Why I Love Helping Others

What is the Meaning of Life

There is nothing more important in the world than helping others. As humans, we’re always questioning the meaning of life, but taking care of our Earth, animals and our fellow humans is the only purpose that makes any sense. It’s good to enjoy our life with our family and friends, trying to make the most of our short time, but honestly, when our life is over, what is left?

Helping Others is Key

I’m not sure how others justify the pain in their life, but for me the one that makes it bearable is the idea that it might help someone else. There is a saying that when bad things happen, you can either break apart or break open. The first leaves us broken, shattered, and most likely in a place where hurting others is our only form of communication. The latter leaves us stretched – with a greater capacity to hold that which is still yet to come.

Holiday Project

I am fortunate that I came from a family that also encourages a life of helping others. In the times of hardship and trial, the mentality to reach out and help others instead of withdraw is more easily reached.

At our Christmas 2015 get together, our family decided instead of giving gifts, we would have contest to give gifts for the homeless. This contest criteria was based on creativity, portability and usefulness. Our family is gifted with a wide variety of gifts and talents, so I was super excited to see what everyone came up with.

My grandmother came up with a go-bag. She repurposed a leather bag she had and filled it with every kind of tool and kit a homeless person could need.

My mother used her talent of cooking, making 8 bags of food for her homeless contribution. The bags consisted of homemade banana bread and whole wheat bread and homemade peanut butter. The bread was packaged in a handy carrying case.

My aunt used repurposed jeans, shirts and pajamas to make a beautiful handmade quilt. Her entry ended up winning the competition.

I upcycled plastic bags, cutting into plarn. I used to the plarn and thrift store yarn to crochet bags, so the homeless could carry their goods in them. As much as I love to crochet, I’m pretty slow. I would have liked to make a lot more bags, but time just got away from me and I wasn’t able to keep up the pace. Plarn combines my joy for upcycling and crocheting, and this project was extra special because I got to share that joy and help others. It’s easy to find ways to help others without having to spend a lot of money or time.

Can’t get enough love? Check out what these other bloggers have to say about it!

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What gives meaning to life? Friends? Family? Money? Accomplishments? For me, it's all about helping others. Check out the article to find out why.

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How to Change the World: A Guide for Millennials

Why A Guide for Millennials?

Life on your own is a bit scary. I get it. I’ve been through job losses, roommate issues, and other things. Really, some of my worst fears have come to life and really I’d never thought I’d make it. But I am making it. I’m a perfectionist and mistakes I’ve always seen as a waste of time.  I wish I could take them all back, but if I did I would never know the amazing relief of knowing that I really can make it on my own.

Over the next few months, I will have to rely on my family more than I would like, but the fact that I’ve even made it this far is quite amazing to me. Most of my friends still haven’t left their parent’s house. I won’t be able to take back my mistakes, but I can use them to help others and I hope this guide for millennials will start that process. It won’t answer all the questions, but it will get you started to changing the world in no time.

Last week I wrote a message to millennials because I want to see this generation do great things and I believe we do have the right tools to do it. But some of us are a bit misguided about how the real world works. I decided to do some research and develop this guide for millennials. I want to see us make the difference, but first we’re going to have to realize a few things.

Life on your own is a bit scary. This guide for millennials won't answer all the questions, but it will get you started to changing the world in no time.

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Motivational Monday- Find Stars

Small Things

We live in a crowded society and sometimes it clouds our minds, making it difficult to find stars. Recently, I’ve started to realize about life, which is sad because my mom has told me this for years, is that it’s all about the small things. Most people who are truly satisfied with their life say it’s all about the small things. Some find stars, rainbows, their family, a good deal at a thrift store, or whatever else there is. They find those stars and focus on it in the hard times.

Need some motivation to start of the week? Just remember When it rains, look for rainbows. When it's dark, look for stars. -Unknown Follow the link for this week's encouraging message.

The past few months have been bumpy to say the least. I let those circumstances control me, make me feel less than and completely overwhelm me. The funny thing is that no matter how low I felt, it was always the small things that helped me keep going. I refer to them as breadcrumbs because I literally felt like I was starving in a dessert, dying but all along the way, I would find little pieces of hope to keep going.

How I Find Stars

At first the bread crumbs were so small and so far apart, they weren’t nearly enough to survive on, but enough to give me hope. I knew God was there. He had to be quiet because it was a test, but I knew He was there rooting for me. Just like always, it was my passion for upcycling that got me through. Almost any time I left the house, took a walk around the block, I would get a bread crumb.

One time I was having a particularly rough day, I went to the beautiful campus across the street from my house. I wasn’t really looking for anything, I just wanted to escape and get some fresh air. I went to one of my favorite buildings and climbed the stairs to get to the balcony to look over the campus. Out of no where a bag, not just any bag, but a decent sized bag, came floating from no where. Bags mostly get stuck in bushes, ditches, and other places on the ground. However, this one really had no way of getting there, since it was heavier and the only way to get up to the balcony was from the stairs.

Now, I might sound crazy. Only a crazy person can find hope in a stupid plastic bag, but that bag was everything. I just knew it was waiting for me. It would give me plenty of plarn for my homeless bags.

Eventually, as I went on the bread crumbs were getting bigger. I felt more than hope, eventually I could quit crawling across the desert and pick myself up.

How Will You Find Stars

The thing is the big picture is too much for anyone person. You can’t have all the answers and you can’t do it all at once. You have to find those little things that bring you back. It can be plastic bags, rainbows, stars, your kids, whatever, but hang on to it. Look for the stars and they will guide you home.

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Motivational Monday-The Right Time

Time…

It might be safe to say that time is our worst enemy- we’re always waiting for Mr. Right Time. Ohh yes, the waiting game. waiting for this or that, waiting for the…. right time.
Sorry folks, if you’re waiting for the right time, it’ll never come. There’s always something to go wrong, something else you have to get done. There will always be something that needs your attention.
Need some motivation to start your week off? Just remember: "Do not wait; the time will never be 'just right.' Start where you stand, and work with whatever tools you may have at your command, and better tools will be found as you go along." -George Herbert

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Motivation Monday- Land on Your Feet

Cats…

I’ve been inspired by the cat species lately and their ability to land on their feet. They also know how to say no and don’t feel bad about it, they are independent, they know the power of the nap, they’re never too old to still be curious and they don’t love just anyone- you have to earn it.

Need some motivation to start your week off? Just remember: "No man ever acheived worth-while success, who did not, at one time or another, find himself with at least one foot hanging well over the bring of failure." -Napoleon Hill

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Motivation Monday- Be a Diamond

Finding Your Inner Diamond

It seems like being a diamond is easy, right. I mean, they are the hardest substance in the world, but what did it take to get there. I don’t know about you but when I meet someone who has been through the fire and still comes out with a positive outlook on life, I just think they’re the most beautiful person in the world. While I talk with them, I try to soak up all that positive energy and find a way to be just like that. Do I always make it? Not even close. I take life way too seriously when I know good and well that I won’t make it out alive. But sometimes life just keeps hammering away at an unbearable rate. Lately, it seems like one thing after another, but I know it’s just the beginning of something good.

Need some motivation to start your week off? Just remember, "A diamond is a chunk of coal that did well under pressure." Henry Kissinger

Are You Being Buried?

Being a diamond is both a burden and an honor. When it feels like life is starting to bury you, just remember that someone is looking for you. When they find you, it will make their day, week, month, year and maybe even lifetime. Sometimes, it’s only for a reason, but then you’ll be able to help someone else. Our struggles that come through life’s dump, is what makes us strong. As I writing this, I was still struggling with the events of my life in past month. I always try to think positively about this kinds of experiences because I know I can help someone else, but then it seems like I’m failing to help people too. I still find it hard to look past my failures and be positive, but I was following this story from the Humans of New York. No matter what you’re facing, this can put a totally different perspective on your life. Their most recent one was a couple, who lost one son from suicide and the other in the war not much later. They had one daughter, but the loss of two sons would be enough to crush anyone. The posts tell a little piece of the story each time, and you think that they’re going to be crushed and let it stop them. Instead they use that to help others. I’ve embedded the posts below, so you can read it for yourself.

The Perspective of a Diamond

These stories have a way of putting life into perspective. I don’t see what happened to them as weaknesses or failures, but it wouldn’t be considered a strength either. They could have been crushed by life, but they decided to rise above and use those experiences to help others.

It seems like senseless tragedies happen everyday, but then comes along a story posted above. Some bad things just can’t be helped, but there are people like those above who have to suffer things that just don’t make any sense. They could have wasted away, very easily and would have never been judged. But like didn’t let life bury them. They became diamonds. They became strong and made the most sense in their situation.

Please, we have the same opportunity to use our tragedy, however big or small it seems compared to this story, to do good for the world. Don’t waste it. Be the diamond someone else is looking for.

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Motivation Monday- Find Your Uniqueness

What Makes You Unique

How do you find your uniqueness? The problem with the world is that no one wants to celebrate differences. We’re all afraid that if we’re too different then we won’t be accepted. We create a domino effect because those around us are afraid to show their unique qualities around us.  Some people spend their whole life trying to fit into a box, so they can be accepted, instead of stepping up and solve problems others can’t. That’s such a sad thought.

Need some motivation to start your week off? Just remember, "If everyone would look for that uniqueness then we would have a very wonderful world. " -Michael Schenker

Does this quote inspire you? Download it here.

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Motivation Monday- Lighten Up!

Lighten Up?

Do I know how to lighten up? It’s a fact, no one has ever accused me of being too fun or too light. Unfortunately, even my humor, which people laugh at because it’s completely ridiculous, is usually completely serious.

Need some motivation to start your week off? Just remember: "Your attitude is like a box of crayons that color your world. Constantly color your picture gray, and your picture will always be bleak. Try adding some bright colors to the picture by including humor, and your picture begins to lighten up." Allen Klein

Does this quote inspire you? Click and download now!

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Motivation Monday- Change Your Color

Need some motivation to start your week off? "Just remember, if you're feeling blue, try painting yourself in a different color." - Hannah Cheatem

Does this quote inspire you? Click and download now!

What’s Your Color?

Often times we view ourselves in a more negative light than others see us, but we have to change our color. Rather than feed into this negativity it is often useful to view ourselves in a different perspective. We are artists of our own life. We have to take the ugly and mix with the beautiful to make something unique and useful to the world. Often I find, when I alter my color and have a different perspective  I have a more uplifting, up more realistic view of myself.

However, it’s also easy to get an overly optimistic or inflated view of self, too. When this happens, we can send a cascade reaction of negative appraisals from others. This aforementioned response from others is often our own self-fulfilling prophecy and can be just as easily avoided as our own negative self-appraisal.

Change the Color

Try something new. On the one hand, self-esteem is important.  On the other, acting superior to others can alienate us from the direct people we need to be in contact with. Changing our color, without changing the base of our canvas, can help us relate with others in a new way.  Often they add to what we already have making a more colorful pictures.

So if I’m feeling blue, I should try yellow and if I’m green with envy I should try red. I find that the color I paint myself often offsets the unrealistic thinking I have, to reconnect with myself, to restore a healthy self-image and of course, to reconnect with humanity.

Sometimes, it’s easy to feel blue, but it’s important to remember that it’s up to us to paint our own canvases. Sometimes, it’s easy to use up all the other colors and then have to use up the blue before buying a new set, but it’s OK. Don’t let every day be ruined with the blues.

Don’t forget to save this pinspiration for later.

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Motivation Monday- Little Pieces

Little Pieces

I love this quote and it reminds me of one of my favorite quotes: “I alone cannot change the world, but I can cast a stone across the waters to create many ripples.” -Mother Teresa

Need some Monday Motivation to start your week off? Just remember: “Do your little bit of good where you are; it's those little bits of good put together that overwhelm the world.” ― Desmond Tutu

When trying to make positive change in the world, it’s important to remember that you’re not responsible for all of it.

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