Welcome to my Daily Inspiration - Daily Quote. See today's daily inspirational quotes below.
May the world be kind to you, and may your own thoughts be gentle upon yourself. - Jonathan Lockwood Huie

Friday, October 30, 2009

Nelson Mandela quotes: There is no passion to be found playing small

There is no passion to be found playing small - in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living.
- Nelson Mandela

The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.
- Nelson Mandela

After climbing a great hill, one only finds that there are many more hills to climb.
- Nelson Mandela

After being imprisoned for 27 years for opposing apartheid, Nelson Mandela served from 1994 to 1999 as President of South Africa following the abolition of apartheid.

Further reading: I choose to adapt to the circumstances in which I find myself.

Love even those who hate you

Let me bring peace into moments of chaos - jlh

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Charles Schulz quotes: I've developed a new philosophy... I only dread one day at a time.

I've developed a new philosophy... I only dread one day at a time.
- the character Charlie Brown in Charles M. Schultz' Peanuts comic

The way I see it, it doesn't matter what you believe just so you're sincere.
- Linus in Charles M. Schulz’ cartoon Peanuts

Maybe life isn't really as complicated as we make it out to be. Perhaps a simple child-like attitude would create a less stressful and happier life.

Further reading: Shed the scales from your eyes

Choose to be as a young child - fully awake, eager for the next experience. - jlh

Where There is Love, Nothing is Missing - a Parable - jlh

Rabindranath Tagore: Every child comes with the message that God is not yet discouraged of man.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Wayne Dyer quotes: Failure does not exist

Failure does not exist. Failure is simply someone else's opinion of how a certain act should have been completed. Once you believe that no act must be performed in any specific other-directed way, then failing becomes impossible. - Wayne Dyer

Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm.
- Winston Churchill

Fall seven times, stand up eight.
- Japanese Proverb

Further reading: Failure? Never

I don't know the key to success, but the key to failure is to try to please everyone - Bill Cosby

Robert F. Kennedy quote: Only those who dare to fail greatly can ever achieve greatly

Monday, October 26, 2009

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder - anonymous quote

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder
- Anonymous

The bird in the photo is a Brown Pelican. Few people would describe the Brown Pelican as either a beautiful bird or a graceful flier. And it is not a delicate eater. When it spies a fish, it partially folds its wings and plunges almost straight down, impacting the water with a giant splash as it nets the fish in its neck pouch. Yet we, especially children, find pelicans lovable and endearing.

How many of us look in the mirror and dislike what we see? Suppose we could be as accepting of ourselves as we are of nature's other creations.

Further reading: Life is magnificent - just as it comes.

The beauty does not live out there; the beauty's in my eyes. - jlh

Love is saying "I feel differently" instead of "You're wrong."

Aging With Grace by Dr. David Mokotoff

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Helen Keller quotes: Life is either a daring adventure or nothing

Life is either a daring adventure or nothing. – Helen Keller

Self-pity is our worst enemy and if we yield to it, we can never do anything wise in this world. - Helen Keller

Helen Keller (1880-1968) overcame being both deaf and blind to become a famous author, lecturer, and activist.

Further reading: Honor your being

Discovery and adventure, rather than fear

Life's burdens are lighter when I laugh at myself. - jlh

May your spirit soar

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Mark Twain quotes: Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness

Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts. Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one's lifetime. 
- Mark Twain

I have been very blessed in having been able to get a tiny peek into the nature of life in a few places around the world. Nothing else has ever brought me so face-to-face with the rigidity of my own thinking as an hour on a street in Cairo or Beijing or a walk through the countryside of Mexico or Peru. Travel opens my mind and my heart more than years of study and contemplation ever could.

We are all one whether we dine on corned beef in New York City, black-eyed peas and cornbread in rural Louisiana, or roast guinea pig in Peru.

Further reading: The Paradox Of Living In The Moment

Friedrich Nietzsche: There are no facts, only interpretations

Never Let Anyone Get Your Goat, Push Your Buttons, Get You Riled Up, or Annoy You - 6 Ways to Cope - jlh

Monastery Housekeeping (one of my Aha moments in traveling to other cultures)

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Dont cry because it's over, smile because it happened.

Don't cry because it's over, smile because it happened.
- Anonymous

Have no regrets. How much better to have enjoyed the experience, or the person, for a time than to have never experienced that joy. Release both the good times and the bad times. The nature of life is constant change. Celebrate change.

Further reading: Rabindranath Tagore quote: If you cry because the sun has gone out of your life, your tears will prevent you from seeing the stars.

Helen Keller: Self-pity is our worst enemy and if we yield to it, we can never do anything wise in this world.

Sympathy Quotes about Death

How to get over regrets and resentments

Rabindranath Tagore quotes: Faith is the bird that feels the light and sings when the dawn is still dark.

Faith is the bird that feels the light and sings when the dawn is still dark. - Rabindranath Tagore

The darkest night is often the bridge to the brightest tomorrow. - Jonathan Lockwood Huie

Today is your day to Spread Wing and Soar. Fly Life on Free Wings, and Sing to its Glory. - Jonathan Lockwood Huie

Faith is taking the first step even when you don't see the whole staircase. - Martin Luther King, Jr.

Further reading: The path of the adventurer is a path of joy - jlh 

  A life lived in fear is a life half lived

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Anais Nin quotes: Each friend represents a world in us.

Each friend represents a world in us, a world possibly not born until they arrive, and it is only by this meeting that a new world is born.
~ Anaïs Nin

A friend is someone who understands my past, believes in my future, and accepts me just the way I am.
- Anonymous

Friends are those rare people who ask how we are and then wait to hear the answer.
- Anonymous

Further reading: Quotes on Friendship and Friends

Show Your Honest Appreciation - Today.

Our loved ones

12 Life Lessons I Learned From My Cat

Sunday, October 18, 2009

What you resist persists - Carl Jung

What you resist persists - Carl Jung

To explain Jung's point by way of example... I say, "I'm not going to have a cigarette today, I'm never going to smoke ever again." Far from moving my thoughts away from smoking, I am focusing all my attention on the subject of smoking, even though in a negative way. A far better way to avoid smoking would be to think about a completely different subject - one that grabs your whole attention, and diverts your thinking. Go to the gym or turn Gabrielle Roth up loud and put your whole body, mind, and spirit into your dance. Now, what was I trying to remember NOT to do?

Further reading: Choose Your Habits, Choose Your Life - 5 Secrets For Breaking Your Bad Habits

De-Stress Your Life - Reducing Stress

12 Ways to De-Stress Your Life
- Jonathan Lockwood Huie

Here are 12 ways to de-stress your life...

1. Get more physically active. If your doctor okay's strenuous activity, get out and work up a sweat. Digging in your garden for a few hours is a real stress-buster. Go for a hike in the woods, pick a steep hill. Remember what you used to love doing, or always wanted to do, and begin today. Dust off your old bike. Buy an inexpensive kayak and learn to paddle. Choose outdoor activities whenever you can. When you are limited by weather or time, choose aerobic dancing to compelling music that captures your whole being. Or just workout until you are tired. But whatever you choose, focus on your activity. Don't talk, watch TV, or think about anything except what you are doing at the instant.

2. Spend time alone in nature. Who can stress while walking barefoot on a lonely expanse of sand, watching the seabirds soar and dive, and listening to the waves break and the wind rustle through the beach grass. Combine physical activity with time spent alone in nature by hiking, paddling, or biking.

3. Release your attachments. Stress is caused by the fear that we will lose what we value. We stress because we fear that we will lose our health, our job, our home, our spouse or friends. We stress that we will have less tomorrow than we had yesterday.

By releasing your attachment to your possessions and your attachment to your relationships, you can eliminate most of the stress in your life. Make a daily practice of visualizing your life without those things you most value. Visualize yourself without a car, a computer, a cell phone, and recognize that those things do not define the true value of your life. If you are in a highly troubled relationship and fear that the other person may leave you, visualize your life without that person, and accept that your happiness in life comes from within, and not from any other person.

4. Simplify your life. Once you have released your attachments to your possessions, consider releasing those things physically as well. Search through your home for things you have not used in a year. Consider which of those items could be given away without loss to your happiness. Perhaps you want to ask yourself about the true value to your life of other possessions as well. What do you own that creates happiness and what creates stress? Would downsizing de-stress your life?

5. Reduce your obligations. Some people keep to themselves. Others thoroughly enjoy being president of their kid's school PTA and volunteering to drive seven girls to scout camp. But many others suffer with too many self-imposed obligations. If you don't enjoy a responsibility, and it isn't truly crucial, just say NO. Focus your volunteering on those activities that give you great joy and satisfaction.

6. Learn to love your job, or get a job you love. This idea for de-stressing your life is the most difficult one for many people. If your reaction is that you simply must continue with a job you hate for the sake of your family, think again. Your family loves and cherishes you for far more than the paycheck you bring home. If taking a different, more personally rewarding, job would make you a happier and more pleasant person, don't you think your family would appreciate the change? Turn the tables and ask yourself if you would want your spouse to work at a job they hated in order to bring home a few more dollars each week? Trust that they would make the same choice for you. Love and honor yourself enough to choose a career that brings satisfaction as well as a paycheck.

7. Begin a project you love. Give yourself a little time each day to work on something creative that you love doing and that makes you feel good about yourself. Knit a scarf. Play the piano. Take up woodcarving.

8. Know that you are not responsible for the whole world. If you are going to make a difference, take up a cause. Campaign for the candidate of your choice, volunteer in your local soup kitchen, write a big check to Doctors Without Borders. But then turn off the eleven o'clock news. Worrying about the state of the world, or the economy, or crime in your community, or the health of your Aunt Judy in Des Moines, or whether your adult child's marriage is going to fail, is a waste of your time and causes much unnecessary stress.

9. Give your time to others. It's hard to worry so much about yourself when you give your time to help those less fortunate. Consider becoming a community volunteer.

10. Forgive everyone, especially yourself, for everything that has ever been done or been left undone. Your anger and hatred hurt you. Forgiveness is the salve that removes the sting of past injuries. Resentments and regrets do not cure the past, but unconditional forgiveness does.

11. Have gratitude for everything that has ever happened or not happened. All of your life is part of a grand plan. You wouldn't be who you are today if you had missed out on any of your experiences.

12. View life as an adventure. Everything changes. The inherent nature of life is constant change. To fear change is to fear life itself. Once you accept that whatever you hate about your life will change soon, and that whatever you love about your life will also change, you can view all of life as the adventure that it is, and end your stress.

Further reading: Choose Your Habits, Choose Your Life - 5 Secrets For Breaking Your Bad Habits

What To Do When Your Whole World Is Falling Apart?

How To Stop Worrying By Using the Qigong Release Exercise

Winston Churchill quotes: We have always found the Irish a bit odd. They refuse to be English.

We have always found the Irish a bit odd. They refuse to be English. - Winston Churchill

Like most Winston Churchill quotes, this one contains an odd biting kind of humor. So how is this strange quote inspirational?

What is the one characteristic of other people that we usually find unpleasant? Mostly, what we dislike in other people is that they are different, in some substantial way, from ourselves, our friends and our neighbors.

Churchill highlights this universal human frailty through his witty quip.

Further reading: On the Unworkability of Vengeance

Try a new perspective on diversity. Across the country and around the world, we are all one. - jlh

Life is a reflection of intent - jlh

How To Be Happy In Life - The 9 Paths To Happiness

Saturday, October 17, 2009

George Washington Carver quotes: Ninety-nine percent of the failures come from people who have the habit of making excuses.

Ninety-nine percent of the failures come from people who have the habit of making excuses.
- George Washington Carver

George Washington Carver (January 1864 – January 5, 1943), an American botanist and inventor who was born into slavery, revolutionized the previously cotton-based agriculture of the Southern United States through his research into and promotion of peanuts and sweet potatoes. He is noted for inventing or commercializing over 100 varied products made from peanuts.

There are a hundred valid reasons why something can't be done, 

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Carl Jung quotes: Naturally, every age thinks that all ages before it were prejudiced

Naturally, every age thinks that all ages before it were prejudiced, and today we think this more than ever and are just as wrong as all previous ages that thought so. How often have we not seen the truth condemned! It is sad but unfortunately true that man learns nothing from history. - Carl Jung

Our honorable and worthy ancestors knew that the world was flat, motionless, and the center of the universe. They knew the human body could not withstand the forces of traveling on a train moving faster than 19 mph. They knew that the way to salvation was exorcising witches and slaying non-believers. They knew that it was a mortal sin to marry someone of a different skin color.

Our grandchildren's grandchildren will shake their heads in shame at some of the beliefs that we hold most dear today - the question is, which ones?

Further reading: How do You View the World?

Eleanor Roosevelt quote: The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.

Carl Jung quotes

Lao Tzu: He who knows others is wise. He who knows himself is enlightened.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Benjamin Franklin quotes: Love your Neighbor; yet don't pull down your Hedge.

Love your Neighbor; yet don't pull down your Hedge.
- Benjamin Franklin

Like all of life, it's a balance. Yes, having universal compassion, acceptance, and kindness toward one's neighbor is central to being a noble person. And that applies equally whether the neighbor lives across the street or around the world. At the same time, as Robert Frost says, "Good fences make good neighbors." Honoring other people's life choices and behaving kindly toward them is very different from enjoying their presence. Further, most of us would probably be happier if we spent more time quietly enjoying our own company and a good book.

In particular, be compassionate toward people who are continually unhappy and constantly complain or gossip, but avoid their company except when you are on a specific errand of mercy toward them.

Further reading: George Washington: It is far better to be alone, than to be in bad company

Happy Friends - Happy You

There is sanctuary in being alone with nature. - jlh

Meddling - 5 Questions To Ask Yourself Before Offering Helpful Advice

Monday, October 12, 2009

Aesops Fables: The Fisherman and the Little Fish

The Fisherman and the Little Fish - Aesop

A poor Fisherman, who lived on the fish he caught, had bad luck one day and caught nothing but a very small fry. The Fisherman was about to put it in his basket when the little Fish said:

"Please spare me, Mr. Fisherman! I am so small it is not worth while to carry me home. When I am bigger, I shall make you a much better meal."

But the Fisherman quickly put the fish into his basket.

"How foolish I should be," he said, "to throw you back. However small you may be, you are better than nothing at all."

Moral: A small gain is worth more than a large promise. 

Further reading: Marie Curie quote: One never notices what has been done; one can only see what remains to be done.

Aesop: The Fox and the Grapes

Marianne Williamson: Joy is what happens to us when we allow ourselves to recognize how good things really are.

Show Your Honest Appreciation - Today.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Is That All There Is - Peggy Lee

Is That All There Is
- Peggy Lee

Sometimes our lives are in deep crisis, and we are in an active struggle to survive. Other times, such as when we are newly in love, life appears near perfection. But much of life occurs between the polar states of pain and joy, and often, when we truly inquire of our inner being, the answer is, "Is that all there is to life?" "Is this all I can expect from life?"

Whenever life is not awful, but occurs as somehow unfulfilling, listen for the small quiet voice within that is whispering, "THIS is your calling. THIS is your purpose. THIS is your reason for being." Be gentle with yourself. You may have shushed that inner whisper for years, so be patient if you don't hear it at once. Begin now to pay attention and begin to listen for that voice.

Further reading: Where does your path lead?

Joseph Campbell: Life is without meaning. You bring the meaning to it.

VISION - the fifth Point of Simply An Inspired Life

What is Honor? Is there a place for Honor today?

Maybe So, Maybe Not. - Ancient Taoist Proverb

Maybe So, Maybe Not.
- Ancient Taoist Proverb

One day, a farmer's horse ran away. His neighbors expressed sympathy, "What terrible luck that you lost your horse!" The farmer replied, "Maybe so, maybe not."

A few days later, the horse returned, leading several wild horses. The neighbors shouted, "Your horse has returned, and brought more with him. What great fortune!" The farmer replied, "Maybe so, maybe not."

Later that week, the farmer's son was trying to break one of the wild horses and got thrown to the ground, breaking his leg. The villagers cried, "Your son broke his leg, what a calamity!" The farmer replied, "Maybe so, maybe not."

A few weeks later, soldiers from the national army marched through town, conscripting all the able-bodied young men for the army. They did not take the farmer's son because of his broken leg. Friends shouted, "Your boy is spared, what tremendous luck!" To which the farmer replied, "Maybe so, maybe not."

Moral: Everything is not what it appears to be.

Further reading: Jimmy Yen - My Personal Greatest Hero

Lao Tzu: The words of truth are always paradoxical.

Aesop: Gentleness and kind persuasion win where force and bluster fail

How To Talk Yourself Into Making Personal Changes

Friday, October 9, 2009

Albert Camus: Life is a sum of all your choices.

Life is a sum of all your choices. - Albert Camus

To live is to choose. But to choose well, you must know who you are and what you stand for, where you want to go and why you want to get there. - Kofi Annan

It is our choices ... that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities. - J. K. Rowling (Harry Potter and The Chamber of Secrets)

Affirmation: I make my life choices with intention, and not from habit. 

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Life is like a box of chocolates. - Forrest Gump

Mama always said life was like a box of chocolates. You never know what you're gonna get.
- the movie Forrest Gump

What a positive upbeat way to describe the uncertainty of life. I have no idea what life will give me next, but whatever it is, it will be sweet.

Further reading: Aesop's Fables: The Miller, His Son, and the Ass

Elbert Hubbard quote: Do not take life too seriously. You will never get out of it alive.

Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away.

Living Your Inspired Life - video

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Martin Luther King, Jr. - A genuine leader is not a searcher for consensus but a molder of consensus.

A genuine leader is not a searcher for consensus but a molder of consensus.
- Martin Luther King, Jr.

Your example is far more influential and inspiring than any words of instruction, or threats, or even words of encouragement.
- Jonathan Lockwood Huie

You do not lead by hitting people over the head — that's assault, not leadership.
- Dwight Eisenhower

I cannot trust a man to control others who cannot control himself.
- Robert E. Lee

Further reading: Leadership quotes

LtG. Hal Moore: When we step on the battlefield, I will be The First Boots On and the Last Boots Off.

John F. Kennedy: Conformity is the jailer of freedom and the enemy of growth

Mahatma Gandhi quote: We must be the change we wish to see

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Albert Schweitzer: Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success.

Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success. If you love what you are doing, you will be successful.
- Albert Schweitzer

Working at a job you hate is unlikely to bring you either happiness or success. Do what you love. Whether wealth follows or not, you will be happy. And, you are far more likely to also gain financial reward if you are working at something that inspires and excites you.

Further reading: Albert Schweitzer: At times our own light goes out and is rekindled by a spark from another person

Martin Luther King, Jr. - If a man is called to be a street sweeper

Happiness is not the absence of problems, but the willingness to deal with them joyfully. - Jonathan Lockwood Huie

Gandhi quote: A 'No' uttered from deepest conviction is better and greater than a 'Yes' merely uttered to please, or what is worse, to avoid trouble.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Pain is inevitable, Suffering is optional. - Buddhist proverb

Pain is inevitable, Suffering is optional.
- Buddhist proverb

Pain is what the world inflicts upon us. Suffering is our emotional reaction when we fail to make the difficult conscious decision to choose Joy.
- Jonathan Lockwood Huie

Nobody can hurt me without my permission.
- Mahatma Gandhi

Gandhi's observation is fundamental to walking the path of a joyful life, but do understand that by "hurt" Gandhi means emotional suffering rather than physical pain.

Think of the playground rhyme, "Sticks and stones can break my bones, but words can never hurt me." In real life, most of us often feel very hurt by the words of others, but we can choose to moderate those feelings of perceived injury.

Further reading: Wisdom of Gandhi

Joy is a Choice - but Not an Easy Choice - jlh

Perspective on Tradition: An Open Mind

Joy blooms where minds and hearts are open. - jlh

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Ralph Waldo Emerson : Nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm.

Nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm. 
- Ralph Waldo Emerson

Ideas, yes.
Inspiration, yes.
Creativity, yes.
Planning, yes.
Perseverance, yes.
More perseverance, yes.

And overarching all those, the success of a project is best predicted by the enthusiasm of its participants.

Affirmation: I live with enthusiasm, and give thanks for my life.

Further reading: Robert F. Kennedy quote: Only those who dare to fail greatly can ever achieve greatly

Mark Twain quote: Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the ones you did do. Throw off the bowlines.

A life lived in fear is a life half lived

ACTION - the sixth Point of Simply An Inspired Life

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Henry David Thoreau: The price of anything is the amount of life you exchange for it.

The price of anything is the amount of life you exchange for it. - Henry David Thoreau

What is money? Money is a representation of the number of hours you worked to earn it. So money represents a quantity of your life. But the effort you expend is not always represented by money. For example, time you spend doing yard work or housework, or time you spend helping someone else.

So, as Thoreau points out, the price of anything can best be measured in the amount of life you exchange for it, both because that metric includes effort for which money is not exchanged, and because it is a more intuitive and visual measure.

Now, consider whether you are receiving good value for the amount of life you are exchanging.

Further reading: Joy is a Choice - but Not an Easy Choice

Be Happy Dont Worry Quotes - Stop Worrying and Be Happy

A Story of Money

Do You Own Your Money and Stuff Or Do They Own You? - Take This Quiz to Find Out

Friday, October 2, 2009

Henry David Thoreau: The question is not what you look at, but what you see.

The question is not what you look at, but what you see. - Henry David Thoreau

It all depends on how we look at things, and not how they are in themselves. - Carl Jung

We don't see things as they are, we see things as we are. - Anaïs Nin

People only see what they are prepared to see. - Ralph Waldo Emerson

The beauty does not live out there; the beauty's in my eyes. - Jonathan Lockwood Huie

The idea that things and events do not have an absolute nature is part of our heritage of timeless wisdom. This same idea has been expressed in many different ways throughout history.

Further reading:
Anais Nin: We don't see things as they are, we see things as we are.

Friedrich Nietzsche: There are no facts, only interpretations

Never Let Anyone Get Your Goat

Visualize a kinder world

Perspective on Tradition: An Open Mind

The most dangerous phrase in the language is,
"We've always done it this way."
- Grace Hopper

A question is asked and the answer returns, "Because we've always done it that way." Perhaps that isn't the most inspiring answer possible, but it reflects at least a moment's consideration of the question, and for me, that's a good thing. Why do you drive a Ford? Because my family has always owned Fords. Okay by me.

However, when a question is asked and the answer is "Huh?" we are dealing with something of an entirely different nature. Let's say you are an American male, and the question is, "Why do you wear pants and a shirt?" "Huh?" Perhaps the actual answer is a snotty, "Because I'd look funny in a dress," but it still means, "Huh? That's not even a question." Of course the reason virtually all American males go into the world in pants and shirt rather than dresses, kilts, kimonos, jumpsuits, pajamas, bathrobe, or whatever is that virtually all other American males wear pants and shirt. Purely cultural.

You're Christian (most denominations), "Why do you take off your hat in church?" "Respect." "How is taking off your hat respectful?" "Huh?" You're Jewish, "Why do you wear a yarmulke (hat) in Synagogue?" "Respect." "How is wearing a hat respectful?" "Huh?" Of course religious experts would have ready references to "answer" the question, but that is just another way of saying, "Because my culture has done it that way for centuries."

The point of this writing is NOT that we SHOULD do anything differently from the way we have "always done it." In many cases, it would be downright foolhardy to buck cultural norms. That the people of some political unit agree to drive on the right (or left) side of the highway is purely cultural, like agreeing to wear or not wear head covering during worship. However, a unilateral personal decision to choose the other side of the road would risk a fine, imprisonment, or grave bodily harm. Same for choosing not to pay taxes, or to refuse military conscription or jury duty.

The point here is not about changing what we do, it's about thinking, about awareness, and about choosing. Become AWARE of the cultural norms that pervade our lives. THINK about the alternatives. CHOOSE, based on free-will.

Usually, our free-will choice will be to do exactly the same as our parents, and our family, and our neighbors. Great! Choosing to drive on the same side of the roadway as our neighbors is going to prevent a great deal of conflict.

Surprisingly often though, starting to question our cultural norms will open new vistas for us. Maybe something as simple as a Northerner discovering they love okra and gumbo. Maybe something as life-altering as the revelation of preferring not to become a parent, or that one's preferred home is a boat or an RV rather than a fixed location.

As an aside about cultural rigidity, as an American citizen, you are REQUIRED to be a resident of one of the 50 states and to have a fixed address. Legally, you can't "live" on a boat or in an RV, although millions do, and arbitrarily choose a state and drop box as their legal address. Question: "Why does one have to be a legal resident of one of the 50 states rather than just a resident of the United States as a whole?" Answer: "Huh?" Cultural norms change very slowly.
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