Thursday, 8 January 2015

What gets you through the day?

I was reading Starr Sackstein's blog this morning in admiration. She speaks of quotes that help her get through the day and I have often heard of others who have some kind of mantra or 'hero' who help us keep our heads above water. It made me feel unusual in that I have few such crutches to help me get through the day other than my religion. I do have some quotes that I will share with you as they may help in some measure.

Charles Dickens

Charles Dickens is one of my personal heroes. He was not from a privileged background, his father was often in debtors prison and Charles wrote to help make money to clear his father's debts. Dickens was criticised for his grammatical errors and yet his stories live on almost 200 years later. He seems to have had quite a caustic wit and I reproduce some of his quotes.

Accidents will occur in the best regulated families. 

Minds, like bodies, will often fall into a pimpled, ill-conditioned state from mere excess of comfort.

No one is useless in this world who lightens the burdens of another.

When you consider the modern world these are very appropriate tenets.

In my upbringing I was often warned against the vagaries of people by my parents and so have never been one for worshipping idols - 'they have feet of clay'. Hence the lack of personal heroes. However, there are a couple of biblical stories that I find supportive.

I find this prayer, attributed to St Francis, to be so freeing when fraught situations arise between people. It is true that sometimes you cannot 'win' if you like and so shrug your shoulders and walk away.

The 'Footsteps' story is similarly supportive when depression has struck in the past. I include the final section.

"Lord, you said once I decided to follow you,
You'd walk with me all the way.
But I noticed that during the saddest and most troublesome times of my life,
there was only one set of footprints.
I don't understand why, when I needed You the most, You would leave me."
He whispered, "My precious child, I love you and will never leave you
Never, ever, during your trials and testings.
When you saw only one set of footprints,
It was then that I carried you."

Starr Sackstein

Starr Sackstein produces some other interesting quotes,

“Be yourself, everyone else is already taken.” – Oscar Wilde 

“It requires less character to discover the faults in others than does it to tolerate them.” – J.Petit Senn

"Anyone who has never made a mistake has never tried anything new." - Albert Einstein

There are many more on Starr's website.

Finding the quotes, people, passages or arts that support you is a valuable exercise in self-reflection.

God Bless