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The Same Old Same Old

The same old same old can lead to complacency.

Structure is good in most instances, in that it gives us some degree of assurance, a sense of stability and a semblance of security.

Most of us if thrust into a situation or lifestyle that was without any structure whatsoever, would find that life far too fluid and uncomfortable. We would probably, either consciously or unconsciously, start the process of trying to get a handle on our situation by establishing some patterns. The old phrase “three hots and a cot” would be among the first.

We would, as much as possible, try to determine when, where and how we would eat, and where we would sleep. These are necessary needs and would probably consume much of our time. Then we would go about putting into place the daily habits that our backgrounds and lifestyles would find comforting. These would include work, social life, spiritual interaction and whatever else we’ve come to find that make us comfortable with who we are and what we do.

In fact in today’s world our “do” has in most instances, become our “who.” Without the structure that we’ve each put into place much of our self worth, or at least our sense of it, would be in peril.

The character trait of gratefulness is one that is cultivated deliberately.

It’s good that we take our responsibilities seriously and it’s good that we’re dependable and that we attend properly to our duties since either directly or indirectly others depend upon our performance. Most of us have appreciation for that which we’ve come to count on, it gives us a feeling of stability, and we should be thankful for that which has come to be familiar to us.

It’s when we start to take for granted that which affords us continuity that good things, familiar situations and even people can start to lose some of their luster in our minds. Rarely does anything major happen to change our point of view, we just slowly start to think differently about them. And it’s in our minds where we typically start the process of wondering. The problem is that wondering always precedes wandering.  We cause great harm to ourselves and others when we mindfully entertain that which we know good and well shouldn’t.

If the thing we’re considering is harmless, healthy, clean and uplifting then no problem has been or is being done. However, a problem arises when we know within us that the thoughts and considerings would, if known, cause undue harm to another in some manner, then we must seriously consider another direction for our thoughts to take.

The price of freedom is eternal vigilance. ~Thomas Jefferson

Of course, the best tactic to take would be to avoid the wandering altogether, and maintain a continued sense of satisfaction and appreciation.  That’s not always an easy thing to accomplish though especially when the “greener grass” seems so inviting. Ensuring that our minds don’t “run astray” can at times feel like a full time job itself.

Thomas Jefferson once said, “The price of freedom is eternal vigilance…” and that has never been more true in today’s fast-paced society where personal values may not be shared. Therefore taking care of what belongs to ones’ own world takes considerably more vigilance than in the past. The allure of the unknown, the glitter that is for some reason only associated with that which we do not have, can seem to take on a life of its’ own.

That’s why it’s so important to take care of what is already yours, to cultivate it and appreciate it because rarely does the hype of the unknown match the reality of the consequences of a poorly thought out decision.

Active and conscious involvement is required to avoid the feeling that life is just the same old same old day in and day out.

Ask the person who’s been out of work for six months if they wouldn’t just love to have more or the “same old same old, ” that job they used to complain about if it meant bringing in a paycheck again. The various scenarios of that which we should be grateful for could go on and on, but one thing they all have in common, and that’s perspective. Being a part of a pattern, of a way of life sometimes disallows us to see proper relationships where other’s may easily see them. It’s kind of like the “forest for the trees” syndrome where proximity doesn’t allow for accurate point of view.

The character trait of gratefulness is one that is cultivated deliberately. As the new year approaches, we have the opportunity to refuse the attitude that it’s just going to be more of the Same Old Same Old. Instead we can see that everything, as long as we still have breath in us, is an opportunity. We can choose to breathe new life into our situation or we can be soured with the astringent of complacency, never realizing that we were given a starting place, not a stopping place.

#gratefulness #appreciation



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