Thoughts on #Election2016, American Competitiveness and Handling Hate in 2016 and Beyond

“We’re number 1!”

“We’re the best country in the world!”

“Come up against us and we’ll crush you!”

“Second place is the first loser!”

“Winning isn’t everything, it’s the ONLY thing.”

This is the narrative that America has been running on for the past 50 years or so. It probably started soon after the atomic bomb was dropped on Hiroshima, ending World War II. We got the idea that we were superior to others in the world; that we were the #1 country.

This idea of superiority and spirit of competitiveness has also become common between fellow Americans, to the point where now we are again a nation divided right down the middle. I have seen so many angry, hateful and competitive comments coming from people who feel that they have “won” the 2016 election. Some of those who feel that they “lost,” are also angry, though to a less venomous degree, about what has transpired. The obsession with competition has gotten so bad that now people are willing to accept anyone or anything just to be able to say that they “won” a fleeting victory.

I have some news for both sides: we ALL lost this election because we’ve lost our moral compass as a country. This election has shown that an overwhelming number of people are willing to do ANYthing to “win” — even if it means potentially throwing our future into the trash.

This intense competitive spirit has now trickled down to day to day interactions. There have been a number of cases of people being bold and outright with their racism and hatred toward others in public. There are stories of kids and adults bragging and taunting other people who they feel “lost” the election.

Some people have suggested that we should just laugh at and ignore these people, but I tend to disagree.

People ignored Hitler and the hateful propaganda his regime was spreading too. They probably thought it was all just something that would fade away with time. That was right up until the day when the first trucks rolled up to take people away from their homes.

Unfortunately, simply ignoring a problem doesn’t make it go away. There’s a quote that roughly says “evil prevails when good men/women do nothing.” This has been true in the past and it is true now.

I don’t think that we should ignore hate and ignorance when it arises in our personal lives. I think we are responsible for questioning it, boldly and unapologetically. Calmly ask the offending person questions, like:

Why do you feel it is acceptable and okay to make that kind of statement?

Where did you learn that from?

Who taught you that?

How would you feel if someone said/did that to your mother/sister/daughter/loved one?

Questions have a way of holding people accountable. They have to face the woman/man in the mirror if only for a moment. You don’t even have to respond to their response if it is very ignorant. Just look at them, listen, respectfully disagree and end the conversation. Don’t laugh or joke it away with them. And don’t ever argue with a foolish person because as they say, “then no one will know who’s who.” But if you feel that a calm discussion would be possible and have merit, keep the conversation going.

At the time of this post, Thanksgiving is less than a week away, so surely you will have a chance to practice if you have family members who think that it’s okay to bully, taunt and openly hate people. You may have sat by quietly as they spouted hate at the table where you eat before, but no more. Not this year. Hold them accountable for their hateful and ignorant comments by asking thoughtful but respectful questions:

When our family first emigrated here, do you think it was fair that people treated them the way that you’re treating ___(fill in the blank)____?

If God/Jesus were sitting here, what would God/Jesus say about the comment you just made?

Why do you feel that your way is the only acceptable way to live?

Why does it seem like you’re in competition with others who have a different race/gender/sexual preference/income/etc?

What bothers you so much about people who are different from you?

It doesn’t matter if you get through to that person — remember, this isn’t a competition. You don’t have to “win.” The point here is that you made a stance against hate and ignorance. I think this is what we need more of in America and the world at this questionable time.

Love Lynn

Advertisements

How to Stop Complaining & Start Thriving

Do you complain too much? What do you complain about? Here’s a little tough love from Lynn

I used to be a major complainer. I would spend much of my time writing and sending complaint letters to companies who I felt wronged me. It didn’t matter if it was a fast food worker who didn’t get my order quite right or forgot to give me ketchup — I would probably take the time out to write a letter.

I was also a silent complainer. I held my pity parties all alone and in my head:

“No one is ever there for me.”

“No one cares about me.”

“I can’t trust anybody.”

Over time, I learned a hard lesson. In most cases, no one really gives a care about your complaints. They are focused on what is going on in their own worlds. Think about it — do you care much about the complaints of others? Or do you just find them annoying?

If you open your eyes and your mind, removing the tendency to complain about what’s going wrong in your world, you’ll probably see that you have some pretty great things going RIGHT.

You have privileges, talents and benefits that others don’t have, but if you spend all of your time focusing on the negative you’ll never get a chance to see them.

So here comes the tough love that you may find difficult to accept. Everything that you experience in this life as an adult is your own fault and you always have the option to “opt out” of experiencing negative consequences.

You don’t like how a fast food worker talked to you? They get paid minimum wage and most don’t like their jobs, so if you want pristine treatment maybe you shouldn’t be going to a fast food restaurant. Cook healthy food at home instead.

You hate your job? Quit it and try something else that you love to do. It might not make you as much money and you might have to sleep on a few couches along the way, but guess what? You no longer have that job to complain about!

You’re tired of being treated like a disposable woman by men? Don’t allow them to sneeze all over you and then toss you away without a second thought anymore. That’s 100% in your control, just say NO.

There’s value in making your voice heard on certain issues, because if we never spoke up about problems in society, change wouldn’t happen. But there’s a difference between complaining and voicing your opinion — in the former case you’re just sending out negativity (venting) but in the latter case you have a positive outcome in mind that can be universally beneficial. Know the difference.

If you want to #THRIVE, stop complaining about what’s wrong in your life, and start focusing more on positive solutions.

Love Lynn

 

Lynn Gilliard is a writer and transformational blogger. She is the author of a self-help guide entitled Survive, Live or Thrive? and a popular relationship guide entitled Let Him Chase YOU.

Drop the Hot Coal: Letting Go of Anger

There’s a popular quote that makes plenty of rounds in the self-development world that goes: “Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; you are the one who gets burned.” -Buddha

When I experienced an extremely difficult time in my life, I watched as everyone who I thought was a friend or loved one quickly drifted away. The one person who definitely would have been there was gone now, he had passed away onto the next plain.

I developed a lot of resentment and anger for the people who were still around, who I thought I could count on. I’d never gone through a time as trying as that and naively assumed someone would understand.

But this was no sitcom — this was real life, and in real life most people are pretty much doing their own thing.

Anger Thoughts
Over time this anger grew stronger and stronger, perpetuating and strengthening the depression I was suffering. I day dreamed about ways I could get them all back one day, how I would curse each of them out so bad if I ever saw them again and how I would make them feel like tiny ants that I could step on. I quietly seethed.

I was so consumed by that anger that I had no room for thoughts of prosperity or growth. I remained stuck in a holding pattern, unable to move forward with anything in my life.

Over that time I noticed a number of physical changes happening to me. It was weird. I gained weight in all the wrong places on my normally slim and trim body. My normally smooth and supple skin became blotchy. I developed allergies to things that I had never had a problem with before. Even my digestive system started acting up.

When you harbor inner anger, hatred and resentment toward others it really does only affect YOU. Only when you act on it does it hurt others, but it still comes back to hurt YOU. It might not burn your hand as in the metaphor from Buddha, but it can hurt you in myriad other ways.

Drop it ‘Cause It’s Hot
When I finally FINALLY decided to drop that hot coal of anger that I was harboring toward certain people in my life, I felt such a wave of relief rush over me. I finally managed to put things into the proper perspective — they didn’t owe me anything, and I don’t owe them anything. Even though I would have been there for them in a trying time, they still don’t have any *obligation* to do the same for me. We all have free will to choose what we’re going to do for others. If you do find a friend or loved one who holds you down in a time of trouble, you have a really good thing. Please make sure you do the same for them.

It’s not a surprise that my peculiar conditions slowly began to clear up soon after I “dropped the hot coal.” I felt light-footed/hearted and things began to progress in my life. My businesses regained momentum and I started to see the beauty in going outside on a sunny day again.

Can You Relate?
Are you holding onto a metaphorical “hot coal” of anger toward someone in your life? Maybe an ex-boyfriend, a family member or a friend from the past?

How does holding onto this anger benefit you in the short and long run? Is it really hurting the other person?

Contemplate these questions and I sincerely pray that you can one day find the strength to let go of that anger and move forward with your life. Anger is a poison and it needs to be eliminated as soon as possible.

Remember: you are the only one who is responsible for your own happiness in life. Claim it!

Love Lynn

Lynn Gilliard is a writer and transformational blogger. She is the author of a self-help guide entitled Survive, Live or Thrive? and a popular relationship guide entitled Let Him Chase YOU.

Limiting Vs. Empowering Beliefs

In my book Survive, Live or Thrive I talk about limiting beliefs and how they are the culprits behind why we did not succeed or achieve what we want to in life.

Limiting beliefs are planted in our minds by cultural influences, the media and the people in our lives who say that they love us. These beliefs, that you accept for yourself, BECOME YOUR LIFE. Stuff doesn’t just happen to you — you are a willing participant, whether it’s good or bad. Your thoughts and beliefs affect the decisions you make, the steps you take and what you accept from others.

Bottomline, if you aren’t pleased with the way your life is going it is because you have allowed limiting beliefs to infiltrate your life for way too long.

Here is a list of common limiting beliefs that plaque women. Raise your hand if you can relate to one or more:

– I’m not smart enough to start my own business or get a better job
– I can never get healthy because bad health runs in my family
– I’m not pretty enough to deserve a good man
– I can’t find anyone better so I have to stay in this toxic relationship
– no man would ever want me as his girlfriend, all that I’m good for is sex and being a FWB
– I can never get anywhere in life because of my race or color
– My hair isn’t long enough, straight enough, blond enough, perfect enough, etc to be considered beautiful
– I’ve already lived the best days of my life, it’s all down hill from here
– I’m too old to start over
– I’m too young to be successful and make money
– I don’t deserve respect from the world (walk all over me)
– I didn’t have a father / mother in my life so I’m worthless and not meant to have a good life
– I was born poor so I’ll probably die poor (only chance is winning the lottery)
– God / the Universe is against me, so good things can’t happen to me
– I’m unlucky; all I have is bad luck
– I’m destined to fail, why even try? Why am I even here?

The list goes on and on doesn’t it? Our brains can be like toxic waste dumps.

What I’d like you to do starting today is to slowly replace some of these limiting beliefs (the messages that you’re repeating to yourself every day) with empowering thoughts and beliefs. Here are a few examples:

– the way I look and act is unique and special
– God made me, and He doesn’t make any mistakes, so I must be beautiful
– I’m alive and kicking, so I am still important to this world and have a purpose here
– I love and am loved, therefore I am a divine and significant part of this universe
– someone else’s opinion of me doesn’t have to become my reality
– I matter and I deserve respect; anyone who doesn’t agree doesn’t deserve to be in my life
– I deserve and am worthy of love overflowing
– Good things and people are attracted to me all the time — good things happening to me are the NORM

Even if you don’t fully believe these statements yet, there is POWER in saying them. Say them no matter how low you feel, no matter how bad you feel your day is going. Watch how things start to suddenly change after a week, two weeks, a month as you replace those limiting beliefs and thoughts with empowering ones.

I promise you love, no one can change your life but you — not a man, not a family member, not a friend… it’s all about YOU.

Love Lynn


Lynn Gilliard is a writer and transformational blogger. She is the author of a self-help guide entitled Survive, Live or Thrive? and a popular relationship guide entitled Let Him Chase YOU.

Question: How Do You Break Free from Mental Slavery?

As I write this blog post, I’m feeling a bit “down” and have been for a couple of weeks after yet again losing someone very near and dear to me. But even in the midst of a temporary mental fog, I can still see the truth very clearly.

Today I wrote the following post on my Twitter account — the thought just came to me out of the blue.

“@LoveLynnGee: The chains of mental slavery are the most difficult to break free from #LoveLynn”

One of my followers must be on the same frequency because she responded right back asking: how do you break free from mental chains? I decided to write a blog post about this because it’s a message I need to hear myself at the moment.

Let’s start here: “The definition of insanity (a form of mental bondage) is doing the same thing over and over again while expecting a different result.” – unknown

Oftentimes we stay mentally imprisoned by a counterproductive routine or action. We’re stuck doing, saying or thinking something that we’ve been doing saying and thinking every day for the majority of our lives.

If that action or thought process isn’t effecting positive change in our lives, we have to do something else. But many of us choose to stay chained to those same routines because it’s “comfortable” or because we’re afraid of what could happen if we step outside of it.

So I believe this is one key to breaking free from mental slavery — being brave enough to step outside of a comfort zone and try something COMPLETELY new.

The next is this: “Love is what we were born with. Fear is what we learned here.” – Marianne Williamson

Fear is possibly the most negative emotion that someone can have. Living in fear is what keeps many of us in mental chains for the whole time we’re here.

As the quote from Marianne Williamson says, we learn fear from other scared people. It’s not a natural emotion.

Where did you learn to be afraid? I learned it from family members, teachers and peers who meant well and only wanted to keep me safe. They may have been afraid of losing me. But they were slowly helping me into mental chains strengthened by fear. You become afraid to act, think or even feel as time goes on. As I mentioned early, you’re afraid to step out and do something different.

Fear inspires us to make irrational, rushed choices and actions that can alter the entire course of our lives. It erases logic. So I would also say that another key to breaking free from mental slavery is to conquer fear. Stare it in the face and do it anyway.

And then there’s this: “Holding on to anger is like grasping a hot coal with the intent of throwing it at someone else; you are the one who gets burned.” – Buddha

Many of us are stuck in mental slavery because we’re really angry at someone or something. We feel slighted by a person, a circumstance or even the Universe / God for not being fair to us. We feel that someone or something has FAILED us in life.

When we hold onto anger it eats us up from the inside out until it has taken complete control over our lives.

It’s hard as hell, but we have to come to a place of genuine forgiveness in our hearts for people who we feel have wronged us. You have to come to a place where you accept the fact that as an adult no one is obligated to you BUT you. We design and create our lives. We alone decide if we’re going to remain chained to a negative mentality.

There may be other solutions, but I believe that these three are the keys to breaking free from mental slavery. As they say in rehab programs, the first step to getting free is admitting that there’s a problem in the first place.

Love Lynn

Lynn Gilliard is a writer and transformational blogger. She is the author of a self-help guide entitled Survive, Live or Thrive? and a popular relationship guide entitled Let Him Chase YOU.

New Book: Survive, Live or Thrive? by L. Lynn Gilliard

New Book:

Survive, Live or Thrive?

by L. Lynn Gilliard

 

Simple Life Tips for Those Who Feel Stuck in a Rut

This is a guide for those who feel that they may be stuck in a rut in one or more areas of their life, including:

– pursuing your dreams
– making good money
– dating and love relationships
– family relationships
– self-love

Though the book is specifically targeted for women who are experiencing challenges in their lives, the concepts apply to everyone. Fueled by the idea that life is meant to be easy and enjoyable, it is loaded with stories, blog posts from Lynn’s websites and other inspirations and thoughts to help propel you to the ultimate goal: THRIVING in every area of your life.

Get the Amazon Paperback Here

 

Audio version – Coming soon

The Negative Voices Around You: The Other Shore: The Diana Nyad Story

I finally had a chance to watch The Other Shore: The Diana Nyad Story documentary. She is the lady who planned a swim from Cuba to Florida. This documentary was a perfect example of how the negative people around you can hold you back from accomplishing things in life.

Diana’s partner was negative about her swim from start to finish. She told Diana she couldn’t do it before, during and after her historic attempts to swim from Cuba to Florida.

In some cases people will discourage you because of their own personal fears.

In other cases it’s jealousy and insecurity because they don’t have the guts to accomplish anything real in life.

In the case of the documentary I watched about the Diana Nyad story, I believe her partner was just really frightened about losing her loved one. And that is understandable.

But regardless of her motivations, it’s still a problem when you have a demotivating person in your life who is constantly telling you that you can’t do something.

They can’t see what you see — all that they can see is the circumstances right in front of them. They can’t dream like you — yet.

Sometimes that negative person’s will and energy is so strong that they can interrupt, intercept or delay your goals. In Diana’s case, what she needed was a BOOST when she hit those milestones. All that she got was fear, doubt and negativity from her peers.

Diana Nyad’s case was extreme because her life was in danger for her dreams. But for most of us, our dreams are attainable without having to risk our lives. Yet some of us still don’t take the chance because we have negative people around us telling us that we can’t. We’re scared of social disapproval and people saying “I told you so.” We care too much about the opinions of other people when it comes to our dreams and goals.

So who do you have in YOUR life that is holding you back from your ultimate accomplishment? You may find that removing that voice from your life might be the one way to open a road toward meeting or achieving your long time goal — and it could happen more quickly than you ever imagined.

Love Lynn

Lynn Gilliard is a writer, transformational blogger and author of a popular relationship guide entitled Let Him Chase YOU.