How many times have you heard this? Does it usually spring up at the very moment someone is about to attempt to justify the unjustifiable?
Mmm, me too.
“It’s only natural,” is as bogus an excuse for bad behaviour as it is in the labelling of a lot of snacks and convenience foods. In a civilised society we are supposed to temper our “natural” inclinations, to take into account the feelings of others and the impact of our actions on our environment.
Pity then our children trying to make sense of a world where the media makes much of those that shout loudest, stomp on the weak and celebrate/revere the rude, crude and thoroughly undignified.
I feel bombarded by media showing the monetary success this kind of celebrity can bring and, even at my age, have problems processing the quantity and quality of the information, so how on earth can we expect young people to make sense of it, or to be able to filter the myth from the reality.
Unfortunately, and very sadly for all of us, when they try to emulate their modern-day role-models aren’t they then,
“Just doing what comes naturally?”
Throughout my various blogs I have referred many times to the quote,
“Love thy neighbour, as you would love thyself.”
I have also gone over how I did not “get it”, for years, that you need to start with the second part of this before you can understand loving others.
The veracity and truth of this comes back to me so many times, that, each time it does I feel I get a better understanding than that first light-bulb moment.
Friends are wonderful and I am very blessed with mine, but until you learn to listen and respect your inner voice, your inner self, you will continue looking for answers to your problems from others. And no-one can fulfill that role, can know what is truly best for you, better than you.
The act of talking an issue over with a friend is great; quite often allowing you to hear the solution and the sense of it. It can provide a clarity and a comfort that comes with sharing and their loving support.But, ultimately, the answer was within your grasp all the time.
In being your own best friend you need the honesty that comes with this kind of relationship and also the same generosity of spirit you would show to that friend when needed.
Finding peace in being alone should not isolate you, but provide you with a strength of self-awareness and allows you to be a better friend to those you love.
Having had some pretty stressful times lately, and with more just around the corner, I have felt a bit battered and bruised, or, more accurately, knocked down and trampled. Things that normally come as second nature to me have taken huge efforts and I have just let others slide completely.
But a couple of days ago I started to get fed up with myself. And it came down to something as simple as this. With my first cup of tea in my hand I asked myself what kind of day I WANT; not hope for or expect, but want.
On the first day all I wanted was a better day than the one before, and so it was. The next I wanted a good day, and so it was. It’s Saturday to-day and I want a great day and I will have it.
There was no fairy godmother involved in any of this and shit still happened on those days, but I also found times of happiness and contentment. The only thing different was me. I chose to be.
My head is full of “I can” and “I will”. Perhaps silly things to some, but they are the things I can control and achieve easily; quick wins.
“I will spend extra time on my hair and I will put my make-up on”
“I will wear something I love to-day.”
“I will eat something yummie and then something healthy.” (These two don’t often have common ground for me)
I haven’t been able to change the people around me or my circumstances, but I will get back up again and get on with my life, my projects and my loving those close to me.
Just had a quick look at one of those add-ons at the side of the article I was reading and have almost died laughing.
As you can imagine from the title it lists a host of movie stars who are all over 70, but, for some of them to be described as “Age-Defying”……..oh, excuse me , I’m off again!
Jane Fonda – maybe there are still some of her original parts there, but after the amount of work she has had done, to list her as age-defying is just… defying logic and reason.
Sophia Loren- ridiculous, trying to hold on to a past beauty instead of embracing who and what she is now – a survivor.
Faye Dunaway – She could join Mickey Rourke as poster boy and girl for NEVER having plastic surgery.
As for the rest, a lot of them look really great; if anything some have actually improved with age ( and perhaps a little help).
The difference is they are trying to be the best version of the age they are now, instead of searching for the Holy Grail of their youth and its beauty.
It must be hard for some, to have been known and adored for their looks, to accept the ravages of getting older.
I’m learning to live with it though!
God, I would love to think so! It takes me ages, honestly!
Just kidding, in my dreams.
I love that Dame Helen Mirren recognises the many aspects that add up to attractiveness, but I just find it a bit condescending and hypocritical.
She is still working the off-the-shoulder dresses and “sexy” look ( and well done her, regardless of and not despite her age), so I find her dismissal of this particular form of beauty rings a little hollow. I can almost hear the “Dahling” being purred after the statement.
You are still rocking it Dame Helen, so please, enjoy it and lay off the trite lamentations.
Just finished reading an article about how “romantic-comedies” as a genre of movie are failing women, and they have some suggestions on how to fix the issues.
Rom-coms are not my thing in general, but I do not agree with the criticism levelled at them on this occasion. The article believes that, in an effort to better represent women, this type of movie has made the female leads out to be “perfect” rather than complex, as we are in actual life. Does anyone (male or female) watching a Rambo movie think of it as a representation of the average male? I don’t really think so. And most Rom-Coms I have (partially) seen are about as realistic as “Rambo” and his mates. It’s not really their purpose. They are fantasy, fluff and a bit of fun. I would not have looked to them for female role models. Would you?
The article does go on to point out that TV is doing a much better job of showing modern woman, with all our strengths, weaknesses and complexities coming out through the progress of the series. They have the time and capacity to expand on ALL of the characters, regardless of sex.
I agree, and there are some excellent examples out there. I know this one is over now , but , for me, the female roles in “The Sopranos” were incredible and wide-ranging and all caught up in a traditionally heavily “MALE” environment.
If you want to look at media that is not supporting women in a positive way then take on the “Porn” industry. I don’t know how you can keep young boys or girls safe from this huge influence to their ideas on relationships, sex and understanding each other on a level other than as sexual objects. I pity parents trying to shield their offspring as pornography is now so easily accessible and difficult for them to police.
The consequences to young people of taking their lead from porn has a far more damaging and far-reaching effect on all of us than some bit of old tosh of a “will they/ won’t they make it up the aisle” movie.
Just watched an advert on TV for a new show about a guy, Sean, running from John O’ Groats to Lands End by the most indirect route, totalling 1000 miles. ( check out runwithsean.com )
Mmmm, I thought, I fancy trying to live by the “Indirect Route.”
Of course I couldn’t do this all of the time ( God forbid, the world might fall apart if the washing got behind ) , but just every now and again I would like to get from waking up back to bedtime without thinking about time and energy efficiency, and take the more meandering path from morning to night. I would like to set off to somewhere, but perhaps not get there because I found a wonderful distraction along the way.
I suppose this is just another way of expressing the “Stop and Smell the Roses” train of thought, but I liked this guy’s way of putting it.
Even for a weekend I am going to try to throw away my “Life Sat Nav” and wander down the many paths less travelled.
Do you remember that phrase from that really annoying TV quiz? Well I do, but I want to talk about it with a slightly different twist.
You know, you’re upset about something or someone and you think to yourself, “If I go quiet then they will notice and realise I am unhappy and ask me why and tease it out of me and then comfort me and make me feel better.”
In your dreams, and just for the record, somebody else’ nightmare!
Life is not the movies! You don’t stand, enigmatically, looking out of the window, whilst clutching at the silk drapes, a lace hanky dabbing at your nose and then have the hero somehow read your mind, come over to you, putting a strong arm around you and tell you everything will be all right.
REAL LIFE = You standing looking out of the window while the “hero” shouts, “Where are my underpants?” His version of reading your mind? ” She’s being a moody bitch again.”
Sorry men; cheap shot; true, but cheap! Anyway, this isn’t really about male vs female. It’s about us all.
None of us have the time or energy to figure out what’s going on in the mind of those around us. If you’re anything like me, I can’t even figure out my own mind. So, when we are faced with someone being quiet, withdrawn, not speaking to us, we don’t immediately think, ” Oh, maybe X has happened and she/he needs me to do Y.”
Do we bollocks! No! We think, ” There they go, being a moody cow/git again.” We Say What We See.
So ask; ask for help or understanding, whatever it is you need. When people find out your “mood” is not their fault they are usually very relieved and happy to console or listen; but ask. Give others their comfort zones and you may be amazed with what you get in return.
Yes, I have laughed along with the best of them when a smart comment seems to take the ground from under a politician or other such publicity hungry individual who has apparently grown too big for their boots. The individual that deals the blow seems to grow in stature, to be feared and revered at once. Who has not admired the skilled comedian that leaves the heckler speechless and regretting he bought his concert ticket.
While we laugh along with the giant-slayer we are part of the crowd, anonymous and comfortable, relieved that, for now, we are not the victim of the barbs. But it can come to us all.
I have been told that no-one can put you down without your co-operation; a sentiment I understand and appreciate, until you remember that we all have weak spots. Those more subtle slights that compound our self-doubt can be more deadly than an outright assault, one we see coming and can fend off with a smart repost.
Who among us is bullet-proof when in the line of fire? Not I. I have way too many faults and weaknesses to want anyone to “take me down”, humiliate or destroy me as part of some great sport. I would also take no pleasure in inflicting that on anyone else.
So leave it to the wannabe politicians and their inquisitors.
A “Great Put Down”. No Thanks
It’s really hard to pin-point exactly how I feel, having discovered that a way of life I have loved will have to come to an end. And on top of that to find that, even though I have thought for a long time people could no longer surprise me, well, guess what, they can!
I often wonder where some folk get the energy and spare time in their lives to inflict such pain and malice on others and, sadly, the last eight months, in particular the last ten days, have left me breathless with incredulity at the levels people can sink to. I feel a heartache and sadness that, at one point, I honestly did not think I could bear.
BUT, life is never just black or white. It is, it seems, one of the many( even more than 50) shades of grey; because there they were, those that I love and love me back, lifting this weight from my shoulders, buoying me up with kindness, understanding and peace. They offer me strength not pity, comfort not criticism. And when self-doubt threatens to engulf me I look at the quality of those close to me and think; “I can’t be that bad when these people care about me.”
I still panic at what lies ahead, but I believe things happen in life for a reason, that this will take me down a path I am meant to travel and I will travel that path in hope.