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Siobhan Kelleher Kukolic

Words to inspire the belief that we have all we need to be the change we wish to see.

Month: March 2020

What a difference a week makes

What a difference a week makes.

As a mom-of-three, daughter and sister, I am, like the rest of the world, wondering what this means for my family, my community and the world as I know it. Continue reading

Everything we know to be true

Sometimes life feels like the rug has been ripped out from under us.  Everything we know to be true comes under question.  We wonder about our safety, our health, our loved ones.

In times of crisis we are tested.  The layers fall away and we become more of ourselves.

And who are we? Continue reading

Fear

Fear.  It can change how we move through our day.  Are we worried about our health, our job, our kids, our bills?  It can frame how we act, the decisions we make and how we take care of ourselves.

As writer Anais Nin said, “We don’t see things as they are, we see them as we are.”

And how are we?  What story is replaying in our head?  What are we telling ourselves about our life, our future and what we are seeing in the news?

President Franklin D. Roosevelt said, “The only thing we have to fear is fear itself.”

Often the fear is worse than the narratives we worry about.

Mark Twain said, “I’ve had a lot of worries in my life, most of which never happened.”

We should always take realistic precautions in life.  But sometimes a wait and see mentality and an attitude of gratitude will get us where we need to go.

Despair or hope

In her book Positivity, Barbara L. Fredrickson writes, “As I see it, there are two basic responses to hardship.  Despair or hope.  In despair, you multiply your negativity.  Your fear and uncertainty can turn into stress.  Your stress can morph into hopeless sadness, which in turn can breed shame.  Worse than this mushrooming negativity, despair smothers and snuffs out all forms of positivity.  With positivity extinguished, all possibilities for genuine connections with others are lost.  Despair opens the gate to a downward spiral that may well lead you to rock bottom. 

Hope is different.  It’s not the mirror reflection of despair.  Your hope, in fact, acknowledges negativity with clear eyes.  More important, though, your hope kindles further positivity within you.  Even the most subtle shades of hope can be a springboard for you to feel love, gratitude, inspiration, and more.  And these warm and tender feelings open your mind and your heart and allow you to connect with others.  So hope opens the gate to an upward spiral that empowers you to bounce back from hardship and emerge even stronger and more resourceful than before.

Some people — either genetically or intuitively — seem to understand the gifts of positivity better than the rest of us.  We call those people resilient.  They are the ones who smile in the face of adversity, reframe bad events as opportunities, and adopt a wait-and-see attitude about future threats.  This doesn’t mean that they never feel bad.  They bleed just like everyone else.” Continue reading

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