On the surface I seem fine but I am just like you, dealing with the challenges that come my way.
Life can be one struggle after another and you can begin to wonder why you bother.
Do you ever feel that you invest too much time and energy in people and activities where your efforts are unrecognised and, perhaps worse, taken for granted?
I don’t seek praise or validation but I do need to learn where best to focus my efforts.
In a bid to maximise my time and bring more positivity, I have been searching for inspiration online.
TED talks are consistently life affirming and there’s nothing better than pouring a glass of wine and settling down to catch a few of these talks on Netflix or YouTube.
One of the talks recently was about changing your perspective and refocusing by finding and acknowledging the positives, whilst letting go and not dwelling on the negatives.
So, in a bid to reprogram my mind, I will take the 21 Day Challenge. Apparantly, after 21 Days, this thinking will become automatic.
This is not to say that I’m a negative person, far from it, but I am like anyone else; when faced with a solid, constant barrage of challenges, I get exhausted and feel my motivation begin to drop.
So, here is what I will do:
Acknowledge and write down 3 reasons to be grateful – 21 Days
1 email or message of gratitude – 21Days
In addition, I will continue to watch TED Talks, spend time with people who Uplift me, focus on what is needed to move forward by assessing what it is I really need and prioritise positive thought over negative contemplation.
The great thing about this initiative is that even before writing down my first reason to be grateful, I am buzzing as I mentally begin to consider all the many wonderful people in my life.
Damn it, I have so much to be grateful for!
WILL YOU JOIN ME?
HERE’S THE FACEBOOK PAGE:
The only real purpose to any life is the commitment one shows to helping others; to nurturing and supporting those who need it most.
Maya Angelou said something about that…I’ll misquote her but the point she made was that people will forget what you said and what you did, but they won’t forget how you made them feel.
It is vital that we validate and celebrate those whom we encounter, whether friends and relatives or passing acquaintances, because we have no idea just how important that validation may be to that individual.
Never doubt that we all struggle, in one way or another, and we could all benefit from a little more compassion and a gentle acknowledgement that we are not entirely alone.
Many of us silently struggle with challenges and many feel an overwhelming sense of loneliness and isolation. Many go through extended periods of self-doubt and battle with feelings of hopelessness.
Be the one to smile and put your own struggle aside, for a moment, for 20 seconds then 20 more; listen and really hear the answer to your question, “How are you?”
You’ll be surprised how differently you hear the answer when you truly listen and you’ll be amazed at how much better you feel about your own struggles when you actively practice empathy.
Do we have a deal? Maybe you already do this. Maybe you, like me, need a little reminder to do it a little more.
So, let’s set the world on fire with love and compassion. Positively participate in your life and the lives of those around you.
As I like to remind myself – we are not humans having a spiritual experience but rather spiritual beings having a human experience and that experience involves, perhaps demands, challenges and physical, mental and/or emotional struggles.
So, give yourself a break, give those around you a break and be kind, rather than blind to the hidden battles and battle scars of those around.
Start with YOU
DAVID E WATTERS, is a teacher, motivational speaker and writer; a passionate equality advocate, committed to enhancing the lives of young people and adults who may feel marginalised or limited by labels.
He is director of NBI Associates, an inclusion-focussed specialist training company with a reputation for providing organisations with the tools to achieve meaningful and lasting cultural change.
He is currently completing his book NEVER BLEND IN, an accessible and powerful toolkit for living unlimited; candid stories and wise words which encourage, inspire, uplift and give hope to those who need it most, those who may feel disenfranchised or who may lack self-belief.
This ground-breaking, vital book of exclusive celebrity and deeply personal non-celebrity testimonies is aimed primarily at a young lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or questioning audience, but it is also of great value to educators, parents, family and mental health professionals seeking insight into the LGBTQ experience.
Role models from education, entertainment, law enforcement, medical and emergency services, politics, religion and sports have participated in this much needed discourse to illuminate the reader’s journey of self-discovery and to illustrate that living a life unlimited by labels will lead to personal, professional and spiritual fulfilment.
As a teacher, he is committed to developing the whole person through creatively challenging students to embrace their unique value, and that of others, to encourage them to fulfill their full potential. He is nominated for an Excellence in Diversity Award 2015, for his contribution to enhancing the diversity agenda within education. He has coordinated an annual Pro-Equality Festival since becoming a full-time teacher and, as a Diversity Coordinator, he has devised and delivered cultural change initiatives for staff and students which focus on creating an inclusive and cohesive learning community.
Since graduating from The Institute of Education, University of London, David has gone on to train as a mediator, and is a qualified facilitator for The Pacific Institute.
Watters is also the founder and coordinator of the inclusive, inspirational and international Give ‘em Hope Campaign; an online initiative which utilises all available social networks to encourage and uplift those who doubt their validity, feel isolated or limited by labels, through the sharing of written and video testimonies. The campaign was honoured at the National Diversity Awards 2014 when it won the Community Organisation Award (Multi-Strand).
Watters was a key player in the Equal Love Campaign UK; taking the British Government to the European Court of Human Rights in 2010 and successfully achieving MARRIAGE Equality for same-sex couples in the United Kingdom.
His passion and expertise has brought many opportunities to write and speak on social change and his book, NEVER BLEND IN, brings together this wealth of experience and the voices of those whom he has met along the way.
“Within both Academic and Corporate settings, my greatest passion has been to support and nurture all colleagues and learners through the development of innovative inclusion strategies utilising differentiated methods within planning, delivery and assessment and through the development, delivery and implementation of agreed cultural enhancement objectives.
Prior to my current role at EHS, I was Course Leader for Music Performance (Department Graded as OUTSTANDING by Ofsted in 2014) and Diversity Coordinator within Further Education, delivering staff CPD on the Equality Act 2010 to Academic and Business staff. Freelance, I have delivered similar training in a workshop setting or as a speaker and have a reputation for providing academic and corporate organisations with the tools to achieve meaningful and lasting cultural change.
Additionally, I am currently promoting the inclusive and internationally acclaimed Give ’em Hope Campaign (http://www.nbiassociates.co.uk/Give–em-Hope-Campaign.html) which was designed to encourage and uplift those who may feel limited by labels. As a motivational speaker, I have shared a platform with Stuart Milk and Peter Tatchell, have spoken on Achieving Authenticity at London Metropolitan Archives, on Living Unlimited at the LGBTQGA, and, as a supporter of 17-24-30, I have spoken at NO TO HATE in Trafalgar Square, London.
A background in arts and education, combined with a solid understanding of Equality Legislation and Cognitive Behavioural Strategies, enhance every aspect of my work as an educator and educational manager.”
Here’s where to leave your words of support for my NDA nomination: