Respect

It is often said that the Greatest Generation was great because they went through The Great Depression and World War II. Their greatness, however, comes from something deeper. Individuals and society overall embodied characteristics at the core that led to greatness. In this article, we will discuss the quality of respect.

 

What Is Respect?

 

Respect can be defined as giving regard or having a feeling of deep admiration. In this context, the focus is on giving regard to people, places, and things.

 

When it comes to respect, my dad, a member of the Greatest Generation, has always led by example. Never in my too many years to mention, have I seen my dad be disrespectful to anyone or anything. He has always treated people the way that he would want to be treated no matter how alike or different they were from him. Likewise, he has always treated things the way he would want his things treated.

 

This behavior was born, in part, of a culture and in part from his family’s values. When you grow up in a large family like my dad did, you learn about diversity of thought and behavior. You learn to embrace differences and treat everyone with respect.

 

The Greatest Generation

 

Respect, as shown by the Greatest Generation, showed up in nearly every aspect of life. For instance, at school, children were expected to be respectful to the teacher. If they weren’t, it was almost a guarantee that their parents were going to take the teacher’s side in the matter. You just didn’t treat a teacher poorly even if they were only a couple of years older than you.

 

Likewise, people treated their neighbors, as they would want to be treated. If they were a different religion, spoke a different language, or had a different political affiliation, they still got help when they needed it. Similarly, one family would never consider ripping down the political banner on a neighbor’s house.

 

The focus on respect also meant that people respected the country, the military, government officials, the flag, the national anthem, and other symbols of America. It wasn’t that one side or the other was more patriotic. It was that everyone was patriotic. It was part of being an American.

 

Similarly, respect was prevalent in the business world. A handshake or someone’s word was as good as a written contract. Holding each other in high regard led to loyalty between employers and employees. People were loyal to companies and in turn often had jobs for life.

 

Respect affected many other aspects of life, such as, dating, marriage, religious worship, the police, and more. However, there were gaps in respect by some people. For instance, some people did not show African Americans the respect they deserved. Thus, it wasn’t perfect, but overall there was a high level of respect.

 

Lack of Respect

 

Since the 1950s, the amount of respect shown by people has been steadily decreasing. Various cultural shifts and changes within families led to this decline. Today, the amount of disrespect for people and property has skyrocketed to unbelievable heights.

 

Today, a significant number of people are not considerate of other people or their property. The on-going riots and looting are simply an act of disrespect. We can argue the reasons that they are occurring, but the fact is that people that hold respect as a value do not behave in this manner.

 

Likewise, so many people show disrespect to our country, our military, and our history. Although these are more extreme examples, respect is lacking in many other ways. Students and parents no longer show the same level of respect for teachers. Additionally, many businesses don’t have any loyalty or respect for their employees.

 

The Lesson

 

The world today has a respect problem. In many cases, people want or demand respect, but they don’t give it to others. It is unclear why anyone feels that they should be able to demand consideration and thoughtfulness from others while at the same time showing disrespect. This is a concept that is foreign to me.

 

When Aretha Franklin sang, “R-E-S-P-E-C-T! Find out what it means to me,” she was stating that the man in the song needed to understand what it means to respect the woman in the song. Now, you might not always be able to ask each person in each situation what respect means to them. However, you can define what respect means to you. Once you know what respect means to you, conduct yourself toward people, places, and things in a way that is consistent with that definition – or better!

 

Remember to get respect, one must act respectful!

 

The Salem Witch Trials

I have always been fascinated by the Salem Witch Trials. The belief that witchcraft was behind unexplained fits of young girls resulted in accusations of witchcraft being thrown in every direction is quite intriguing. I would love to know what “caused” those symptoms the girls displayed. The bigger question, however, is . . . Why did accusations of witchery become popular in 1692?

 

The Salem Witch Trials of 1692

 

Looking back at what is known about the beginning of the Salem Witch Trials, we find young girls behaving in an unusual manner. Not knowing what caused the behavior, it was believed that the girls were possessed by the devil. They then accused three women of being witches and bringing this upon them. Thus, the first case of witchery came to trial.

 

Oddly, there were other girls that soon exhibited the same symptoms. Hence more cases. Still, more and more accusations abounded in Salem and other areas more distant. By May of that year, there were so many cases that a special court was appointed to handle them.

 

Even upstanding members of the community were accused and found guilty of being witches. Rebecca Nurse, a possible distant relative of mine, was one of those people. In her case, they found her not guilty, then guilty, then she received a reprieve, and finally she was hung. She was 71 and was supported by a large number of people in the community. Yet, it didn’t save her.

 

In most cases, however, men and women were found guilty based solely on the accusation. None of them were allowed to have lawyers and had a difficult time defending themselves. Have you ever tried proving that you aren’t a witch?

 

The question was . . . Why were so many people so willing to believe that members of the community were witches? Speculation includes that the people funneled their fear of outsiders and other fears into the witchcraft hysteria.

 

The hysteria quickly wound down and dissipated in 1693. Many of the convicted witches were later fully exonerated. Unfortunately, it was too late for those who were hung or died in prison.

 

McCarthyism

 

In 1953, Arthur Miller brought the Salem Witch Trials to life in his play “The Crucible.” He was driven to write the play because of current events. At the time, Senator Joseph McCarthy used “witch hunts” in the name of stopping the spread of communism.

 

McCarthy was a fearmonger, constantly stirring the fear of Communism, which was very pervasive in the 1950s. The fear was so strong that many people were accused of being communist or communist sympathizers. Many of them lost their jobs or were blacklisted despite not belonging to the Communist Party. Others were afraid to object for fear that they, too, would be given the badge of communist.

 

Those accused were investigated or questioned before panels. Like the Salem Witch Trials, accusations were often accepted even when there was a lack of evidence. Likewise, the risk the person posed to the country was often elevated. Still, the damage was done although many decisions would later be reversed or determined to be illegal.

 

Repeating The Past

 

It is 2020 and despite the 5th and 14th amendments to the Constitution guaranteeing due process we are again repeating the Salem Witch Trials. The witch trials have been modernized, but they still have the same principle of guilt by accusation.

 

In today’s world, you aren’t likely to be hung after an unfair trial where you have to defend yourself. Instead you are “cancelled” by a decision of the Internet mob. In cancel culture, you aren’t given a chance to defend yourself at all. The Internet mob decides what is right and what is wrong. You can be found guilty by association. Worse yet, you can be found guilty for not publicly taking a stance on an issue at all.

 

It seems that like in 1692, fear has driven the world a bit mad. Today it isn’t a fear of witches or communism that is behind the accusations. Yet, it remains a fear based on people being different and having different perspectives.

 

The Tech Giants and the mob rule simply do not allow for free thought and conversation. They have decided to take the law into their own hands and change all the rules. One and only one opinion is allowed in the social media court. Wish to explain yourself or even to apologize and you just may find yourself banned from the platform.

 

If you think it is only people with extremist viewpoints that are banned, I suggest you do more research. Like Rebecca Nurse, who was an upstanding citizen respected by many, you may be accused if you don’t parrot “the stance” perfectly.

 

What We Can Learn?

 

So, what can we learn from our current situation? First, history does repeat itself unless you learn from it. Clearly, we have not yet learned this lesson.

 

Second, there are many dimensions to being different. Anytime someone is condemned simply because they are different it is wrong.

 

Third, judging without a fair trial or worse without any facts is a disgrace. And, it means that a majority of the time you will be wrong.

 

And, fourth, fear can drive people to act a little crazy. As discussed in our recent article “Why Fear,” Franklin D. Roosevelt was correct when he said, “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.”

 

The bottom line is that we need to learn to accept people who are different – no matter what that difference may be. They may look different, act different, express their feelings in a different way, have different religious beliefs, have different political beliefs, raise their family in a different way, etc.

 

This sentiment was echoed on a Little House on the Prairie rerun as I was writing this article. Laura was pleading with the people of Walnut Grove to stop a woman who was considered odd from leaving town. Laura said, “So what if she was different? We’re all different!”

 

skip the fear

Fear never leads to a feeling of peace.  Thus, instead of allowing fear to permeate your life, skip the fear and connect to peace.  In many ways choosing peace is choosing love. Without love we are guaranteed to have no peace.

 

Yet, every day people choose negativity, hate, and anger. Although none of those leads to love or peace, they are a pattern in the world today. Even those who try to give them up, often struggle to keep their focus on love and peace. It is no wonder people struggle as there is so much negative hype in the news media and social media.

 

The Virus & The Media

 

The news media is working overtime with stories on the coronavirus. It is important to inform people about the dangers of this virus and provide updates on the steps that are being taken to combat it. However, often the tone of the stories, and headlines in particular, are alarming.

 

Rather than informing people and keeping people calm, the media and some public figures are actually creating hysteria. There is a big difference between being concerned and taking precautions versus buying 500 rolls of toilet paper and 30 cases of water that you won’t use in the next 3 months.

 

Don’t Panic

 

The first and most important thing you can do for your health is to take a deep breath and relax. Skip the fear given panic and worry will only diminish your quality of life. They are guaranteed NOT to help.

 

Realize that this too will pass. The panic of today will be replaced by sanity and understanding. Doctors and scientists are understanding more about this virus every day. Vaccinations are being developed. After all, although this is “new,” it is in a classification of viruses that are already known. So, it may have unique attributes, but it isn’t completely foreign to doctors.

 

Relax. Skip the fear. Life will go on. It just may not be quite as luxurious as it was a month ago, but it will go on.

 

Energetically Speaking

 

The energy of panic and worry only brings about more panic and worry. The energy that you transmit is the energy that you will draw to you. So, if you emit panic and worry, you will help the virus and the worry to grow for yourself and others.

 

Thus, if you desire peace, calm, and a time of little worry, peace and love are where you need to put your energy. By doing so, you will help the world heal and defeat this virus.

 

Actions You Can Take

 

What can you do? Practice good hygiene, make good decisions about where you go (assuming you have a choice), limit your news intake, ignore fake and exaggerated stories (verify stories and sources before posting on social media or sharing with friends), and be realistic. Do you really think you will use 500 rolls of toilet paper any time soon?

 

If you are exposed to the virus, self-quarantine and follow all the procedures that authorities provide. Even in this case, remain calm. Energetically cleanse yourself. And, keep a good attitude. Just because you may have been exposed, doesn’t mean you will get the virus. If you do get it, remember that a high percentage of the cases are mild (yes, you wouldn’t know that by listening to many of the news stories).

 

Right now the media is constantly beating the coronavirus drum. Remember that fear leads to good ratings and increased online clicks. So, they have an incentive for you to be afraid. Instead of falling into the negative energy of fear, stay calm. Look for the facts. Go to the CDC website and read about it yourself.

 

Rather than focusing your energy on the fear and negativity, focus your energy toward a healthy world. Keeping a laser focus on love, patience, and healing is a step toward feeling at peace!

 

Join us Thursday March 19 for a free online class on Energetic Tips for Staying Healthy.  Click here for more information.

 

Memory Triggers

 

 

Have you ever saw, smelled, or heard something that triggered a memory from a long time ago? I watched a movie the other night that included a scene about a high school student losing her grandmother. It reminded me of losing my grandmother when I was thirteen. I recalled the day after my grandmother’s funeral when I returned to school. A friend asked where I was the day before. I told him that I had attended my grandmother’s funeral. He insisted I was lying.

 

I found it odd that a friend would think that I lied about losing my grandmother. This is when I realized that not all people my age had lost loved ones. They were likely blessed with having their parents as well as all four of their grandparents living.

 

Death Was Familiar To Me

 

It was different for me. My father’s mother, who had just passed, was the last of my living grandparents. Plus, I had already lost my father seven years earlier. So, death was a familiar experience for me. It seemed, however, it was unfamiliar to my friend.  

 

The Right Trigger

 

This seemingly benign incident has stuck with me for many years. All it took was the right trigger for me to remember it.

 

It’s not uncommon for us to remember something from the past that would otherwise be long forgotten when a current event provides the right stimulus. Sometimes recollection of a memory results in a simple reaction of recognition. However, many times these recollections bring up emotions – both positive and negative. Sometimes, these “forgotten” memories are the source behind a person’s current day issues.

 

It is fascinating how our minds hold onto memories from so long ago and how they unconsciously can affect us today. Even memories that don’t have significance on the surface can have a lasting impact on our well-being long into the future.

 

Responding To Memories

 

As you experience past memories that may spontaneous arise, recognize them. If they are pleasant, welcome them. If they are negative, give yourself permission to release any negative emotions associated with that memory. Releasing guilt, fear, and other negative emotions can be a great healing experience. Don’t forget to be thankful for the experience and to forgive all involved, including yourself.

 

 

 

 

Everyday we ride an emotional roller coaster. We can leave work feeling great because we completed a major project or made a huge sale. The feeling of joy plunges when we become angry because another driver cut us off. Then we reach home and feel so loved when our 2-footed or 4-footed loved ones greet us.

 

The Highs and Lows

 

While riding the emotional roller coaster called life, we often recognize the highs and the lows, but may not think a lot about the physical reaction to these emotions. Like a roller coaster, the physical effects of these emotions can be transient. Our blood pressure increases when we are angry with other drivers. However, it soon returns to normal. In this case, the incident on the roadway results in little or no residual effect on our overall well-being.

 

In some cases, it lasts a bit longer. Stress headaches or muscle strains gained on the ride or that occur as a result of our emotions being jostled about last longer. Perhaps, we feel them for a few hours or a whole day.

 

Linger Affects

 

Sometimes, however, situations can have a lingering effect on us. For example, when we experience strong emotional trauma, such as the loss of a loved one, the emotion can be quite intense and linger with us for a long period of time. Initially, this trauma may or may not have any physical effects on us. Any initial physical effects are likely to be transient – headache, sleeplessness, etc. However, it is the accumulation of the emotion over time that holds the potential to have a greater impact on our health and wellbeing.

 

Underlying negative emotions that linger attack us day in and day out. Often this happens for a long period of time only to be followed by the discovery of a physical aliment. Many times people view this as an independent event and do not connect it to the emotion that they have been harboring. Others have a sudden “Ah ha!” moment and begin to wonder if there is a tie between the their emotion and the manifestation of the physical aliment.

 

Repetitive Emotions

 

Not all physical ailments that manifest from emotion come from traumatic events. People sometimes experience an emotion on a regular basis or hold on to an emotion. If this is a positive emotion, such as love, this is wonderful and very healthy. Unfortunately, it is often anger or another negative emotion. For example, politics, fueled by social media and media outlets, seems to put some people in a constant state of anger. That anger is unhealthy and needs to be released for the person’s own well-being.

 

Changing Our Reactions

 

We can start to change our reactions to negative emotions by being conscious of the connection between our emotions on our physical well-being. Recognition that we no longer need to be at the mercy of these emotions is the first step.

 

The second step is to choose to release our connection to negative emotions. We can begin that process by recognizing that the situation causing these emotions will pass. After all, do we really want to be emotionally invested in something that may physically harm us, This is especially true since the harm often comes after the issue has become less important or is no longer relevant. t

 

Once we make this choice, we can begin to release the emotion. However, releasing the connection to negative emotions is not easy. These negative emotions are the most intense emotions and they linger with us the longest. We also tend to rehash the negative emotions, which reinforces the recall of the situation and has a tendency to intensify the emotions.

 

It is important to see situations that lead to negative emotions for what they are. In some cases, they are traumatic and life changing. However, often we hold onto emotions related to events that aren’t life changing and aren’t really traumatic. We must consciously remind ourselves that it is acceptable and healthy to let go of these negative emotions.

 

Positive Memories Are Healthy

 

Human nature seems to be attuned to looking at the bad. It is a way of survival and seeking answers. Yet, looking for the good in situations or positive memories to replace the bad is very healthy. It isn’t always easy at first; however, it gets easier with practice. In the case of the loss of a loved one, it is far healthier to remember the good times – the laughter, the love – rather than focusing on the loss. By doing so we reinforce the positive emotions and we heal for our future well-being.

 

 

 

 

It is common to hear people say how important it is to let negative emotions go. But, most people are challenged to actually make it happen. They believe in the concept, but making it a reality is lots of work and requires a lot of determination and self-love.

 

Besides being generally happier, letting go of toxic relationships and emotions is good for a person’s long-term physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual health. Yet, people often harbor negative emotions regarding a person, company, or situation for days, weeks, months, and even years. If not released, negativity accumulates and strengthens. It can affect a person in many different ways including manifesting as physical ailments.

 

Now, what if you have harbored negative feelings about a person for years and you find that you are genetically related to that person? Learning of this connection can be devastating to people.

 

Consider the situation where there was a friend of the family that you just couldn’t stand being around when you were growing up. You couldn’t put your finger on it, but you just felt disgust toward this man. Over the years, you could never manage to let it go. Later, you find out that he was once your mother’s boyfriend and he is indeed your birth father instead of the man you call Dad.   Learning your birth father isn’t the person you thought is crushing. However, it is even more difficult when you find that your real birth father is someone you harbor negative feelings towards.

 

Alternately, you could have had a rough breakup. You haven’t been able to have a good relationship since the breakup. You can’t get over the pain of the relationship. The mere thought of your ex still makes your gut churn. Then, one day, you are doing genealogy and discover that your ex is actually a distant cousin. It is like a two by four just hit you, deepening your wound. Not only did this person leave you wounded, they are also related to you.

 

Perhaps even worse would be the discovery that you are genetically related to someone you have not forgiven for physical or mental harm they did to someone you love. You may have spent years being angry at this person for a serious crime like assault, rape, or murder. To find you are related to them feels as if your soul is being ripped out.

 

Learning of these connections can be challenging in the best of circumstances. However, being in a good place emotionally can definitely make the news of the connection easier. A new connection may never be uncovered between you and someone you harbor negative feelings towards. However, if it is, being in a good place emotionally is essential.

 

We all know that we need to get rid of the negativity in our lives and this is just one more reason to do it. If you think it can’t happen to you, you might be surprised. These examples are generalizations based on real situations that have happened.

 

While you are clearing out this negativity, give yourself permission to release the negativity you have toward people who you already know are your genetic connections. If you have anger toward your siblings, parent, or others, know that holding onto it serves no purpose.

 

Remember, you are all related. For instance, if you are angry at your mother, consider that she not only gave you life, but you also share about 50% of your DNA with her (yeah I know, you didn’t get THAT DNA). Therefore, being angry with your mother is a bit like being angry at part of yourself. That should make you want to release the anger; however, many people spend lots of time being angry with themselves.

 

If you find yourself having negative feelings toward yourself, start by releasing those feelings. Nothing can be more impacting to you than positive or negative feelings toward yourself. Know that you do not have to hold onto negative feelings.  With work, they can be replaced with feelings of love and kindness.

 

Once you conquer the challenge of releasing negativity toward yourself, branch out to your family, friends, and even those who have wronged you. Although you may never uncover an unknown genetic connection, letting go of the negativity ensures that such a discovery would be easier to handle.

 

No matter your situation, letting go of negative emotions will have a positive impact on your life. Releasing negativity is healthy and it allows you to move forward with your life.

 

So, stay positive! You never know where it will lead in life.