I read an article recently that talked about how important it is to pay attention to the way in which you do things. As we all are aware, these are indeed trying times. But the way in which we think about them, and the way in which we do our work and live our lives is as much our own responsibility as the crazy outside forces affecting us.
This Too Shall Pass
Remember that while we worry about politics or whether that crazy neighbor is going to have a loud party again which might keep us up all night, to keep it all in perspective. We can be comfortable in our issues while we work them out. We can keep fighting the “good fight” and remember that right will win in the end. Welcome to life……
Be Proud of Yourself
Remember to pat yourself on the back for what you ARE accomplishing….. Bravo! Try and keep in mind that your only competition in life is YOURSELF and making yourself better as time moves on. Conquering your fears, overcoming your obstacles learning things you don’t know… in essence becoming a more centered more capable more loving person is all we really need concern ourselves with.
Black History Month
There is so much we don’t know about African American history. We didn’t learn what we Americans should have about all the contributions we’ve made in the United States. I hope one day that will be a thing of the past…. in the meantime I like to use the month to honor people. This year I’d like to recognize four.
Dr. Garret Morgan, Paul Cuffee, Miriam Benjamin and Shirley Chisolm.
Born to slaves, Dr. Garrett Morgan was only educated to the 6th grade level… but like many inventors he had an innate mechanical mind as was a skilled entrepreneur. He received a patent for the first gas mask invention in 1914. He also invented the traffic signal which of course we probably couldn’t live without today. Learn more about Garrett Morgan HERE
Paul Cuffee’s father was captured as a child and sold into slavery. He was freed by his Quaker master in Massachusetts in the 1740’s. Cuffee built a successful shipping empire in New England and established the first racially integrated school in Westport Massachusetts. He was a devout Christian and abolitionist, and helped establish the colony of Freetown in Sierra Leone. You can read more about him HERE
Miriam Benjamin was the second Black woman to receive a patent in 1888. Her invention consisted of a light-up chair, originally used in hotels to notify wait staff when patrons wanted service. However, this technology has since been adapted to airplanes and the U. S. House of Representatives. Its a powerful and impactful tool that we still use today. So… every time you call the airline steward or stewardess you can think of Miriam Benjamin. Here’s a link on her full story.
The great turnout in the mid term elections this past November and the resultant record numbers of women being elected made me think of Shirley Chisolm. A Brooklyn native, Shirley was the first black major party candidate to run for President of the United States in 1972 and the first woman Democrat to do so. While running for City Council she’s often quoted for her statement “If they don’t give you a seat at the table, bring a folding chair”.
While running for the presidency she said “I am not the candidate of black America, although I am black and proud. I am not the candidate of the woman’s movement of this country, although I am a woman and equally proud of that. I am the candidate of the people and my presence before you symbolizes a new era in American political history. And so it did… You can read all about this wonderful woman HERE
As a last thought for Black History Month, I would also like to share a short documentary film that I really enjoyed called “Railroad Ties”. Its only about twenty minutes. It won a 2019 Sundance award and happens to refer to a church I am quite familiar with.
Happy Valentines Day for all you lovers out there.
There are several stories about who Saint Valentines was. One dates to Roman times, another from the 17th century. In both cases the tradition can be traced to a priest who married young couples in secret. Whatever the true story may be, love is a global phenomenon and Valentines Day is celebrated around the world in fascinating and different ways. If you’d like to learn more about the celebration around the world click HERE.
Quotes for this post
Optimistic people play a disproportionate role in shaping our lives. Their decisions make a difference; they are inventors, entrepreneurs, political and military leaders – not average people. They got to where they are by seeking challenges and taking risks. DANEIL KAHNEMAN
Someone is sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago. WARREN BUFFETT
Start by doing what’s necessary; then do what’s possible; and suddenly you are doing the impossible. FRANCIS OF ASSISI
If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude. MAYA ANGELOU