Posts Tagged With: Yogi Tea

Day 2610: Failure

Yesterday, a girl told me she always felt like a failure.  I asked her, “What if the concept of failure did not exist?” —  a question I’ve asked before in therapy and in this blog (here and here).

She answered that question the same way many others have: “That would be GREAT.”  I said, “Welcome to my world.”

What would happen if we all pretended that the concept of failure did not exist?

I did not fail to find great quotes about failure here:

Failure isn’t fatal, but failure to change might be.  —John Wooden

Success is often achieved by those who do not know that failure is inevitable. — Coco Chanel

Failure should be our teacher, not our undertaker. Failure is delay, not defeat. It is a temporary detour, not a dead end. Failure is something we can avoid only by saying nothing, doing nothing, and being nothing.  — Denis Waitley

When you take risks you learn that there will be times when you succeed and there will be times when you fail, and both are equally important.  — Ellen DeGeneres

I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways which won’t work.  — Thomas A. Edison

Success is not final,  failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts. — Winston Churchill

There is only one thing that makes a dream impossible to achieve: the fear of failure. —Paulo Coelho

Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm. — Winston Churchill

We are all failures – at least the best of us are.  — J.M. Barrie

You build on failure.  You use it as a stepping stone. Close the door on the past. You don’t try to forget the mistakes, but you don’t dwell on it. You don’t let it have any of your energy, or any of your time, or any of your space. —Johnny Cash

Failure is so important.  We speak about success all the time. It is the ability to resist failure or use failure that often leads to greater success. I’ve met people who don’t want to try for fear of failing. —J.K. Rowling

No human ever became interesting by not failing. The more you fail and recover and improve, the better you are as a person. Ever meet someone who’s always had everything work out for them with zero struggle? They usually have the depth of a puddle. Or they don’t exist. —Chris Hardwick

With a hint of good judgment, to fear nothing, not failure or suffering or even death, indicates that you value life the most. You live to the extreme; you push the limits; you spend your time building legacies.  Those do not die.  — Criss Jami 

Whenever I write these blog posts, this message appears:

Saving of draft failed.

I don’t let that stop me.

Let’s see if failure exists in any of my recent photos:

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I keep failing at that very difficult level in Peggle but I keep retrying, which I find comforting.

I wonder what interesting failures are ahead for me today?

Here‘s Billie Holiday with “I’ll Never Fail You” …

and Bonnie Raitt with “You Can’t Fail Me Now.”

 

I’ll never fail to thank those who help me create this daily blog, including YOU.

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Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 20 Comments

Day 2606: Antisocial

Is it antisocial to think,  every once in a while, “I’m so done with everyone and everything”?

I'm so done with everyone

Here’s a definition of “antisocial” I found on social media:

an·ti·so·cial
/ˌan(t)ēˈsōSHəl,ˌanˌtīˈsōSHəl/
adjective

1. contrary to the laws and customs of society; devoid of or antagonistic to sociable instincts or practices.
“a dangerous, unprincipled, antisocial type of man”
Similar:
objectionable
offensive
beyond the pale
unacceptable
unsocial
asocial
distasteful
disruptive
disorderly
lawless
rebellious
sociopathic
2. not sociable; not wanting the company of others.

I would say that, sometimes, I’m  not wanting the company of others, especially if they’re objectionable, offensive, beyond the pale, unacceptable unsocial, asocial, distasteful, disruptive, disorderly, lawless, rebellious, or sociopathic.

Does that make me antisocial?

Let’s see what my Daily Bitch Calendar says:

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Are these other photos antisocial?

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Even on days when I’m feeling a little antisocial, I also feel anti-antisocial or, more simply, social.

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I don’t want to seem antisocial, but I need to end this antisocial post in order to get to work on time.

Before I do, here’s some antisocial music.

 

I’m never too antisocial to express my thanks to all who help me create and share this daily blog, including YOU.

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Categories: definition, gratitude, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , | 31 Comments

Day 2602: What’s the matter with me?

What’s the matter with me, that I’ve written three posts  (here, here, and here) with the title “What’s wrong with me?”  over the last seven years?

What’s the matter with me, that one day after I lost and found my wallet, I dropped a New Yorker tote bag with my marriage certificate while I was walking to work in the extreme cold, even though that marriage certificate matters so much to me?

What’s the matter with me, that I was considering titling this post “What would Freud say?”

What’s the matter with me, that I’m explaining losing track of important things by telling myself that I’m so concentrated on not losing my wedding ring (which is too big) that I’m dropping other things?

What’s the matter with me, that I have SO MANY things to keep track of every day?

What’s the matter with me, that I’m sharing only these photos from yesterday?

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What’s the matter with me, that I’m losing track of so many things these days but can still hear this song in my head?

What’s the matter with me, that

  • I’m sad that Sam Cooke died so young,
  • I’m anxious about so many matters in today’s news,
  • I tell people in my therapy groups that anxiety about forgetting makes us forget even more, and
  • when people ask me “What’s wrong with me?” I answer “nothing.”

If you comment on what you think is the matter with anything, that will matter to me.

What’s the matter with me, that I always end every post with gratitude?

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Categories: group therapy, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 25 Comments

Day 2579: Recommended daily doses

Experts recommend daily doses of

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  • calm and bright,

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  • self-love,
  • self-respect,

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  • letting go of judgment, guilt, dread, worry, and other unhelpful habits,

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  • caution,

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  • strength,
  • support,

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  • whimsy,
  • warmth,
  • animals, and

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  • BITCHING!

Here‘s the dose of YouTube music pictured above:

 

Now it’s time for my daily dose of gratitude!

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Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 23 Comments

Day 2568: Downs and Ups

Every day has downs and ups, for all of us.

My day included many downs and ups, including

  • worrying about performing a Steely Dan song and an original song at an Open Mic last night,
  • buying a ticket to see Jacob Collier at Boston’s House of Blues in May,
  • losing my lyrics sheet for my original song,
  • reconstructing the lyrics as best I could,
  • reconnecting at the Open Mic with Nat, who co-led groups and co-wrote a song with me last year,
  • feeling empathy for the little girl who cried when she forgot how to play “Jingle Bell Rock” on the electric guitar,
  • two people talking loudly during my introduction to and performance of my first song,
  • those people leaving before my second song,
  • forgetting a chord in “Pretzel Logic,”
  • making it through “Pretzel Logic” and my “country” song, “What’s Keeping Me Up is What’s Going Down,” and
  • cheering for the little girl who returned with her acoustic guitar and played a great “Jingle Bell Rock.”

What downs and ups do you see here?

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Here are the downs and ups of my Open Mic performance last night:

I keep writing new lyrics down for “What’s Keeping Me Up is What’s Going Down.” It’s time to put these up on WordPress:

What’s Keeping Me Up is What’s Going Down

by Ann Koplow

What’s keeping me up is what’s going down,

I’m sleepless and hopeless and wearing a frown.

Problems abound, no solutions to be found.

What’s keeping me up is what’s going down.

In my local and the global news

There’s no quick fix I can find to choose.

No matter what your state or views

There’s no relief, just a belief in booze.

What’s keeping me up is what’s going down.

I’m sleepless and hopeless and wearing a frown.

Problems abound, no solutions to be found.

What’s keeping me up is what’s going down.

As I turn to everyone I see

And I ask if they relate to me.

They haven’t got one moment free.

They seem crippled by anxiety.

What’s freaking me out is what’s rushing in.

I’m tired and helpless, no reason to grin.

Fighting with kin, politicians who spin.

What’s freaking me out is what’s rushing in.

As I try to end this song with hope,

Hope seems to be beyond my scope.

Is the answer just to smoke some dope?

When I’m stoned I’m just inclined to mope.

What’s freaking me out is what’s rushing in.

I’m tired and helpless, no reason to grin.

Fighting with kin, politicians who spin.

What’s freaking me out is what’s rushing in.

What’s keeping me up is what’s going down.

© Ann Koplow, 2019

Feel free to write down any thoughts and feelings about downs and ups in the comments section, below.

Now it’s time to get down with gratitude, which always cheers me up!

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Categories: group therapy, original song, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 24 Comments

Day 2550: Narrative

Because of the kind of narrator I am, I’m going to start today’s narrative with a definition of “narrative”.

NARRATIVE

noun
1. a story or account of events, experiences, or the like, whether true or fictitious.
2. a book, literary work, etc., containing such a story.
3. the art, technique, or process of narrating, or of telling a story:
“Somerset Maugham was a master of narrative.”
4. a story that connects and explains a carefully selected set of supposedly true events, experiences, or the like, intended to support a particular viewpoint or thesis:
“to rewrite the prevailing narrative about masculinity”; “the narrative that our public schools are failing.”

Because I’m a psychotherapist who uses narrative therapy, I’m going to add to the narrative here with a description of that.

Narrative therapy is a form of psychotherapy that seeks to help people identify their values and the skills and knowledge they have to live these values, so they can effectively confront whatever problems they face. The therapist seeks to help the person co-author a new narrative about themselves by investigating the history of those qualities. Narrative therapy claims to be a social justice approach to therapeutic conversations, seeking to challenge dominant discourses that it claims shape people’s lives in destructive ways.

Yesterday, I noticed some self-destructive, outmoded, and fixed narratives, including

  • I am worthless.
  • I cannot trust anyone.
  • I am stuck forever.
  • I am weak.
  • If people knew the real me, they would reject me.
  • I am worthwhile only when I’m at my best.
  • People don’t want to listen to me.
  • Speaking up is dangerous.
  • Not speaking up is dangerous.
  • People who dislike me can ruin my life.
  • I am helpless.
  • If I ask for help, I won’t get it.
  • People, including me, are not capable of change.
  • There is no hope.

I always have hope that people can change their narratives.  After all, there are so many different ways to tell a story, even the story of your life.

Do my photos from yesterday create a narrative?

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The people at SoundBot are sharing the narrative, above, that every moment deserves a song. Here‘s a song — which intertwines lots of narratives — that I was listening to yesterday with my new SoundBot wireless musical earmuffs:

We all have a different, personal narrative of the events of September 11, 2001, but we all share elements of that painful narrative.

I look forward to the narratives in the comments, below.

I end every narrative here with gratitude, so thanks to all who help me create these daily posts, including YOU.

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Categories: personal growth, photojournalism, Psychotherapy | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 19 Comments

Day 2549: Our world deserves more _____

Our world deserves more

  • love,
  • care,
  • attention,
  • connection,
  • understanding,
  • trustworthy leaders,
  • humanity,
  • music, and
  • people like you.

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Our world deserves more wonderful, fortunate, and  transformative musicals like Come From Away.

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Our world deserves more healing of traumatic events like 9/11 through art, as shown in Come From Away’s “Me and the Sky”.

 

Our world deserves more

  • focus on the here and now,

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  • welcoming entrances,

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  • spaces for play,

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  • innovation,

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  • things worth waiting in line for,

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  • choices of transportation,

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  • outside and inside messages,

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  • cats like Oscar,

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  • tea and other kinds of comfort,

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  • and, of course, more gratitude for every moment.

 

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Categories: personal growth, photojournalism, theater | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 24 Comments

Day 2545: Transformation

When I search my old blog posts for “transformation,” I immediately find this:

Day 2395: Self-Transformation

When I wrote that post last June, I was definitely performing some self-transformation, as I often do with this blog.  That day, I was transforming the sadness, anger, and shock I felt about somebody’s behaviors into a positive and upbeat blog post.  I left some subtle clues about that transformation in my photos of book titles (which include lots of “f-cks,” one “sh-t”, and a “You Can’t Hurt Me”).  That behind-the-scenes transformation helped me cheer up, move on, and face another day.

Today, I want to share transformation of a different kind.  Yesterday, my Coping and Healing group transformed our roving thoughts into focused mindfulness by using the angel cards which a past transforming group member left me years ago.  One of the members chose this card:

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I chose this card  …

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… which was one of the few blank cards in the pack.  When I focused on that card during the mindfulness exercise, I noticed a transformation.  Somebody had tried to write something on that card, with a pen that had no ink.  Can you see it?

I tilted the card into the light, to try to discover the hidden markings.

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At first, I thought the hidden word (which definitely started with a “T”) was “Thankfulness” ( probably because I find thankfulness so transformative). After many moments of mindful scrutiny, I finally discovered what somebody had tried to write on that angel card, years ago.

Transformation

Then, when it was my turn to check in, I shared that transformation with the rest of the group.

Do you see transformation in any of my other recent photos?

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One of the group members yesterday asked the rest of us how we would transform ourselves, if transformation was possible.   Somehow, that transformed into a conversation about ducks, including

  • how some of us are ducks — calm on the surface with lots of action below,
  • the transforming coping strategy of letting things roll off one’s back, like a duck, and
  • how to duck other people’s negativity.

Here‘s “Vital Transformation” by John McLaughlin and The Mahavishnu Orchestra, which I experienced as very transformative during the 1970s.

Now it’s time for another transformation — I shall transform this blog post into a guessing game!  Last night, Michael chose this classic Tom Jones song for us to dance to after dinner:

Michael told me that the young guitarist playing on that track later transformed into one of the most famous guitarists in rock and roll.  After I guessed Eric Clapton, Jimi Hendrix, and others, I finally came up with the right answer.  Can you?

Feel free to transform your thoughts and feelings into a comment, below.

As always, I end these posts with a transformation of thankfulness for all who help me create this daily blog, including YOU!

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Categories: group therapy, personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 18 Comments

Day 2543: What are you looking at?

What are you looking at?  This blog post?

What is Harley looking at?

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What am I looking at?  The clock, because I overslept and I’m supposed to be at work early today. I’ve got to get this blog post done!

What are we looking at?  Some of my other photos from yesterday.

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I made it!

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Thanks to all who helped me create this very quick post for you to look at, here and now.

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Categories: personal growth, photojournalism, theater | Tags: , , , , , , | 23 Comments

Day 2340: May this day be the day

May this day be the day to lead us to peace, to happiness and to joy.

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May this day be the day where all my photos are relevant to my title.

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May this day be the day that Michael makes another delicious meal for me.

May this day be the day that I share a great song with you.

May this day be the day you listen to “Beautiful Day” by The Levellers featuring Imelda May.

May this day be the day I express my gratitude to all who helped me create another daily post and — of course! — to YOU, for your time and effort on this day.

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Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 16 Comments

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