skill I ever learned is the ability to see the funny side of life. Laughing at the so-called tragedies of life helps me to crack them open and break them into bite size pieces.
Here’s a true life, powerful example. I am third generation African and in Africa, we have wild animals, such as lions.(he-he) One day, a few days after my mother’s eightieth birthday, mom was attacked and partially eaten by three supposedly tame, teenage lions.
‘A gentle word, a kind look, a good-natured smile can work wonders and accomplish miracles.’ William Hazlitt, (1778-1830) English Author
I phoned from America, the nurses were shaving mom’s mauled head in
the emergency room. They kindly permitted me to speak to mom while they worked on her. One nurse held the phone to mom’s ear so mom and I could talk. (They made his exception because mom was not expected to survive.)
‘A sense of humor… is needed armor. Joy in one’s heart and some laughter on one’s lips is a sign that the person down deep has a pretty good grasp of life’. – Hugh Sidey, (1927-2005) American Journalist for Life and Time magazines.
Here’s how the conversation went.
“Mom, what’s this I hear about you feeding the lions?” (My way of hiding my anxiety.)
“Well, I didn’t actually mean to feed them. Its just that they were teenagers and you know how teenagers are, they’re always hungry.”
Even though mom had just survived the most traumatic and worst
situation imaginable, she still was able to come back with love and laughter.
‘So many tangles in life are ultimately hopeless that we have no appropriate sword other than laughter.’ – Gordon W. Allport, (1897-1967) American Psychologist
Now for the physical proof of the power of Love and Laughter. Mom was in terrible physical shape after the lions fed. She not only suffered dreadful damage from ‘those hungry teenagers,’ but she also had cracked ribs from the jaws of one of the lions and a broken hip from when she fell. Consequently, she had several major surgeries in order to patch the holes in her body.
‘Laughter is important, not only because it makes us happy, it also has
actual health benefits. And that’s because laughter completely engages the body and releases the mind. It connects us to others, and that in itself has a healing effect.’ – Marlo Thomas, (1937) American Actress, Producer, Activist
The doctors and staff fully expected mom’s departure from life to be eminent. Meanwhile, my three sisters and I made a pact, that when in mom’s presence we’d be positively cheerful and shower her with lots of love. One of us stayed with her all the time and once a day the four of us had tea with mom. During our tea time, that intensive care room was filled with laughter and good humor. Mom loved it. (Bless the Matron for she did not enforce the two visitor limit and ‘silence please’ rules on us.)
‘Gratitude helps you to grow and expand; gratitude brings joy and
laughter into your life and into the lives of all those around you.’ – Eileen Caddy MBE, (1917-2006) Born in Egypt, Spiritual teacher, Author and a Founder of Findhorn in Scotland.
Naturally we each cried and dealt with our fears, but in front of mom, we were cheerful and grateful she was still alive. So we gave her lots of love inside a jovial family get together.
‘Laughter heals all wounds, and that’s one thing that everybody shares. No matter what you’re going through, it makes you forget about your problems. I think the world should keep laughing.’ – Kevin Hart, (1979) American Actor, Writer, Comedienne and Producer
Mom not only lived another six years, but she was out of ICU within nine
days and back home with my youngest sister in ten days. The Shona doctor and nurses were amazed. In fact, the doctor admitted that mom was not expected to live and he believed that her recovery came about because we filled her room with such love and laughter.
‘I believe that imagination is stronger than knowledge. That myth is more potent than history. That dreams are more powerful than facts. That hope always triumphs over experience. That laughter is the only cure for grief. And I believe that love is stronger than death.’ – Robert Fulghum, (1937) American Author
Oh, and by the way, Zimbabwe had a huge shortage of even the most basic medical supplies. We often had to scramble to find painkillers for mom because the hospital had run out. Mom’s treatment consisted of oxygen, topical Betadine, and pain-killers. But Love and Laughter pulled her through.
Step Four: (M) Moment by Moment Motivation – Live one
moment at a time
‘Cease trying to work everything out with your mind. It will get you nowhere. Live by intuition and inspiration and let your whole life be a Revelation.’ -Eileen Caddy MBE,
In Africa put things in perspective by asking: ‘How do you eat an Elephant?’ The answer, One small bite at a time.
‘Doing the best at this moment puts you in the best place for the next moment.’ – Oprah Winfrey, (1954) American Media Proprietor, Talk Show Host, Actress, Producer
It is good to be able to see the end goal and the big picture. But so often the ego jumps in and we think we have to do it all, by ourselves. We can become overwhelmed. If you fund yourself procrastinating, is most likely because the task seems too daunting. The cure for procrastination is ti just get started by doing the smallest thing. Start something and focus only on that small task in that present moment. Life is so much easier when sectioned into small, bite-size, do-able pieces.
‘One day at a time’, has been a long time recovery slogan. This statement is a reminder to only focus on the achievable, ‘today’.
‘The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.’ – Lao Tzu
The best part about living in the moment is the amazing accumulated effect. It only takes a moment to thank someone for their help. Or compliment a person for something good about them. Smile at someone, see a beautiful soul behind their eyes. It only takes a moment and yet it can make a lifetime’s difference.
Each of these minute acts of natural kindness and generosity ripples good vibrations throughout the Universe. The moment by moment contributions accumulate and bless you with a lifetime of feeling good. It is virtually impossible to do good in the world without feeling good yourself.
‘How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.’ – Anne Frank, German-born Jew, Diarist and Writer of her experiences during the Holocaust.
The P. A. L. M. method of Doing Good, Feeling Good and Being Good in all ways.
P = Power of Positive Perspective
A = Attitude determines Altitude
L = Love and Laughter
M = Moment-by-Moment Motivation
‘Love is an act of endless forgiveness, a tender look which becomes a habit.’ -Peter Ustinov (1921-2004) English Avtor, Writer, Dramatist.