August 4, 2022
“The thing that is really hard, and really amazing, is giving up on being perfect and beginning the work of becoming yourself.”
Reprint fo Ray’s Daily first published on August 4, 2004
The other day I spent a few hours with others of my generation in a workshop led by an excellent facilitator. The subject was Time for What Matters. It was obvious from the discussion that too many of us spend most, if not all of our time, doing things we think we must do, allowing little time for what we would like to do. It seems like our lives become cluttered with one thing after another that eat up our days, weeks, months and even years. We think we have to do what we always have done, we believe that we must always say yes when someone wants us to do something, we think we must have the biggest garden and the most beautiful Christmas decorations. We feel we must attend every one of our grandchildren’s sporting events, we feel that we must cook for the church super, that we must read every magazine we get, and that we must never miss an episode of a favorite TV series; the list goes on and on and on. We do lots of things that are OK but few things that really give us joy. If we just stop and think about it we discover we seldom get to do some of the things we would love to do because we have convinced ourselves that there is not time enough to do them.
As we age we have less time to finally do that one thing that we have always wanted to do. I think the worst form of procrastination is when we put off taking care of ourselves. It is perfectly alright to do what we would like to do, it is perfectly alright to reward ourselves, and it is perfectly all right to stop doing something that stands in our way of doing what we want to do. You know, if you miss that one game, skip that one magazine, keep a garden that requires less of your time, the world does not end. It is worthwhile to ask yourself every chance you get, if what you are doing is really that important and if you did not do it, who would it hurt.
Why not pick one or two things right now that you would like to do. If you are going to procrastinate, delay or cancel something else, not something that will give you satisfaction. I have always felt that the best time to take a vacation was when you can’t, that is when you need to be recharged the most. It is the same with everything else, the best time to do for ourselves is now, it is up to us to eliminate what keeps us from enjoying the rest of our lives.
The next time I hear from you I would love to hear that things are great and not just ok.
I have enjoyed greatly the second blooming that comes when you finish the life of the emotions and of personal relations; and suddenly find – at the age of fifty, say – that a whole new life has opened before you, filled with things you can think about, study, or read about…It is as if a fresh sap of ideas and thoughts was rising in you.
She said: My five-year-old nephew Elix wanted to caddy for my brother’s golf game.
“You have to count my strokes,” my brother told him. “How much is six, nine, and eight?”
“Five,” answered Elix.
“Okay,” my brother smiled. “Let’s go!”
Warning: Dates in Calendar are closer than they appear.
You’re Old When …”
1. You can live without sex but not without your glasses.
2. You quit trying to hold in your stomach, no matter who walks into the room.
3. You enjoy watching the news.
4. The phone rings and you hope its not for you.
5. The only reason you’re still awake at 4 am is indigestion.
6. You’re proud of your lawn mower.
7. You start singing along with the elevator music.
8. You really do want a new washing machine for your birthday.
9. You routinely check the oil in your car.
10. You’ve owned clothes so long that they’ve come back into style –TWICE.
11. You no longer think of speed limits as a challenge.
12. You consider coffee one of the most important things in life.
13. 8 AM is your idea of “sleeping in.”
14. You write thank you notes without being told.
15. Neighbors borrow your tools.
16. You answer a question with, “Because I said so!”
17. Others ask for your recipes.
18. You start Christmas shopping in August.
19. You paint walls for a reason other than getting your deposit back.
20. You don’t like to drive after dark.
21. You say the words, “Turn that music down!” too often
22. You point out what buildings used to be where.
23. You know all the warning signs of a heart attack.
24. You rake the yard without being told to.
25. You can’t remember the last time you lay on the floor to watch television.
26. The service station attendant lets you pump your gas before paying
“A cynic is a man who, when he smells flowers, looks around for a coffin.”
H. L. Mencken
Two men were talking. “My son asked me what I did during the Sexual Revolution,” said one.
I told him I was captured early and spent the duration doing the dishes.
My mom is very possessive. She calls me up and says, “You weren’t home last night. Is something going on?”
I say, “Yeah, Mom. I’m cheating on you with another mother.”
“The future you shall know when it has come; before then forget it.”
She said: A man called the government office where I work and requested an estimate of his benefits upon retirement.
After I gave him the information, he went on to inquire about his wife’s benefits. I asked if she had ever worked.
“She has worked all her life making me happy,” he replied.
That was nice, I commented, but had she ever contributed to a pension plan?
“No,” he said. “We made an agreement when we got married. I would make the living and she would make the living worthwhile.”
My wife left me a note saying I should try out for “American Idle.”
But the joke is on her because she spelled it wr– hey, wait a minute!
Mrs. Rosen is having her house painted, and her husband comes home from work and leans against the freshly painted wall.
The next day, she says to the painter, “You want to see where my husband put his hand last night?”
He sighs and says, “Look, lady, I got a tough day’s work ahead of me. Why don’t you just make us a cup of tea?”
By the time we realize our parents were right, we have children who think we’re wrong.
Determined to cut the budget, the former governor directed that all government jobs remain unfilled once vacated.
There were many complaints, one concerning the retirement of a drawbridge operator. When Personnel refused to fill the position, the highway- division manager called the governor’s office.
“Ask the governor,” he told an aide, “Whether he wants the bridge left down so the cars can go over – or up so the ships can go through.”
Know the true value of time; snatch, seize, and enjoy every moment of it.
No idleness; no laziness; no procrastination; never put off till tomorrow what you can do today.
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