Someone Like You in this World..Exists

Genuine Exchanges We All Need: There is still someone like you in this world, yup;)

Hello there:)

Miss you my people, sorry i have been less in touch than i’d love to, just taking care of some professional mishaps, but all will be well, it always has to end well, or it’s not the end, right?;)

I hope this post adds some food for thought into your Sunday chill zone:)

PS: I f you can read on, i have a music recommendation/a loveliest band i watched perform: Epic!

Sometimes, i think to myself, this society i am now part of, is not the same as it used to be. It often feels like I’m the only genuine person, looking for genuine fun, for genuine feelings, for a simple good time, a mutual sharing, caring, and exchange..A simple life and good moments to share with others with no nasty motives, when i am not working to make a living and provide ourselves and families.

I keep putting myself out there in the world, i do, really.

Most of us are putting in the effort to socialize; However, it seems like everyone is after something: your money, your power, your position, your connections..you name it, we all fell on (a) “wrong” person(s) in our life, haven’t we?

We don’t feel as comfortable anymore putting ourselves out there. You bet we won’t.

But ..my reality tonight shows: majority of others in this life, think the same as you do. You just need to ask the question and you will get an answer:)

Tonight.. I met a very dear person, a dear friend called M.B.who has settled in the UAE for 4 years or even more now, as far as i can recall us corresponding; he is visiting Lebanon for a week-lucky us!

We met tonight to watch an amazing band called Arnabeat perform at a beautiful pub, with 2 of his people: H. and M-A. That beautiful group of people showed me that even complete strangers can be/think/feel exactly like you do, wanting the same things you want in life: good people, good food, good stories, and so, a good time- all we need is be open, genuine, and exchange a bit of yourself – others will follow suit and tara!

The truth is, I have been in Lebanon for almost 1.5 years since i came back from the UK. Since, it has honestly been challenging to understand how people/the society has changed. The customs, values perhaps are still the same, but people have made it a bit tougher to deal with each other, in the sense, to be transparent and honest about their intentions towards you or your friendship..

In any society or nation of this world, when things get tough, i.e. the national economy and growth stifle, or when politicians’ intentions are no longer centered on the people, new laws are ambiguous, or when making a decent living becomes a heavier burden..people feel it first.

Out of survival instinct, aka Dr. Steve Peter’s Chimp Paradox, it seems we shut down the generous side of us, the genuine giving character and social character because we feel everyone/everything around us is taking a piece of us, or is a potential threat to our wealth, health, and welfare. It makes sense right?

However, tonight, meeting this adorable group of new people has shown me that despite life’s uneasiness, every one of us still values and indulges in intimate, genuine bonds of social interaction and friendship.

Simply put then, We all love good company and a good vibe on a weekend night out, don’t we?

So, you are not alone in your thinking; you are not alone in feeling the fear to put yourself out there; you are not alone in appreciating a good friend, a genuine exchange and getting to know new people.

Others appreciate them, but our world has just made it more difficult for people like you, me, and those with you on this journey, to be as genuine. So stick to what you value, and you will see how other will fall into your circle, appreciating, loving your attitude and thus revealing their exact same attitude to you because deep down, we long to be heard and appreciated by others, we really do.

We are all connected.

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We are all still looking for this now-rare “race” of people, this extinct species capable of carrying this positive vibe to the dinner table, this easiness to initiate conversations, exchange hilarious life incidents, or just this dancing-the-night away attitude, for the sake of a good time and a good, well-deserved laugh after a week(s) of hard work.

When we left tonight, this new group of people I spent the eve with were no longer strangers, but they also shared how “rare people like you are in this world these days [Joy].”

This was meant as a compliment and it touched me deeply; however, it is also at the same time not entirely true because my evening with them revealed there are still other people like Me in this world 🙂 We value the same interactions and simplicity in chats and fun!

I mean, who does not like to be at a dinner table and listen to jokes or funny stories and exchange his/hers? Who prefers to listen to nagging and whining and heart-breaking stories or to look at artificial people showing off all night?

Who does not like to make new friends? to share what they do and know with someone interested to listen?

Who does not like to feel a sense of security and trust amplified? Who does not enjoy exploring other people’s stories (hardship lessons or achievements’), hobbies, passions, and find someone whose hobby complements his or hers and can take it to further heights?

There is someone, many actually, like you in this world; they share these heart-felt needs to bond with people over simple fun, simple exchanges, simple goodness.

We just need to find each other, and the only way to do that, is you to open up, show a piece of your genuine self, not being scared, and see how magically others open up.

You are not the only human who appreciates this, or that, many others are like you, but the adversity in this world and the challenges to build a life amid current national and international developments is pushing you to lose  yourself, your giving,transparent self, and to bury yourself in your own cocoon, where you think nothing bad can happen there, when in reality, you yourself would be degrading, losing yourself, your goodness, kindness, your communication skills that make you a human being, a compassionate creature by nature.

Very truly yours,

Joy

March 12, 2017

Chill zone: gratefulness & my first mini-publication!

Hey you:) 🙂 I had a long, really long day. How was yours?

I’m dead sleepy yet still have some work to be done, but decided to check in here and share a little piece of news.

It reminded me to feel good about myself, and to always be a joy to others, family and friends despite the tiredness especially after a working day.

They are our blessing.

I’ve taken on a new job only beginning this week in Economic Research.

Today was Day 3.

I do not have my own online account created yet or my new business email, hopefully expected tomorrow, but

I did put together and published today,

my very first academic, economic, and professional report here

EDL Bleeding Clogged by Drowning Oil Prices

I will not share this yet on my academic blog, even though i am very proud of my work, until we fix/open my research account where my works would be written under my name, as professionally must be, naturally :).

That’s about it really tonight; i was genuinely excited and thought i’d put it out, sharing myself with you here for a few minutes.

Always look for things or people who reflect a small or big effort you have put in. Be grateful for them. 

These often make us realize how much we can be Givers in this life, even if we feel down on some days or higher on life on others. 

Sincerely yours,

Joy

Nov. 16, 2016; 10.45pm

 

 

 

It’s Happening, Yup, whilst you think “no:O, I’m Planning It”!

My most beautiful people:

I M.i.s.s. y.o.u :D<3 ; It’s “us” time!!

I have a zillion deadlines i need to meet as our summer semester in uni comes to closure; yet, it’s *us* time.

I need it, you do too, your emails, messaging, dropping by on my media and space signals me that. I can also feel you .. here’s one sign that i really truly do:

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I cannot believe i am here now, ditching all else, the life have-to-dos to be on here, feeling as amazing as i do, blogging, sharing a piece of my life with you- it’s been a while and i have so much.

I’ll try to divide them across a couple posts tonight, if you have the time, stay tuned and give me a chance at being your good company? I’d be delighted to have you ‘spend the eve in’, with you lot, the night before my birthday;)

PS :

My sis, Sadness, already thinks i’m growing more and more ‘spiritual’ and an out-of-this-world kind of being who lives in her own planet of positivity and kindness and allgoodthings, in my newly found habits, practices, feeling others, and chill-ness about almost everything and anything frustrating. So, now i’m sure she’d be thinking i’m going nut-tily emotional with virtual, imaginary friends of mine as she would tease about my blogging:OO hihi  (A)

But no worries,  i promise, i told her all about most of you, she knows you’re more real than anybody i know, yep, you: Deb, Tea, Robert, Steph, Ishita, Paardje, The Seeds for Life, madinplainsight … and all of you new followers i haven’t had the chance yet to really get to know you.

 

  • Cici (pronounced like, “sea-sea”):

I hadn’t seen a friend of mine in more than a year, until we met on Saturday July 30th 2016 at the phenomenal Engagement of one of our dearest, dearest friends from uni.

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We had lovely, refreshing, thought-provoking sharings and chats during the ride to the South of Lebanon on a Saturday eve to get ourselves to the much-awaited engagement;

we talked endlessly throughout the evening, until Cici said one thing that lit a light bulb in my head, it just stuck there until today, when I sat and actually blogged about it here to you.

 

So we were catching up .. on where life took us, in what directions, professionally, academically, socially, and intimately; from one convo to the next, and then she said so assertively and realistically,

“Yes it’s so true true .. Life is happening as we are planning[…]”

Ladies and Gents:

shouldn’t we live a little more? plan a little less?

because the time we’re using to “plan” how to make better use of our time and energy and life is actually time wasted from the now we live in? Isn’t it?

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Cici has been with her partner for the past 6.5 years, 7 in a month’s time. I asked, how did you get through, 7 years?! Wow, wow, i am truly amazed! Knowing- please: that for all that time, she’s been in Lebanon, while he’s in the USA (time difference is the least of their worries i’d bet!), building the brightest future he can see, for himself, his children, and wife to be. She was/is doing the exact same, developing herself and growing.

Tough call, huh?

We don’t always get it easy in life; we just don’t, it’s life, no problem though: each of us, each one, has their story, their very own, you’d know it and that more than anyone, won’t you? –

Ambitious though? Determined? Focused? Hell yes.

I don’t think I ever said that to her or her partner, knowing both are jewels in my life – but here’s my chance, finally having the courage so genuinely too, to post and announce it here to them:

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I admire the both of them, the courage, the persistence, the faith in life’s ways.. big time big time big time.

 

🙂

I mean..getting over the sort of challenges they faced, and those are only the external challenges we saw or knew of !?

They have been more away from each other than together in the same geographic location really; but that night, she had breaking news:

Cici was accepted and fully funded for a PhD in the USA, when neither she nor her partner expected or planned for things to turn and work out that way.

Fate?

Grace?

Hard work and dedication over the long-term?

Will power?

Luck? … (*Add in your/more suggested words and thought here provoked by the couple’s story*)

This is where she said, life happens as we are planning or trying to plan it… 

Heat of the moment, I thought this was beautiful, it spurred in me a certain feeling i try to put for you in words here (so that’s me now talking to life at that exact time):

{You know what you’re doing , don’t you? Cici and her partner F.R. have been trying to plan, plan, and plan just a little more, hoping that actually being together in the same space would become real,

and there you wandered off, completely on your own, as they thought they were planning YOU! You little sneaky but beautiful surprise, you gave it to them, after 7 years, on a silver platter ( did not say Gold here as they will still be 3 hours apart by plane as i was told, hehe nonetheless :D:D!!) }

We just need to cease the opportunity(-ies); keep fidgeting; email, google, meet them others, inquire, be open to others, to people, to your dreams, ambitions, to idols you think are too high up the ladder to be reached.. let us be happy for them rather than be jealous.

Why Not?;

Why not be happy for others? deeply, truly, wholly, genuinely, with the good nature of a human being? We could be that, we all could, for jealousy does not bring you whatever it is you envy, does it? 

  • Selim and Nidale:

On July 28th, 2 days prior to the Engagement of our dear friend above in the pic, Mum and I went up to a home furniture and home décor, artisanal-oriented boutique, but one that sells, crafts, and/or ships very rare, unique pieces, most are hand-made, and not even manufactured anymore in their places of origin like this little pill box, hand-crafted:

Selim, the passionate owner of the boutique, has a passion for beautiful objects, and people, and it so happened i was with my mum that evening to buy an engagement gift, and he insisted i take this precious box home with me as a gift.

His wife Nidale, runs the shop with him; they live in the floor right above. #simplelife #fulloflove.

I have not seen – EVER- two  people who love each other as much as this couple; and their love story, oh boy, I’ll never forget it.

These two gems are 68 and 63 (respectively: Selim and Nidale).

In their youth, they were WILD, literally, WILD and YOUNG and FREE (yes just like the song indeed).

To their era, they were so open, as they dedicated their life, each on his/her own at first, to dancing. But, not any dancing: they represented LEBANON, their home country, in Canada, as they belonged to a folkloric dance studio.

Lebanese “Dabke (our traditional dance) was their passion, their LIFE.

They both left their family at a very early age, when their dance studio asked each of them, in his/her respective team, to join the one team summoning the studio’s elite dancers, to travel to Canada, to teach the Dabke tradition to expats: children, youth, adults, and elderly too!

They had never danced on the same team, but apparently, as uncle (‘3ammo’ is the equivalent Arabic term used to familiarize a stranger who is so friendly and warm like) Selim and aunty Nidale had ‘a thing’ from a distance, as they practiced with the dance group in Lebanon.

Life then intervenes, again, this time giving Selim and Nidale Love on a golden platter: the trip to Canada, the adventure and thrill of mingling with expats missing their home country so much, had lasted enough years (TEN!), which allowed both of them to marry, in Canada, as they both continued doing their own thing, pursuing their most sincere, authentic passion: Lebanese Dabke Dance.

They both then moved back to Lebanon, where they had 3 children, two of which live in Canada now, and one is in Lebanon.

(PS: To be true to you my people, i tried asking the couple for a photo, as they told me the story in the boutique they looked to gorgeous, heart-warming, and 3ammo Selim even flipped open his Nokia, old-fashioned signature phone to show me photos of his gorgeous bride ! Unfortunately yet so sweetly, aunty Nidale tells me,

Forgive me Dear but no photos tonight please, i have not done my hair, and Selim is not allowed to pose for any photos without me”.

Then, she went on to show me pictures on her antique mobile as well, of herself, when she was in her 20s, all pretty and dolled up, dancing her life out.)

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My heart melted; seeing them .. and how life worked its magic for 45 YEARS to-date.

You tell me, how does their story make you feel? (*sigh*:)

 

 

  • Tati and Santiago

In the same themes of this post: Life, Engagement event, Cici’s breaking news, being happy for others, giving…

I was at the farewell of Cici a week later from the Engagement. I had the chance to re-unite with some old uni mates, particularly a certain Tati.

She was with someone that night, a man i recognize only from her social media and timeline.. where i also knew she was struggling and has been for a while, to move mountains.. why? what? how?

Long story short, she is a Lebanese (non-European), trying to find a good job in Europe, enough said, don’t you think? The simple and really logical reality is, Europe today is looking after itself and itself only and mostly (especially post-2008 crisis), so it cannot really afford anymore, the opportunities and advantages it used to give to foreigners, like it did before.

Now, Tati and I got the chance to chat, she introduced me to Santiago, Mr.-mysterious on her social media 😉 He was absolutely adorable for one particular reason in my eyes:

the whole time, from the time of introduction to the time when we said goodbye at the end of the eve, Tati was all he talked, bragged, and smiled about. It was beautiful to watch them, truly.

Turns out,

  1. Them too were already engaged!
  2. On that farewell night, Tati had just gotten two job offers in Switzerland, not only that, but those offers would leave her only an hour away or less from her fiance!

Would you tell me about Life now? Would you give this story a Golden or silver, or perhaps bronze platter? 

🙂

I was genuinely thrilled, thrilled to see how life challenged them yes, but then to see how it so generously gave back to them, as they just gave more love and determination, will power, hard work, commitment, and love into each other’s lives..

Now, i thought of the flip-side too, honestly i did that night as i drove back home, listen:

Knowing the situation in Lebanon, growing more difficult economically and politically by the minute, i thought to myself:

how many friends of mine, acquaintances, have been struggling for years now with finding a decent post, salary, and life despite their good qualifications…

How do you think they, and even us sometimes, me included, would have looked at Tati and Santiago, Selim and Nidale, Cici and F.R., and/or many other ‘success stories’ similar to those in my life shared above, and they would just envy them, or maybe they just self-wondered, why do they get to get it all?

Why does it work out for them? or for one of them just like that?

‘Just like that’ is how we all see it, isn’t it?

We don’t see the entire iceberg when we look at people’s lives because all we see is that tip, that happiness that comes in at the end, and which is all people share in their lives really-

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Look at all the Facebook lives and Instagram accounts, Snap chat stories, and photos.

Does anyone take a photo of himself or herself when they’re in a depression, or crushed, or in their own shadows? Rarely, or for certain purposes, .. right?

Most of my Facebook has happy relationships, lives, smiles, family gatherings, achievements, awards and ceremonies, *sparkle times* as i love calling them:)

Ladies, or gents, a moment of truth tonight, I nakedly stand here and ask myself and You guys, my people:

How many times did you look at others, really, honestly, and thought to yourself:

Why are they achieving miracles?

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And i’m still waiting on mine? ,

Why do they get this or that and that?,

While i remain stuck here and there for years? and i keep getting lost and then find myself, then find hope and then lose it to find it again as i struggle then overcome challenges then fight for my life and balance again, but then hit rock bottom before another incident knocks me down again?

…all whilst others seemingly are getting all they ever wished for, living La Vie en Rose !

tom and erry devils

We are humans,

And our mind goes on and on and on for ages, days, weeks and years sometimes, making us envious, making us think it has defeated us, when the truth is:

the mind has no power, it’s all in you and how much you give it and how you adjust your own sails you were equipped with from the day you were born.

It’s okay, i forgive myself for being egoistic sometimes, and i think you should too. I forgive even people closest to me sometimes, whom i look at in certain situations and I think to myself:

you know what, you are so full of yourself, why would you want to envy what others have achieved, or received, life is about giving NOT taking.

And when you give, really give, this is when things and blessings more specifically will flow back to you, ten folds! 

I’m actually reading an extraordinary Book now on “givers” in life v/s “takers” and “matchers” (these last try to find the balance between not giving so naively, and not being entirely arrogant or as self-centered as “takers”:

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{Adam Grant- Why helping others drives our success: Give and Take}

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Dedicated to all humans on this platform, who accept and admit their faults;

we admit we are not perfect, but we have our eye and hearts focused on the greater good, on that angel of ours rather than the devil on our shoulder.

Goodness is rare, it comes from within, and it can only be safeguarded by being the authentic you, true to yourself, the closest possible to the beautiful human you were created to be on this earth, in this life.

 

All my love,

Joy

Aug. 19, 2016; 7.32pm

 

 

 

 

 

How to know you’re Blessed

Hello there! Couldn’t stay away for too long this time:$

Oh well, truth be told, it’s getting late on my side of the world [as in 1.30 am late), yet i am sleepless for some reason..

Playing a playlist of Zen music in attempts to fall asleep but…too high on life, hehe 🙂 Those who know me know me i.e. in real life would definitely say YES to that (A);

I reckon even My People  would agree too, those who are on my Good Day mailing list

(this last by the way started as a humble chain of kindness, few names on there, yet apparently now turning into a beautiful ‘secret society’ as some of the most genuine friends among My People referred to it it this week:)

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So here i am sat with Fluffy, resorting to you on our beautifully-shared platform, to share a piece of where my mind wanders.

Lesson of the week:

Blessings come in words, actions, thoughts, and/or signs (silent or loud- all the same), we just got to keep an eye for them! Life is beautiful, absolutely beautiful to have a heart beat:))

You know you are blessed, when even before the week is over, even before it has been 7 days since u invested in 1 act of kindness and mindfulness, you are overwhelmed with messages of kindness, appreciation, self-fulfillment… and life opens up, it just lights up

i.e. when you feel so loved simply because you “touched” another life , another.

..even from those people you thought of as: grumpy, irritated, uptight…let alone those already sweet and explicit and straight forward in expressing their emotions in life.

  1. I sent out my usual Good Day Email this morning; that was it today:
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Woke up feeling particularly grateful today, really beautiful feeling:) couldn’t keep it to myself so sharing it with you My People. Let’s have Faith in life and its ways – no matter what i going on right now in ur day, week, or life. There’s always someone watching out for you, in action, prayer, or thought-always..and these do count: I ave reaped their effects and it’s surreal but actually real. 

The ripple effect on my people toady in particular, felt special, amazing, in the lines of a powerful, loaded blessing like this:

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We all know how challenging it can get to ditch the bad mood you woke up in, don’t we?

And the below too, partly in Arabic  – the official language here in Lebanon:

(last Arabic word = “today”)

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2. In my post yesterday (here), i did tell you how i “invested” in my people..in the smallest of ways this week and the past one;

So have a look at how my week went by, and tell me if they make any one, even the grumpiest person ever, feel good about themselves and propped up, for real, or not:

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(Arabic translation: Thank you from the bottom of my heart; I am completely speechless, Thank you so very much.)

3. I had not added anyone to my Good Day mailing list for months..  Knowing i have a vow since April 2015 to add 1 person every day, yup, i was frustrated deep down as to why i have no one new on there for a while now. I did not force it though.’coincidentally’- NOT, only a week ago, look what happened:

In the first 3 days of the week only, I had already added: S.G., J.S., J.A, M.A, S.B…& counting and their reactions …. !!!

PS:

Someone very special is finally visiting Lebanon again tomorrow ad i cannot wait to see them! I think that counts as legit driver of insomnia, right?:$;)

My people, my beautiful circle, my strength, and the only ones who keep me going here on this blog and in life:

Time flies,

days pass by,

we may not pass from here again,

let’s spread love, kindness, and

share all we would love to say to someone while we are still at it, this life, this health we now have – even if we think it’s not really a good “health” or “life”..

 

With all my love,

Joy

May 13, 2016 at 1.48am

How to keep our “spark”?

My people, my dearest ones,

A very warm hello to you tonight :))

I’ve been enjoying my no-posting time lately- very much so actually, by simply reading, exploring, and ‘meeting’ amazing, amazing bloggers on here.

I’ve been savoring: spending  my days(nights actually when i most free from life’s have to- s’) and weeks, yup, exploring what each blogger here, each friend is like, what he/she loves, prefers, is passionate about.

I never thought i’d enjoy meeting others as much as i have here lately, as i willingly dedicated more time to do so and decided to sit back and look from the outside for a change;

every 1 page, forgive me: PERSON i visit vibes a unique spark, an authentic someone.It’s so beautiful, rewarding.

It feels like the platform is giving back all I am investing in and it’s just beautiful.

This home platform is the only place where i have met as many genuine, authentic people as i had in my life, & no, i am not exaggerating for the sake of my writing-effect..honest.

This sharing goes out to the “worth” and value of each one of us.

Yes, that worth we always tend to ‘self-destruct’, ignore, or underestimate at every challenge or opportunity to allow ourselves, or others, to do so..

 

 

Story behind how i came across this video (if you can spare some time to read-on):

To be honest, as our Spring semester at university comes to an end soon, and as the warm summer weather and beach season begin to unfold and settle  in Lebanon,(pics taken from my life this past week)

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my students for the past week began to look: a little off-focus, lagging on their academic work, attention, focus, and  they have their heads already on the look-out for plane tickets to visit their families/parents in the summer – understandably as tickets now are way more affordable than later in time for a summer trip after final exams are over for them.

So, tonight, I was really looking for a video to open-up my class with tomorrow to introduce our new theme for the week, but as i thought of my demotivated students at this stage of study, I needed a genuine attempt to “win back” my students, make the best of the remaining sessions together , re-engage them and re-connect with them ..

And then this Jay Shetty came up with a video on “success” (a theme i am coincidentally teaching my students in Business decision-making) and how we define it to ourselves, how the world has all began to be all about,

“if you have the money, you have the success[…]”..

If you’ve met me in my previous blog posts, you’ll deduce or read that I’ve joined the “Educator-career path” only 6 months ago now – having moved away from my corporate finance tracks..

And so, as i pursue my finally-unveiled passion, i felt like i began to assess or evaluate my success in teaching by how less time i spend preparing my lectures, or how much i manage/learn to squeeze into 1 session, or even by how many papers i can correct within an hour or a day

I kind of materialized, horribly, this passion I only unveiled a few months ago, and I realised i was slipping into that trap:

True success (at least mine as an Educator) actually resides in how well can i give my students the chance to be better business leaders and established societal leaders, wherever they go in the future, and whichever corporation they join, people they interact with, and country they reside in.

Honestly, i realised the above not only because of Jay’s video, but also 2 weeks earlier, when my week was over, i had delivered all my classes and for some reason, felt like this particular week, me being an Educator truly made me someone who uses the simple power of thought, i.e. sharing my brain with others, to empower them to spark a change. 

Have a look into what my brain wrote out to one of my British Mentors that night of April 11, 2016:

 

Then, as this blog calls for growing through others, i was not let down;

a sneak peak of the reply and support i received back follows here, simply because i invested the time, humility, and courage to share my authentic self, as naked-ly:

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The reply brings me to another message i’d love to share with you:

Please,never underestimate what you share with your people, whether your students, your family, your mentors, your superiors or people who work for you and/or are under your authority..

You can just make the day, week, or year of 1 person, 1 human being, by simply and genuinely sharing what’s on your mind. At the end of the day, we are all humans and we connect on that: simply being human, so go for it.

I chose another video to show my students, and chose to share this one on finding our spark here with you tonight, hoping it would remind all of us,

WE CAN DO IT:

THIS LIFE, THIS DIFFICULTY, THIS UPCOMING CHALLENGE, THIS NEW PLAN, TRIP, OR UPHILL FIGHT.

May you have a beautiful rest of the evening and days full of your passions in this life.

Truly yours,

Joy.

April 24, 2016 ; 11.26pm

 

The Letter to Fear

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Dearest friends, My People,

A couple conversations about every day struggles and life were initiated this past week of March 7-12, 2016 with individuals very close to my heart, and they made me realize 1 thing:

this platform was initiated because it is about You, my people; so i figured I always share things that were/are attached to people in my circle of experiences, with you, to reflect on or relate to one way or another, but why not allocate now and then, a space for your direct voice and contribution?

I am expecting 2 sharing-s to be delivered into my inbox the next week; two sharing-s i can cut and paste as is onto our platform here, in the name of their respective writers/the persons undergoing this experience wrote-out for us.

And we’ve agreed to put them out here, maybe their voice too helps you one way or another in your life.

So, today, i received a very special something from a certain N.J.

He’s a past acquaintance, someone I have not met in a long while, yet whom i know, has gotten to this point in life: the point where not all people are…that point of a little bit more wisdom and a little bit more understanding of life, what truly matters in it, and how to live it up- literally, regretting absolutely nothing and not dwelling on absolutely any challenge or low point. Simply, he’s so energized with a ‘positivity overload’ that nothing is impossible.

I am compelled to share the words with you, and customized them a bit into the Joy- framework; please, meet:

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I encourage you all, if you are feeling stuck, to sit down one of these days and write your own letter to your own fear. But before you do that, here’s an even more interesting exercise: Allow your fear to write a letter to YOU.

I do this every once in a while, when I’m feeling particularly shaky and unsure of myself.

[Yes, even the “Joy” you met in Blog Post #1 has fears within her ..]

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I give my fear a chance to express itself, formally, in writing. I ask my fear, “What are you actually terrified about, in this situation?” And I make a effort of listening, with respect.

(It’s amazing how seldom we do this — listen to our fear, with respect. We’re always trying to punch it in the face, or kick its ass, or run away from it. But we seldom let it speak.)

I’m always amazed by what comes up. Often, I think I know what I’m afraid of, but when my fear is given a chance to actually speak, I’m surprised at what the real issue is.

The other thing I keep learning, when I let my fear have a chance to make its case, is that my fear is not (contrary to how it often feels) BOTTOMLESS. Fear and anxiety can feel like they have infinite depths, like they are afraid of EVERYTHING, but usually they are just afraid of 2 or 3 very specific things, once you look closely. And sometimes those 2 or 3 three things are pretty reasonable. Usually, the letter that my fear writes to me is quite short, and very precise.

And once I see what those 2 or 3 issues are, what I’m actually afraid of…well, now we can talk about it. Like adults. Like friends.

And that’s when I can write a letter back to fear, thanking it for its thoughts and contributions, but gently explaining what we are going to do now that all the information has been reported.

I know it sounds freaky — to be writing letters to and from various aspects of yourself…but remember: None of us is a SELF; we are all MANY SELVES. What we call a “self” is just a wild mishmash combination of lots and lots of different parts and competing voices. (Anyone who has ever negotiated with herself/himself about whether or not she/he will be going to the gym today knows this: we are a veritable auditorium of rival voices and contrasting opinions.)

But if you can approach all these rival selves with a spirit of friendly curiosity, it can make your head into a more peaceful neighborhood.

It’s all about communication, people. It’s all about communication.

Start with your fear. Ask it what it wants, what it doesn’t want, and why it’s so desperately holding you back from what your creativity and your courage might be asking you to attempt.

Let your fear speak.

Let it write you a letter.

Read the letter with open-minded and open-heart-ed affection.

And then write back to your fear with love and kindness, and respectfully explain your new plan.

Your fear should always be allowed to have a voice, and a seat in the vehicle of your life.

But whatever you do — don’t let your fear DRIVE.

Truly yours,

Joy

March 12, 2016 ; 5:52pm.

When I ‘stopped’ Giving, Life did too

Hello there 🙂 Joy here again.

I  miss employing my time to write to you and sharing with you snippets of my daily lessons since my new job and my re-settlement home, in Lebanon.

It’s been busy on my end, in all good and bad ways but tonight, 3 specific sharings from 3 special readers and life-changers (as i call every one of ‘my people’), got to me in ways i cannot possibly explain.

They are: C.E, J.Y, and E.H.; 27, 36, 29 years old respectively.

I decided i cannot delay my next Blog Post#2 anymore even if it meant going sleepless for a few days now and falling a little behind in my professional tasks. You’ll make it all worth, of that i am certain through the time you spend reading my posts and/or your comments below. 

Publishing this post  climaxed simultaneously with my wish to have this post ready, so that a dear friend traveling by the early morning hours has something he loves to read, whilst waiting on the flight back to his (dreaded:p) job. 

At this point in time, Dec.2015 – Jan.4, 2016, I can confidently say, I am healthy and warm at heart, unlike my last Christmas and NYE, spent ‘broken’ in a hospital abroad (more on this in Blog Post#1). Nonetheless, I still conclude, yet again, the exact same life lesson learned following one of the most dramatic incidents I survived exactly 1 year ago:

You, ‘others’ i.e. my people, family, friends, and now audience mold me into the amazing person i am becoming, as testified by individuals in my networks these past 2 months : Nov. & Dec. 2015 (I’ll show you, just hang in there for a minute).

You, and only you, are the part of my life that makes me feel alive, bold, driven, confident, full of a sense of purpose, and a love for preserving a “me”-time that I exploit by pouring my heart out here to you, no matter the pressure, overtime hours, or confusion within my new career and new life back home.

How do i know that?FullSizeRender (3).jpg

Your wishes, live, electronic, or via the loveliest hand-made ca
rds posted to my address this Christmas and New Year 2015 from across the globe constituted my universe for 2016.

You have been so generous to me, and now you offered me a new page, a new year 2016 that has no failures, heartbreaks, pain, or mistakes yet. I now get to try again; you do too. It’s a fresh chance to write our stories and upcoming life events. It feels amazing to have been blessed like that!

Digging into Comments received from you since Oct.31, 2015 to-date tonight, I finally summoned the courage to fix-up my Blog Post#2. Two whole months have passed without me checking on the life of my own blog and the life of each one of you, my people, here on our platform.

I sincerely apologize; I have let day-to-day burdens, trivial activities deviate my attention from my true calling: you lot and my own students. I have also failed to keep the promise I made: to overcome my fear of leaving the comfort zone and going public without striving for ‘perfection’ in my sharing-s.

Truth is, your personal, touching stories shared with me via my social media networks have overwhelmed me, entirely so, following my Blog Post#1 and my growing Good Day Emails habit/chain. They make me feel ever-more accountable and responsible to be here for you more than ever before, to share every bit of the life lessons/reflections I encounter daily post-my 2014 accident.

How can i not lead my life with the broadest smile, optimism, enthusiasm, and how can i not overcome every one of those’rainy’  days that corner each of us, when i keep being empowered by more and more messages that go like this:

Your messages every day make me feel like somehow, there’s someone out there who wishes me – and the people you care for – all the best for each and every day.. It’s a beautiful gesture […] you’ve shown me how much it can make a difference to see that someone out there cares, that there’s someone who thinks of you.. Thank you for being your beautiful self[…]

[…]in the midst of trying to cope […], I starting reading your emails and your blog.. And in some way, it changed a lot.. I started writing down little things that made me happy.

Those were sent to me by my loveliest Miss C.E. She’s my powerhouse!

This is so beautiful Ms. Joy! I am so proud of you, beyond any words. I hope you know you are courageous and brave and unique, and I hope you never let anyone tell you different things.[…] Please share other stories with me when they go live[…]”

Words shared by a truly beautiful person, inside out, Miss E.G., definitely a Keeper that one!

[…]this is one of the most beautiful readings I have read. […]all the people you touch, are unable to express, what you have done for them nor the gratitude they have for you. No matter how many thank yous and wonderful notes you get, they will never truly tell you of the difference you are making, nor make you feel appreciated for the great lengths that are needed, to be the person you are.[…]So please, never stop.

The above is the very first Comment on my Blog!!  I doubt i’ll ever forget how reading that one “felt” from my new acquaintance, thus friend, M.

Last but not least, a person ever more close to my heart, E., visited Lebanon for the holidays this Christmas, and throughout, all he said were words of encouragement to boost MY  confidence and encourage ME  to step on my fears, “why have you not blogged since your first post? It’s the perfect time, end of the year, resolutions, reflections..the people need you;  it’ll be perfect, just go for it, be you!!

Why would he and all others give me their time and trust,(and this applies to each one of us), while I am supposedly the one who’s trying to add a little ray of sunshine to their life..? Well, that is the obvious bit i tell you:

evearnold489370.jpgYou get from life whatever you give into it –

When you give without expecting a return, you receive ten-folds of whatever you give in (from Blog Post#1)

[…]u make my mornings :)[…]“, a Miss M.A. shared a week ago.

So, do you see all the above-received? Do you believe me now if I emphasize yet again: we only truly grow through “others”?

I am horrified though that my second, third, fourth…twentieth blog post may not be ‘as good as’ my first or up to your expectations; so, i just refrained from posting them to-date. I saved their  drafts in a folder on my desktop since Nov.6, 2015. They just sat there, while I felt miserable for not sharing them, to become live stories or shared lessons among us. 

My November 2015: the worm phase

Yet, I am not ashamed of admitting I have hesitated, doubted, let myself go slack, slide through life for a while. That was my November 2015 month; I was what my Mum calls, a “worm” – truly, she does call me that when i go through that odd phase .

It’s when I let myself be an observer, and in that position, I stopped giving: in my prayer and faith, in my thoughts, in my relationship with my parents, siblings, in my sacred cross-border friendships too.Yes, i allowed myself to feel short on time, to need more hours in the day, to justify me not  taking the time to write my blog, my happy-diary, or write some of my closest friends, and I justified myself with the most ridiculous alibis…

In a word, I let myself be selfish and was fully aware of it. 

Thus, my “worm lesson”; Everything went wrong in my life, and i cannot wait to share my evidence.

It is so intertwined,seriously, it is mad to believe how the events occurred one after the other like dominoes, but i only just realized they were all connected to ‘Me going all commando on selfishness and introversion’:

November 6, 2015: Lesson 1

You will be criticized; however, what you are criticized for will become your: #1 Strength and #1 reason for others to Respect you

It is never ever easy to digest feedback about your performance, whether in the workplace or in society at large. On Nov.6, I had a whirlwind of mixed emotions.

a) Professionally:

In my Blog Post #1, I hinted towards a new job offer I’ve taken on; I am now a full-time university Instructor and Senior Collaborative Provision Officer for student affairs, development, and guidance in the British School of Business, offering a franchised British degree for : Undergraduate, MBA, and MSc. Events Programmes.

That is, all aspects of my teaching and admin tasks within my work can only be completed only in coordination with 1 – 2 partner universities in the UK. Personally, my greatest challenge to-date is the instructing bit, as it is my first experience ever in this field. I have started out now without prior or proper induction, mentoring, shadowing, coaching, or exposure, and I already have one lesson well-learned the hard way:

Even though I (like you may) have taken multiple workshops and read fascinating books that albeit taught us how to be a good sport or a diplomat vis-à-vis criticism, it was just impossible to apply all theories or practices to the words I heard that day:

I had only delivered a few sessions of one of my Finance courses, when the  Academic Committee called upon me to evaluate my ‘delivery and performance’. Honestly, at first I was caught off-guard. I did not expect any feedback that soon on my course delivery. Yet, there i sat, when i learned about the ‘commercial’ aspect of ‘education’:

the client is always right.Only in my case, it’s the student.

I was addressed politely, but very firmly. I truly listened closely to what the Committee had to say; trust me on that one, I felt horrible, my blood was racing, and I could hear my heart beat at a ‘zingillion’ second. It felt it was about to pop out of my chest.

Partly, I was scared, and for a few minutes, I became defensive; yet, I was also eager to know more because I knew the only way to learn how to teach and to find my own way of sharing my knowledge/character was through others. It’s just the way  I am wired, and I genuinely believe we are all alike in this sense.

Truth 1 :

My day could not have been a worse one. I was being judged, brutally so, and i partly do not blame them because being an Educator consists not of selling yourself or how good you are, but selling how good of a person, a motivational speaker,an understanding, but also firm miracle-maker you are to help your own students sell themselves the right way.

b) Socially or personally:

November 20, 2015:

Please don’t take this the wrong way, but could u please remove me from your daily mailing list.” 

I don’t think sending this kind of messages will help you […] Please stop sending them to me.”

Yes, believe it or not, these are real comments I received from some people who were once in my genuine Daily Good Day Emails aimed at ‘brightening’ the day of a person. Yet, they are people I respect the most and ones i am ever more grateful for, truly. They were mainly the reason why I learned that I am not everyone’s cup of tea and I should not assume that I am, ever. My ways and my outlook to life may be invasive or irritating to some; I am only human and I can only be myself.

Truth 2:

These comments opened my eyes in ways perhaps no one else would dare, and i respect them for having voiced their opinions. Today, I’m getting better at self-auditing my works and strategies and re-evaluating different ways of getting my message through the ways i intend it for my people.  I cannot deny it though: I was indeed irritated. Deep down, I felt sad to have sensed a certain harshness in those comments.

But with every one of those people who come to correct you, or correct something in you, there is a lesson to learn.

All in all, worm November was a nightmare, but i only understood why when Busy-bee December 2015 came along, and when my attitude, actions, and outlook to everything changed. Why did they change?

Easy; December festivities, sales, decorations, good spirits, BUT ALSO, it is the anniversary of my accident-only this year, i was so warm and fuzzy inside, surrounded by beautiful people.

Hence, I assure you that I too, have my fears, my hesitations, my insecurities, weirdness, and complicated bits within me. Nonetheless, to be fair and kind to myself as well -another life motto – I have not been entirely disengaged, if i dig a little deeper beyond my worm-phase November onto Busy-bee December. 

Please stay posted to enjoy my next Blog Post #3, entitled: 

When I ‘started’ Giving, Life did too, a sequel to this one that highlights the contrast I experienced when I ‘stopped’ giving v/s when I hung onto my genuine love to give/share and grow through others.

… …

Teasers on Blog Post #3:

Busy-bee December: when I gave into life, life offered a bountiful harvest

I think i am pretty sure Your stories and sharings have expanded my Good Day Chain, gradually but steadily because i have now doubled ‘my others’, i.e. all of you who make me who i am today and who help me grow out of comfort zone, literally and metaphorically in this life.

Amidst the intimidating responsibility Your stories and engagement thrust upon me, you helped me also discern a unique opportunity to expand my Good Day Emails to touch a broader circle of people too. Blog Post #3 will tell you how it went: coming very soon!

Stay tuned you beautiful people.

Truly yours,

Joy

Jan.5, 2016.