All posts by Guijarro

Relationships – Help on How to Decide if She’s (He’s) a Keeper

Songs about relationships

“She was a perfect prayer in a desperate hour.”

– Stupid Boy by Keith Urban,


Chino Y Nacho

Aqui hay Amor  ( Here There is Love)
– by Chino y Nacho

Tú tienes la magia, la sabiduría,
Tienes la práctica y la teoría…
Yo quiero ponerme viejo, pero a tu lado.

You have the magic, the wisdom,
You have the experience and the theory…
I want to grow old, but at your side.


If you had an emotion that felt shipwrecked, I’d be a sail ship coming to your island of desire.

– Cuando Me Enamoro – Julio Iglesias


antaeus2Antaeus, son of Gaia, the Earth goddess , grew stronger each time he touched the earth –

That’s how I feel every time I’m with you, each time I touch you, each time I hold you. God, how I love it.

“I hope you never leave… Your music is so hard to find.”     – from My Heart is a Stereo by Gym Class Heroes

Rules To Help Decide if She (or He) is a “Keeper” –

  1. Is she happy to see you? Do you see happiness in her eyes when she’s with you?
  2. Does she fight fair? Do she stay on the issue that bothers her and does she say what she wants, or does she resort to personal attacks and use the terms “you never…”  or “you always…” ?
  3. Is she easy to be with? Do you feel relaxed or relieved when you are with her, or does it require effort on your part? Do you laugh with each other? Does your spirit feel more buoyant when you’re with her, or does your spirit feel drained  or even just a little deflated after being with her?
  4. Does she inspire you to pursue things that bring you joy or raise forgotten dreams, or does she “kill your [nascent] vibes”?
  5. Is she a good listener? And, if you come up with an idea, does she build on it and make it even better?
  6. Does she enjoy some of the things you really like to do –  concerts, roller coasters, art exhibits, dancing, travel and exploring, kayaking, camping, walking, architecture, sailboating, (fill in the blanks)?

If she or he does a number of these things, especially the first three,  you just may have yourself a “keeper”

Never Assume. Never expect others to read your mind.

“In any kind of relationship we can make the assumption that others know what we think, and we don’t have to say what we want. They are going to do what we want because they know us so well. If they don’t do what we want, what we assume they should do, we feel hurt and think, “How could you do that? You should know.” Again, we make the assumption that the other person knows what we want. A whole drama is created because we make this assumption and then put more assumptions on top of it.”       –   Miguel Ruiz

As a young child, I thought that it should be obvious how I felt and that others should act accordingly. I found that people often were not observant, or were preoccupied or distracted.

Words are a poor way of communicating. I often can interpret a simple sentence in three different ways, so I ask for clarification (this drives my girlfriend crazy who thinks what she’s saying is obvious). But words are far more helpful than making unilateral assumptions as Ruiz says.  There have been many more problems in this world from under-communicating than from over-communicating.





Dancing in Nice and Fire Ants

French Couple Dancing in Nice.

Several weeks ago, there was a horrific slaughter by a Muslim extremist who planned for a year and then rented the largest truck he could and evilly plowed through a large crowd of families with children and babies, couples, elderly grandparents, friends, tourists and visitors out to celebrate the holiday, fireworks, music and life.

Before the fireworks, a band was playing and a couple danced together Niece couple and enjoyed the music (Yea, France ! – when I read the article, I checked the video to see if one of the dancers was a friend). If I ever had to go “out” in that type of situation, dancing with a wonderful partner is not a bad option  (I’d try to get her out of the way first).

Two individuals made heroic attempts to thwart the madman. A motorcyclist bravely tried to stop the driver seated above him in the moving cab, but ended up under the truck wheels. A second man jumped into the cab window when the truck was slowed by some obstacles and fought the driver and kept him occupied until the gendarmes arrived and shot the driver. In his wake, the truck driver intentionally killed 84 strangers – men, women and children and injured a hundred more. This was a sad, senseless act.

Down south, we have invasive critters called fire ants. A single ant bite will get your immediate attention. Their survival strategy is, upon disturbance of the mound, ALL the ants come streaming out to attack and bite the fire out of the intruder. Their lesson is so effective, you quickly learn to pay attention to where you ( your friends, small children, pets) are standing or sitting outside.  When situations like Nice or the Pulse nightclub occur, we should adopt the same strategy – everyone goes after the destroyer – regardless.





Triumphs in Life – Darby, Jennifer and the Admiral.

Derby –  Lucky Pioneer

Derby was born with deformed front legs. Angled down, Derby moved by pulling himself on his chest with his elbows and pushing himself with his back legs. Tara Anderson decided to help the dog.  She got him a two wheel cart that supported his front, and that helped a bit, but it was clumsy and his mobility was limited as was his ability to play with other dogs. So, she went in another direction – using the new 3D design and printing technology. Click on the picture for Derby Part 1.

Derby - two deformed legs

They experimented with  different approaches and were able to get some initial success. While the prosthetics were small in height and therefore more controllable attached to his elbow and upper leg, his  body still  tilted downward versus the normal horizontal. So Tara got her crew together and worked on a design that would allow Darby to have a straight back and try to find solutions to different problems. Click on the picture for Derby Part 2 .

Derby with Prosthetics

We are fortunate to live in the age we do.


Here is another parallel situation that involves what is inside our hearts and thinking.

“Never Say Can’t”

Jennifer Bricker – Exceptional Faith Overcomes Major Handicap and Builds an Exceptional Life

Sometimes things happen that we don’t have a choice in or want. But what we do with the hand we’re dealt can make all the difference. It takes determination and Jen Bricker as a baby. Born without legs.perseverance. The video below is about a baby girl that was born with no – zero – legs.  She was left in the hospital after birth by her natural parents because of her lack of legs and the life long challenge of trying to raise such a person. Along comes another couple who recognize the challenge and burden, but they adopt the baby and raise her like her handicap wasn’t a “problem”- like their three healthy boys. How crazy were they? They were crazy enough to think “Can’t isn’t in our vocabulary.”  Click on the picture to watch the video – it’s worthwhile.

Brickner 3


Life Lessons from Seal Training

The third video is a Commencement Speech by Admiral McRaven at the University of Texas in 2014. He is a Navy Seal and 4 star Admiral heading Special Forces Operations. He was head of the unit that planned and led the Osama Bin Laden operation.

These are the 10 lessons he learned in his early Seals Training Program. It’s around 19 minutes, but he has some good points that are applicable to life. Click on the picture to see the video.

McRaven (2)

Odds ‘n Ends – Comments on Life

Here are some thoughts about Life and Love.

“Love, built on beauty, soon as beauty, dies.”
– John Donne

“If only our eyes saw souls instead of bodies, how different our ideal of beauty would be”.  -unk

“I measured love by the extent of my jealousy”
-Graham Greene, The End of the Affair

“Love her, love her, love her! If she favours you, love her. If she wounds you, love her. If she tears your heart to pieces – and as it gets older and stronger, it will tear deeper – love her, love her, love her!”
– Charles Dickens, Great Expectations

“Love is the answer, but while you are waiting for the answer, sex raises some pretty good questions”
– Woody Allen

“Isn’t what we mean by ‘falling in love’ a kind of sickness and craziness, an illusion, a blindness to what the loved person is really like”
(Sigmund Freud)

“I don’t want to live, I want to love first and live incidentally”
– Zelda Fitzgerald, 1920

“In every living thing there is the desire for love”
– DH Lawrence

“You should be kissed and often, and by someone who knows how”
– Gone With The Wind, Margaret Mitchell

Love [is] a temporary insanity curable by marriage or by removal of the patient from the influences under which he incurred the disorder. – Ambrose Bierce

“… I used to be scared about marriage. I was like: Wow – 50 percent of all marriages … end up lasting…
for-ever.”                                                – Joe Wong, commedian

“All I’ve wished for in life is to belong, to love and be loved, without doubt, without judgement, without condition.”                                              – Grace Kelly

“… It’s a big world out there, and we’re going to play on every inch of it.”                                      – web commercial.

Do you feel it? I feel energy, I feel lightness, I feel wonder, I feel comfortable, I feel my self, I feel inspired, I feel joyful, I feel like dancing, I feel like exploring, I feel like making and building,  I feel like asking and talking, I feel playful, I feel excited with my eyes bright and wide open, I feel breathing deeply, and smelling the cool, perfumed breeze, and relishing the sun’s warmth, and I feel it all – even more – with you here.                                                                                                – Guido

Happy Music

Happy Music

Fanny Lu - singer and song writer
                                          Fanny Lu – Singer

Here is a song that I enjoy listening to. It’s by Fanny Lu, a tall, blond  singer/ song writer (and industrial engineer), and, like Shakira, she’s from Columbia.

In the song, her love has left. She doesn’t know where he’s gone, and she’s  lost track of the days. He doesn’t have to bring her flowers or chocolates. He doesn’t have to  explain. She just wants him back – to feel his heat, his caress, and to hear him say he loves her – and that “she’s the woman he most admires” [curious].  She feels sorry for him night after night with her. She knows she’s not perfect, but her love already has its owner and its price.

There is something about the song – particularly in the chorus that is playful, bubbly, and full of life, and the song is hopeful. She personalizes the song with “A-haa!” and “Ay Diosito” (like “baby God”), “Ay ya yay”, laughing, and “Viene! Viene!” (Come, Come!).  Even the accordion is right. My body moves to the rhythm and wants to get up and move or dance. I just can’t feel other than happy listening to it. I play it as a treat when I go walking.

Here’s the song. Hope you like it.

I Don’t Ask You for Flower (No Te Pido Flores) – Fanny Lu


Accordions and Mexican Music

Includes Accordion and don't forget the Tuba (talk about a heavy metal band!)
Includes Accordion and don’t forget the Tuba

Speaking of curious, have you ever listened to Mexican Music and thought that sounds like a polka and wondered “how did that get there”?
And why is the accordion so popular an instrument (kinda like Alabama’s song  – “…if you’re going to play in Monterrey, you’ve got to have an accordion in the band…”)?

Maximilian – Emperor for 3 years

Seems there were a lot of Austrian, German and Polish immigrants to Mexico in the later 1800’s (including aspiring Austrian invader Emperor Maximilian) who naturally brought their music with them. Many of these settlers located in Northern Mexico bringing instruments from home including the accordion.  One stream of this influence evolved into Norteño music which has become popular as far south as Columbia and Chile. So, if you’re listening to Mexican or Latin American music and it sounds like a polka, it is – Mexican style!



Relationships – How to Communicate Love to Each Other

Some Random Thoughts on Love.

I saw an old couple, probably in their 70’s, coming out of a building holding hands (after all the years). I went over and complimented them saying it was nice to see people holding hands. She smiled and said laughingly “We hold each other up”.

… go inside and listen to your body, because your body will never lie to you. Your mind will play tricks, but the way you feel in your heart, in your guts, is the truth.”     – Miguel Ruiz

“Beauty begins the moment you decide to be yourself” – Coco Channel

“Loving her is a splendid adventure”  – Steve Maraboli

“She was like the moon –  part of her was always hidden” – unknown

“She always had that about her- that look of otherness, of eyes that see things much too far and of thoughts that wander off the edge of the world” – Joanne Harris

“She is her own kind of beautiful”

“One universe, nine planets, 204 countries, 809 islands, seven seas, and I had the privilege of meeting you” – unknown

How to Communicate Love to Each Other

Ran across a writer named Gary Chapman who had some interesting and useful insights into communications for couples in particular and people in general. One of his books is “The Five Love Languages”. After many years working with people, he finally discerned patterns of how people communicate love to each other.

Acts of Service to help your partner

He mentioned a couple that sought counseling where the man showed his love to her by doing all kinds of “Acts of Service” to help her. He took out the garbage, vacuumed the house, washed the dishes, cut the grass, made dinners when he got home first and so on. Chapman started wondering what she did around the house. When she spoke, she said that he never talked to her and was always busy doing things.

There was another couple whereReceiving Quality Time is one way people feel loved one of them especially valued doing things together. It could be as simple as going out to a restaurant and just looking at each other and talking (like young couples).  This Chapman called “Quality Time”

Another couple just likes to have physical contact Snuggle3and snuggle on the  sofa, or go walking holding hands, or putting their hand on the other’s leg while they were driving. Sometimes, both people enjoy reading while they snuggle together.  Chapman described this as “Physical Contact”.


Other people take delight whenGift2 they are surprised with a gift. It doesn’t have to be big or expensive, they just appreciate the thought and the novelty. It could even be flowers from the yard. These types of people communicate through “Gifts”.

Some people loved to hear words of appreciation Appreciationsuch as “you’re wonderful”, or “that color looks really well on you”, or “that’s one of the many reasons I love you”. or calling her “Beauty” or “Bella”. These “Words of Affirmation” are the way some people perceive they are loved.

We are all different. We all enjoy receiving any of the Five Languages but we primarily work in one or two of the languages. Chapman thinks it is helpful  when searching for a relationship if you can find a person who has the same or similar style of communicating love.  It’s like speaking a language and the other person speaks English too, but may prefer another language, so one can be bilingual – say she likes to speak French. That may be fine if you like French. However, if she likes German, and you do not enjoy German, it may be a difficult row to hoe over the long run.

Chapman pointed out that the primary language could shift given where one is in life. A Mom with two screaming babies could become very appreciative of “Acts of Service” if, when the Dad gets home, he jumps in to help her and feeds and changes the babies, bathes them, plays with them and puts them to bed. In later years, she may revert back to her original language(s).

Wanting to compare what I thought she would say to what she actually says she prefers, I asked my partner if she liked gifts. She said she didn’t need anything. In responding if she preferred Acts of Service done around the house. She responded they didn’t do anything FOR her. I do know that she is very attentive to what I say and specific words I use (by the way guys, the word “fine”, as in “you look fine” does not work well. If she looks good or great, say that. She may have gone to a lot of trouble to choose that dress and get her hair just right). She is also very tactile and loves it when I put my arm around her. She also likes some Quality Time, so I’m planning an adventure vacation for the summer.

These Languages of Love also work for kids. Chapman had a young boy who would run at him and hug him when he got home. Physical Contact was obviously important to him.  His daughter was different. When she saw him, she would say “Daddy, come with me. I want to show you something.” Quality one-on-one time was important to her.

So, figure out how you like to receive love and how your partner, room-mate, family members like to receive love.

How to Apologize

Chapman offered some further insights. Another counselor told him that she had noticed that people had different ways of apologizing and depending on the circumstances some ways did or didn’t work.

One way to apologize is to express regret – I sorry that I…  . Chapman says DO NOT include a “but” in the response that justifies , excuses or explains your actions.

Another way ( or continuation) is to accept responsibility for the act. “That was totally my fault.”

It may be important to some people to offer restitution – “What can I do to make this up to you?”

The next component may be to show evidence of trying to change behavior.

The last element in the apology is to “ask forgiveness”. Do not assume they know you are asking for it. State it.

Chapman says that we learn forgiveness from our families and how they practice it can vary widely. So, if you mess up (particularly if you did it big time), you may want to include all the components to make sure that you include the particular manner the other person understands.


How to get through a Breakup for Guys

“One is easily fooled by that which one loves” – Molière

“If you said goodbye to me tonight
There would still be music left to write”
– Billy Joel in For the Longest Time.

“Why would you ever choose to be with
someone who is not excited to be with you?” – Mark Manson

“All farewells should be sudden, when forever.” – Byron

Thought there should be equal time for guys who have just gone through a breakup. First, it does hurt. and second, know that you will heal with time. Breakups happen a lot. Everyone goes through a couple of relational train wrecks. It’s part of learning what you want.

Sometimes, it’s a surprise. You get along well, enjoy being together, there are a lot of really amazing  fits and commonalities, no major fights, it gets better day by day, you both have smiles in your eyes, you really like being together, you increasingly think this is long term, and then she announces she’s out.

Other times, there’s plenty of evidence – disagreements, one or the other (or both) doesn’t feel good when you’re together, and finally one has had enough and ends it.

Sometimes it’s just rejection. It’s harder if betrayal is involved.

Women make mistakes too.

We all make mistakes. We all have different perspectives, different priorities, different interpretations.  Sometimes decisions are made for the wrong reasons. Sometimes we may reflect back and think “her decision was really stupid”. But, so be it. It’ s what it is. Let it be and move on.

“Humans hardly know what they want, how they want it, or when they want it.” – Miguel Ruiz

The Teacher Appears.

It is said that when the student is ready, the teacher appears.  Perhaps, the lady was there for us to learn something about life, about what we really do want.

Intent versus Outcome

Sometimes, what we want is very different from what we get. In retrospect, it can be funny.

Vettriani and Lucy and Charlie Brown snatch the football, Peanuts
Relationships – Intent versus Outcome – Vettriani vs. Peanuts

The Rolling Stones had a song about that:

“You can’t always get what you want
You can’t always get what you want
But if you try sometimes well you just might find
You get what you need.”

It’s Not Personal

Don Miguel Ruiz, in his The Four Agreements, states that we all are products of our experience. We often project world views, or our own interpretations of what someone does or who they are. If someone doesn’t fill in the intention, reason, purpose of something, we’ll do it for them (probably incorrectly). At the end of a friend’s relationship, he said the woman made some comments to him that were strange. With time to reflect on it, he knew her conclusions weren’t right, and that for her to say those things meant that she had projected some of her own assumptions that weren’t correct (and which she didn’t verify with him).  She had run a mental video of her own assumptions about him that didn’t reflect his realities at that time, and made her decision based on her own life views.  This is the same mechanism when you see a person meet a total stranger and behave badly to them even though the new person doesn’t know them and has never done a thing to them.

Search If There’s a Pattern.

Take the opportunity to see if there if there is any pattern recurring in your relationships – e.g. the type of people you have been going out with, or a similar category of complaints about you. Learn from it. If you don’t put some energy in changing it, you will continue to get the same outcome.

That’s Her Loss

Know that in a relatively short period of time, you’ll get yourself back together. As with a physical injury, you will heal. You will find a wonderful person that will be happy that your old relation didn’t work, and she will say out loud about your old friend – “Her loss”.

Some of God’s Greatest Gifts are Unanswered Prayers.

Sometimes we think that a breakup is not right/ unfair/ unjustified/ a misunderstanding… and we wish and even pray that a relationship happen or gets “saved”.

Garth  Brooks wrote a song  that speaks to that:

“Just the other night at a hometown football game
My wife and I ran into my old high school flame
And as I introduced them the past came back to me
And I couldn’t help but think of the way things used to be

She was the one that I’d wanted for all times
And each night I’d spend prayin’ that God would make her mine
And if he’d only grant me this wish I wished back then
I’d never ask for anything again

Sometimes I thank God for unanswered prayers
Remember when you’re talkin’ to the man upstairs
That just because he doesn’t answer doesn’t mean he don’t care
Some of God’s greatest gifts are unanswered prayers

She wasn’t quite the angel that I remembered in my dreams
And I could tell that time had changed me
In her eyes too it seemed
We tried to talk about the old days
There wasn’t much we could recall
I guess the Lord knows what he’s doin’ after all

And as she walked away and I looked at my wife
And then and there I thanked the good Lord
For the gifts in my life

Sometimes I thank God for unanswered prayers
Remember when you’re talkin’ to the man upstairs
That just because he may not answer doesn’t mean he don’t care
Some of God’s greatest gifts are unanswered

Some of God’s greatest gifts are all too often unanswered…
Some of God’s greatest gifts are unanswered prayers”

“Unanswered Prayers” – by Garth Brooks

Clear the space for what you want.

It’s important to get through the pain. But stop moping around. You have a choice of either replaying what was good and how wonderful it was AND how miserable you feel lacking that (over and over again), OR you can turn your focus, like a flash light, away from that negativity and non-productive thought and feeling, and use your time and energy to build something you do want.  You can keep digging around in the hole you are in, or use your precious time and energy doing things that will help you build the type of life you want. You have to make the effort to make a clearing for what you do want, make the space for it to happen.

I Just Haven’t Met You Yet.

The Census says over half of the US population is single – 128 million people.  In a  lifetime, there are probably 12 to 20 people you could meet with whom you could live with happily. In just this country there are probably 8 million people of the opposite sex that are withing 5 years of your age. Even if you are really finicky and like only one in every thousand females, there are 8,000 women that you could be happy spending the rest of your life with (just in this country. There are 196+ countries [depending on the day]).  You just have to get out there – JUST SHOW UP! The great philosopher Pooh said ” You can’t stay in your corner of the forest and wait for people to come to  you. You have to go to them, sometimes.” Henry Cloud says – if you only wait for the right person to show up at your doorstep, you’re going to end up with a Jehovah’s Witness or a delivery person.

Life’s Rule of Irony #1.

The more you go out, the more people you get to know – the more you will find things that you do want in your ultimate partner,  the more confident you will feel about yourself and the more natural you will act, the more you will be able to not give a f– about personal rejection, which will allow you to use “Life’s Rules of Irony Number 1”, the less you give a f– about an outcome, the more attractive you will become, and the more likely you will get it. The reverse corollary is equally true. Those people who care desperately about the outcome of something  will transmit that vibe and others will move back away from such a strong negative feeling.

Don’t Spend Your Present in the Past.

I know a divorced woman who was looking for a new life partner. She was a successful insurance sales person who learned well not to take rejection personally.  She was very particular and patient. If one person didn’t pan out, she took the attitude “Next! (and, implicitly, don’t let the door hit you on the backside)”.  She didn’t spend a lot of time in the past.

Keep your eyes and thoughts on the present where you are truly living. Walk towards your goals but stay focused on the now of the journey. That’s the attitude that will keep you moving towards your goals. The past cannot be changed.         Move On

Here are two general rules for breakups – and for life in general:

  1. Do not spend your time on people who do not spend their time on you.
  2. Do not spend your time with people who don’t make you feel good, uplifted and alive.

When you feel stronger, follow Rumi’s advice:

“Set your life on fire and seek out only those who will fan the flames.”

Music for Guys to Get Past a Breakup

Surprises of Life

Singing and Living Blindly

Got a surprise yesterday. I heard a song on the radio by Andrea Bocelli in a duet with a beautiful, clear, but unidentified,  female voice singing a classic latin love song – “Quizas, Quizas, Quizas”.  The song is about the early stage of a relationship – the singer wants the other to commit, but she wants to think about it and answers “perhaps, perhaps, perhaps”.

Mystery Singer

I was curious to find out who the female singer was and went on youtube to see if it could shed some light on her.  The first thing that came up was a segment from Dancing With The Stars with a duet between Andrea and, unexpectedly, Jennifer Lopez- and her voice matched.  During the song, the camera was close to the singers. Andrea kept his eyes closed, and I thought he must be really concentrating on his singing and feeling this song. But, it was interesting to watch the interaction of the two.  As they started to sing, Jennifer lighJaylo and Andrea (2)tly touched his chest. There was gentle touching of each other’s arms and, at times, Jennifer would softly touch his back or chest. There was delicate interaction and unusually good chemistry between the two. They sang beautifully together with Jennifer improvising and calling him “amor” (love) in her answering.

Odd Response

When the song was over, Jennifer gave him a hug with a big, sparkling smile and he smiled back, but, puzzlingly,  he didn’t open his eyes to look at the beautiful, vibrant woman embracing him.

Andrea Jaylo 2 (2) Continue reading Surprises of Life

Help build a Complaint Free World and Improve Your Happiness and Communications

“Man invented language to satisfy his deep need to complain.”
– Lillie Tomlinlillie



Want an “easy” challenge that will improve your life and your communication?

Go 21 days without saying a complaint. You can think a complaint, but if you voice it, you re-start the 21 day clock over again.

Why 21 days? Psychologists say that it takes  21 days to form a new habit.

We usually think of ourselves as non-complainers. However, the average person complains 15 to 30 times a day without even being aware of it.

In reality, to stop complaining takes, on the average,  4 to 8 months (can you do better?) .

What is a complaint?

It is defined as the expression of grief, pain or discontent. There are times when it is appropriate to express those feelings. But, 30 times a day?

The point is to speak neutral, true facts directly and only to a person who can affect the change that you seek.

Telling your friend the soup was served cold is a complaint. The friend can’t correct that. Telling the waiter the neutral, true fact that “the soup was cold” can correct the short-coming. Saying to the waiter “How dare you bring me cold soup?” will create an entirely different interaction.

Telling your friend what terrible things your partner has done is complaining. Telling your partner how you feel and what specifically they did  that bothered you in a factual, neutral way, and what you want them to do instead in the future – isn’t complaining – it’s communicating.

Our Lives are created by our thoughts. Our words indicate what we are thinking.

You cannot complain your way to health, happiness and success.

Complaining keeps us  focused on the problem and not the solution.

Why do we complain?

People complain for several reasons including:

  • to get attention
  • avoid action
  • to pre-excuse poor performance
  • to brag
  • to control others

The mouth says what brain thinks. The brain is the manufacturer and you and your mouth are the consumer.

If  the brain is complaining, but you stop saying the complaints i.e.  the customer stops buying the product, then the Brain retools with a different product and begins to think more useful thoughts. Another sage said that our thoughts become our words. Our words become our actions. And our actions become our lives.

So, what should the goal be?

The goal is to name what it is you want in your life and focus on what is good in your life. That will draw what you want to you.

I tried the No Complaint challenge and was surprised how many months it took me to accomplish it. I also became very attuned to the amount of complaining that goes on pretty universally.

This program can not only change an individual, but it can also change a  family, a work environment and even a national environment ( the Complaint Free World people are shooting for a world environment change – talk about “going big”.).  When people don’t support complaining by not giving complainers their time and attention, then  complainers start to feel awkward and they either recognize that they are complaining, or they move out and on. Again, this isn’t not telling the truth, but it is telling the factual, neutral truth only to the person who can do something about the subject.

To learn more about the challenge, here’s the web site and the book detailing the challenge:



How to recover from a Breakup – for Women

“The heart will break, but broken live on”  (Lord Byron)

“Why would you ever choose to be with
someone who is not excited to be with you?” (Mark Manson)

“All farewells should be sudden, when forever.”   (Lord Byron)

Get Back to Your Wonderful Self!

I spoke with a good friend who’s going through a tough patch right now including a breakup. Breakups happen – a lot. So, this is for her and anyone else coming back and recovering from a breakup.

Never take anything personally

It’s tough breaking up – especially if it’s been a long relation, but it happens. Don Miguel Ruiz had a unique take on this in his book “The Four Agreements”. One of the Agreements is “Never take anything personally.” People work with what they were taught, and what they believe, their biases, their prior judgments. If a person says something, another person will fill in around what was said with their own assumptions. Similarly, if something wasn’t said, they will paint in around that with their assumptions. Many times people don’t understand and rather than clarify with a question, they make assumptions about what was said. They end up having this “story” about other person and the way things are, which may have nothing to do who that person really is. He says “Whatever happens around you, don’t take it personally… Nothing other people do is because of you. It is because of themselves.”  This is the same mechanism in how a person can behave terribly to a complete stranger. It isn’t personal.

“If someone is not treating you with love and respect, it is a gift if they walk away from you. If that person doesn’t walk away, you will surely endure many years of suffering with him or her. Walking away may hurt for a while, but your heart will eventually heal. Then you can choose what you really want. You will find that you don’t need to trust others as much as you need to trust yourself to make the right choices.”

“If you live in a past dream, you don’t enjoy what is happening right now because you will always wish it to be different than it is. There is no time to miss anyone or anything because you are alive. Not enjoying what is happening right now is living in the past and being only half alive. This leads to self pity, suffering and tears.”

“True justice is paying only once for each mistake. True injustice is paying more than once for each mistake.”

“Why being dumped by a man is good for you.”

Sarah Vine, a journalist, wrote a column “Why being dumped by a man is good for you”.  She talks about Katy Colins whose fiance abandoned her at the alter. She quotes Katy: “His decision, though devastating at the time, was the wake-up call l needed.” Sarah then states that “a very similar thing happened to me in my early 30s. Like Katy, I was deeply traumatized – but being unceremoniously dumped by the man I thought was “The One” was the best thing that ever happened to me. It was the shock I needed to make me re-examine my existence and it lead me to me meeting the man I have no doubt really will see me all the way to my grave.” After [The One] left, “I remember, like Katy, having an overwhelming desire to escape the wreckage of my life. I sold my flat, my car and changed jobs. Like Katy, I traveled, often alone, and I read books and signed up for art classes… I reconnected with neglected friends, made a few new ones, and one or two errors, too.  Most of all, I resolved never again to let my heart get the better of my brain – even if it meant spending the rest of my life alone. Better a solitary existence…than reliving all that agony.”

“It was during one of those trips that I met the real love of my life: my husband. I wasn’t looking for romance and nor was he. In fact, it was most unexpected: no one who knew us would ever have matched us… Yet from the moment we went on our first date to a restaurant- he was an hour late, but luckily I’m so greedy I waited, and besides, the waiter kept bringing me glasses of prosecco “from the gentleman who is on his way” [guys – learn from this (my comment)]- my heart and head were in agreement: this one was a keeper. ”

“Every girl should have a Katy Colins moment when they’re forced to ask themselves what they really want out of life.  Because, as she and I have discovered, you really can shape your reality – and if you get it right , it can be better than your wildest dreams. ”

The only significance anything has is what we decide to give it.

There’s another thing to think about. David Michie, in his book “Buddhism for Busy People”, reminds us that when things occur, they happen and they happen without any significance, or importance. It is we who assign them a significance, and we can choose any significance we want.  Michie wanted first to be a published author. His expectation creeped up – he wanted to be a best-selling author. When he achieved that, he wanted to be a continually best selling author. When that didn’t happen, he thought his dream had fallen apart. But he got some advice, that if he liked to write, he should continue.  He then wrote on things he was interested in without expectations, and went on to write popular books that help people.

A breakup can be thought of as a catastrophe or it can viewed as a great opportunity. A door has closed but, now we have the time to look and see that other doors are open.  To build a new house (or life) custom designed the way we want, we have to  work and prepare a new clearing for it.  Will you really miss his flat ass, or that you ended up doing all the work, or that he didn’t give the warmth, contact or communication that you like? Maybe you didn’t feel great being around that person? Maybe you “knew” (felt) it had become a mistake, but didn’t pay attention to it?

Shakespeare says it in a different way. Hamlet tells his friends that he feels Denmark is a prison, and his friends respond “we think not so, my lord”. Hamlet answers “Why then ’tis none for you; for there is nothing either good or bad, but thinking makes it so. To me it is prison. ”  How we think about things determines how we feel. You survived fine before you met this guy, so you obviously know how to survive after this guy. Now, raise your game and instead of just surviving, go for thriving  – “… live deep and suck out all the marrow of life” – Thoreau

Talk to a Trusted Friend

Friendship is really the finest balm for the pangs of disappointed love”  -Jane Austen, Northanger Abbey

Venting is important. Talk to a friend you trust. Get it out so you’re not holding it in any further.  It does hurt, so talk about your feelings. Having support and washing out the wound will help the healing begin.

“Gotta Get Up to Get Down” – Coolio

On the practical side, there is life, and hope, and many opportunities out there – many fish in the sea! All you have to do is SHOW UP (one of the Secrets of Life). Get out of the house – alone or grab a friend.  Go somewhere you enjoy – preferably that has  music – and MOVE – dance, walk, jog, exercise, ice skate, ski, swim,  bike ride, mountain climb, kayak, sail, stretch, do yoga, volunteer to help someone who’s badly off, learn something you always wanted to do – take art, poetry, music classes, get into a play. Just do something you enjoy. I love to get some good, lively music on my phone, plug in and go walking.  I love dancing – even better with a wonderful partner. I love martial arts – the exercise, the coordination, the challenge, the movement.  I love drawing – the seeing and the wordless translation onto paper. It re-charges both my body and spirit and just feels good. Do things that feel good to you.

Another of the things you can do is to be kind to yourself.  In many ways we’re still little kids inside, still learning about life. Forgive yourself for any mistakes made.

“If your compassion does not include yourself,
it is incomplete.” – Buddha

There was one of those internet “list articles” for guys – ’25 Things to Think About before dating and Athletic Girl’ . Girls workoutIt mentioned “Those early mornings, late post-work nights and rushed gym sessions keep her feeling strong… [she doesn’t do it for you]…She’s a woman on a feel-good mission.”
Start making it your goal to be on Your “Feel-Good Mission”.

(A suggestion for when you get around to beginning a new relationship: see Some ways to know if he is a keeper)

Now, Be That Which You Want!

Anger is a great motivator. Harness it. After you get stronger and back on your feet (literally), then, see what Wayne Dyer said about –

Be That Which You Want”

Logo by Aaron James Draplin
Logo by Aaron James Draplin

Some music for your soul and “Moving On”

Here’s some “Music for Moving On” that I hope will help:

And here’s a  lively Spanish song – “You’re Not For Me”

Lyrics for “You’re not for me”

You tell me that you love me
That you can’t live without me
That you’re overwhelmed in those moments
I’m not with you
That you had always waited for me
That I was the person you dreamt about
The one that your mother wanted to be your woman


That my eyes are stars
That my smile is the most beautiful
That all my attributes are perfect for him
If he were a photographer
If he were a artist
I’d be his Mona Lisa
and even a tango by Gardel
And that I don’t believe.

I want you to know
that you are not for me
That you’re not for me
I always knew
but didn’t pay attention…
Don’t even think about showing up around here
Show up around here
With your complications
and cheap stories

That you promised me the moon
That I’m like no one else
That I look like a damsel
that has to be protected
That you’ve left your vices
That his earth has elevated
That he promised the life that I deserve
And I don’t believe that.

I want you to know that I’m not for you
That I’m not for you,
I always knew it, but didn’t pay attention
That I don’t even think about starting with you again
Starting with you again
My heart can’t take more disaster

And I, who I told myself so much
that you weren’t good for me
That you were my destruction
And me always trying to leave you
Your day has arrived
Your day has arrived.


Here’s another upbeat song entitled: “I’m Stronger Without You”

Lyrics in English:

Braggart  –   (I’m stronger without you.)

Comparsions are odious
But I’ve got a thousand reasons
To know it was a mistake

I put in the balance what I have
And I encharge myself
to sing them to you, my love.

You swore wonders to me (No, no, no)
Even to cure my ills (Yes sir)
I have asked and confessed
even prayed the rosary to
The little virgin of love

But I
Convinced myself
That it is better to be alone
than be deceived by you

I will cry
I know it’s that way
But rest assured
I’m stronger without you
I’m stronger without you

I decided to clean even the closet
Giving away the unnecessary
Beginning with your love

I tried to my soul to love you
And it turns out my luck
Has turned out to have been the best

Do not dare to reclaim me (no, no, no)
Saying that you now know how to love me (Braggart)
So many promises to the saints
As you know there were so many
But not one answered  me

For that I
Convinced myself
It is better to be alone
Than be deceived by you

I will cry
I know it’s that way
But rest assured
I’m stronger without you

So I
Convinced myself
It is better to be alone
Than be deceived by you

I will cry
I know it’s that way
But rest assured
I’m stronger without you
I’m stronger without you

If you know of any other songs that help you get through a during a breakup, please let me know and I’ll add them.