Monday, 27 February 2012

Cyber-love sickness

My secret life

Most of us welcome a vivid imagination as it’s the well spring of creativity. Imagination, like anything else, can be good in the hands of the progressive who use it to create plays, books, musical scores, cinematography, paintings and other such endeavours. 

Columbus and Magellan would never have circumnavigated the world without a lot of it. Neither would Edison had had his light bulb moment without buckets of it and we wouldn’t be communicating as we do without a series of great minds collaborating to build the super information highway.

And that’s the problem…..with great achievements (and imagination)  comes greater responsibility. The obligation to ensure that what we produce through use of our imagination will enhance our lives and those around us. Naturally this is a double edged sword so it can be either friend or foe.

The sun always shines in Cyberland
I refer to  “Second Life”, a web game that allows you to create an entirely new character using an avatar and a life that bears little or no resemblance to your own.  Since we live in a world of possibilities then “Second Life” opens doors that are closed to you in real life.

If you fancy being a curvaceous red-head or a surgically enhanced blue eyed bombshell or a broad-shouldered hunk with glistening pecs then step right into your Second Life. This is a virtual world where you can be anything you want to and live in places that you’ve always dreamed of. 
It’s a glossy, sunkissed lifestyle with opulent homes by the beach, state of the art vehicles, luxurious entertainments and world-wide travel. You can make “friends” and even enter into full blown relationships with simulated sex (keeping your clothes on!). It’s all too unreal to be real!

“Second Life” makes real life seem dull and boring and so the people who indulge themselves in this virtual world find themselves disappointed – with their husbands, partners, children, jobs, homes and friends. Nothing can compare to a life that’s seemingly  perfect in every way. There’s no poverty, dilapidated buildings, rattling jalopies, broken fingernails or anything that would be a blot on the landscape.

One woman became so obsessed with her “second life” that she ignored the needs of her husband and children. She “fell in love” with another avatar, had “cyber-sex”  and felt so involved in the relationship that she had to meet him in real life.  She travelled 5000 miles to meet the man behind the avatar and guess what….it was awkward to say the least and they found that there was no chemistry between them even though they had been “together” in their virtual life.  She returned very disappointed to her family.

Not Mr Right 
Another couple got married in the virtual world and then met up in real life and found that they were genuinely in love. They got “married” on screen and found it an exhilarating experience. You can organise your nuptials complete with venue, flowers, bridesmaids, cars, gifts, honeymoon with none of the hassles in the real world. This is one place you don’t need a wedding planner or your mother! The biggest advantage being that everything is affordable for the price of membership.

Stories such as these can be brushed off as some light-hearted fun or it serves to show how compelling the world of web games are. When we live in this altered state of reality we sometimes  forget that we can achieve our ambitions in the real world with effort and focus. If, by some chance, our on-screen persona spills over to our regular one then that could be a match made in heaven.

Land of Make-believe
All of us seek more excitement and inspiration but perhaps cyberland is not the best place to go in search of it. This world of infinite possibilities can lead us to delusion and despair. We want the fantasy to be the reality but it can’t be. We’re reluctant to leave this dream-like world but we have to. We don’t want to grow up or age gracefully even though its inevitable. We want to be something we’re not and that’s unhealthy.

There’s  something about ourselves that we believe we can’t fix. So “ Second Life” becomes that fix – a quick one just before the kids or hubby get home. A cyber lover can betray you as easily as a real life one and a cyber relationship can be as complicated as any you’ve found in the real world.

Wisdom does not live in the world of cyberspace and perhaps that’s the thing we need a little more of….not a four wheel drive or a beach home! Meaningful relationships are not found out-of-this- world and they’re not found in artificial personalities.

I'm nobody's toy!
Cyber love is emotional adultery and  hurts those we live with; its a merry-go-round of utter selfishness and....beware....what goes around comes around. If you find yourself being cybercised don't feel bad!  When you ignore flesh and blood to play in your make-believe playground the tables may be turned on you. . Unrequited cyber love can hurt just as much as the real thing so don’t get hung up on it…it’s just a don't become the plaything!


Sunday, 26 February 2012

Find an idea.....and marry it!

Make love and pots

I’m not usually one for offering advice on relationships. My efforts in this sphere have not been particularly noteworthy and could be classified as bordering on disastrous. 
However every failure serves as a valuable lesson in the art of living and, from that standpoint, my experiences have been pure gold!

In order to understand why we choose partners as we do we have to go back to childhood. Who were our role models? Were they people to look up to or people who made us vow to ourselves that we would never do as them?

"You remind me of my ogre of an uncle"
Our parents are our first advisers. Their choices become ours and their subtle influences  are echoed in the way we vote, dye or not dye our hair and the way we stir our tea. 

Even in looks and personal characteristics we select partners who either resemble our parents physically or characteristically - dark hair, doe eyes, crooked smile, sultry lisp or ones who have the same geniality, pragmatism, indecisiveness and temper! 

Yes, we are attracted to negative traits as much as anything else. 
In fact, when it comes to the law of attraction, we’ll go for good looks and poor character rather than average looks and healthy character.

Is he your cup of tea?
So how can we escape this internal programming? The best way is to have a purpose or goal in mind. Now that’s easy to say but when you’re a teenager or twenty something your head is swimming with a million useless facts and figures – the vital statistics you may be concentrating on  have nothing to do with your life plan!

Once the craziness (and hormones) pass you’ll start wondering what the bigger picture is. Are you meant to be a desk bound executive or a freelance horticulturalist? Do you stay in this job for the next 10 years, get a mortgage etc.? What are you really looking for?

In our salad days, none of us really know. We go out to a bar one evening with friends and we’re introduced to the person we’ll have to spend a period of time in romantic bliss. We have no idea of our compatabillty until the relationship is under way. 

Mr Nasty
Sometimes we’re trying so hard to look as if we’re in control and  put forth the best impression that we miss the warning signs that Mr Maybe-Right is Mr Perhaps-Wrong. The flare of irritation when we don’t return their calls promptly; the hurtful comment about our dress sense, criticism of our family members and the glint in their eye when they observe another man’s admiration.

Find love doing what you love

No matter how many relationships you have been in or out of you must never lose sight of your personal strengths. Whatever it may be….writing, painting, tinkering with cars, needlecraft, baking, gardening, interior/ graphic design, event or holiday planning, keeping fit or jewelery making….stick with it. 

You need the right tools
Through thick and thin, your interests are a constant. 
They’ll never wake up and tell you that they don’t love you. They’ll never put you down. They’ll never make you feel that you’re worth nothing. They’ll never threaten you or ask you to choose between them. 

Your ideas and interests that become passion projects will be a source of comfort forever. And I mean happily forever after!

Students of life
Once you immerse yourself in your  projects…the unexpected might happen and you’ll meet “the one”. 

He won’t be perfect  and he may remind you of your Dad (in a good way) but at least you’ll have plenty to share since you’ll have common interests…..birds of a feather do flock together…so get your binoculars out and take up ornithology!


Wednesday, 22 February 2012

Cyber shark

New age phisherman

Give a man a rod and he’ll go fishing….give a man a computer and he’ll go phishing online. The former at least gets you communing with nature but the latter will greatly increase your mental pollution.

Cyberland is a daunting labyrinth of games, chat rooms, facebooking, emailing, web albums, podcasts, skypeing , twittering and wittering. It’s a jungle out there and without monitoring, discipline and intelligence you could find yourself in uncharted territory or up the creek minus a surf board.

Cyber-abuse is now the weapon of choice for predators who wish to terrorise their fellow man and woman. Sadly its women who bear the brunt of this new kind of intimidation.

Stalking is not a new phenomena. Before, a man would have to dress up in a dirty old raincoat and harrass random women that he came across in bars, shops, buses and other public areas. Since the advent of the internet, men don’t have to venture out into the cold air, they only have to log in.

Social media freak
Men have a pre-disposition to aggressive behaviour – part genetic, part learned – and their libido allows them to indulge in hooliganism, religious wars and domestic violence. It’s staggering to think that all men are born equal but not so equal to women!

Men just can’t help putting their brute strength and weak mind (aka devil’s workshop) to poor use. They surf and download unsavoury images. They sometimes coerce their girlfriends into allowing themselves to be filmed in a number of intimate poses. They Skype every night on the pretext of sharing their evening together but this turns into a subtle form of control. The man is insecure and doesn’t allow his girlfriend to spend any time fully alone.

This is social network stalking and Ruth Jeffrey was the victim of this vicious abuse at the hands of her boyfriend no less. He forwarded her photo to a number of adult sites and her face was superimposed on to models in risqué poses. He hacked into her email account and sent malicious messages to friends.

This is someone she had known since the age of 12. She had so much trust and confidence that she never suspected she was sleeping with the enemy. He was comforting and reassuring during moments of distress.

If you lie with dogs you'll only get fleas
This sexual manipulation went on until her parents had to be told. Her father managed to successfully trace the originator which lead him to a company registered in California in the name of the said boyfriend.

Following a successful prosecution the sentencing was a paltry four months. It appears that harassment and emotional abuse are still not crimes that are recognised by the justice system.

Anyone who’s been on the receiving end of abuse knows how debilitating it is and the scars may fade over time but victims never truly heal. Your confidence and trust has been stolen, your faith near destroyed and your self-esteem shattered.

Watch the birdie!
Virtual criminality does not come with a punishment that deters re-offending. That's still a work in progress in law making.

To safeguard yourself, the best way is to not indulge in too much social media or if you need to then do it under a pseudonym. 
Don’t upload photos on Facebook and waste time with inane chatting. Better still, why not get some fresh air, detoxify your mental space and become a social media minimalist?!


Monday, 20 February 2012

If your life was a would it go?

Heroic - the story of your life

If your life was a book would it be a page turner? A monologue of uninteresting facts? A suspenseful mystery? A tension filled thriller? A romantic comedy? A bitter sweet love story of unrequited love? A discourse on philosophy? A dark, Gothic story?  A tragedy?  A motivational manual? A better business guide? A travelogue?  A cautionary tale? A supernatural fantasy?  A racy Mills & Boon with a happy ending? A bodice ripper with  a touch of erotica? An educational supplement? A spiritual insight driven by passion and piety? A lurid tale of gossip and scandal? A love poem? A cook book? A mind boggling quiz?

If your life has been anything like mine then it has nuances of all the above. Life is an eclectic package and we live it all through a mix of free will and destiny.

Drama queen
The prologue is where we get introduced and meet our families. When we appear on this planet there’s no telling what kind of circumstances we’re born into. There are few easy rides even to those we think are to the manor born. Malcontent is rife amongst the rich and famous. A  designer home or state of the art car or luxury holidays can never fill the empty spaces inside. Even if we’re born into a less than ideal situation its amazing what we can do to improve our lot and even make a success of it.

The rags to riches story is an interesting one and worthy of a trilogy. It makes us feel that we can all do it but that’s not true. Sinking or swimming that’s what we do and in between we float or cruise. There’s struggle, pain and betrayal in our life stories – some that we’ll never get over, others that we can dismiss with grim melancholy and even ones that we look back and laugh over.

Gripping stuff
Few of us come into this world with a game plan. Those who find their passion at a young age and follow it usually find  success knocking at their door.  A number of selfless souls sacrifice themselves for a greater good….and that’s commendable…..though some sacrifice needlessly.

Here’s a potential plot: A dutiful wife gives up her career to become a home-maker. She keeps a beautiful home, fills it with three gorgeous children and looks forward to fun with her high-flying husband. Disaster ensues as she finds that his idea of fun is conducting meetings, travelling on business in a private jet, poring over spreadsheets and talking targets and objectives. She resigns herself to a number of options - accepting that she has to stand in line for her husband’s affections, buys herself a few trinkets as a consolation prize, has a dalliance with the gardener or asserts herself and opts for dissolution of the marriage.

This is certainly a story with a number of endings and if you believe that you’re the author of your life then take the plunge . If you believe that you’re a victim of circumstance then you’ll be powerless and that’s the ending you’ll write for yourself.

Every chapter has to move the story along and there’s got to be a dramatic hook. The day you say “yes” to a wolf in sheep’s clothing can be the start of your undoing. The bad news that you’ve failed – or passed -  an important exam can be a turning point.  A loss – of a person, property or face can be the trigger for following your dream. The loss of your limbs can be a life-changing event that provides the impetus to an amazing life.

As the story progresses there’s a black moment – a crisis point where a decision has to be made. There’s a protagonist and antangonist and you’ll relate to both.

Do it standing up!
 Villians must feature in your story and they’ll be flamboyant and evil creatures hell bent on destroying you.

Animals also play their part…from the good - cute hamsters and bunnies; the bad - mischevious pups and savage pitpulls  and  the ugly…spiders, snakes and other scaly, reptiles. Your story would not be complete without a little animal intervention.

Watch your word count as you might get entangled in long winded and meaningless dialogues with a host of minor characters; from the boy next door to the village gossip.

Objects will help plot development; car, umbrella, flowers, a pair of red heels, a slinky dress can speak volumes about your life choices. Other characters also cannot fail to be impressed (or not) by your taste!

Think about setting and perhaps your story has a nomadic thread running through it. You were born in one place, grew up in another and you’re planning for pastures anew.

Love and hate are the eternal themes that generate adventure, and sometimes even death.

The read of your life!
Does it have a happy ending or a twist? Well that’s up to you; you are the creator of this drama so it’s your call. Let your voice be heard.  Every story has a hero, a champion, an underdog who triumphs…….and you don’t have to look far for inspiration – just in the mirror!


Thursday, 16 February 2012

It's not about the's about the love

Anyone who’s watched the Secret Millionaire series knows what a heartwarming piece of television it is. Its one of the best money shows I know and provides an insight into why we all need a little more prosperity…and generosity.

This is when a millionaire or multi-millionaire goes undercover and stays a week in a poor neighbourhood. After he gets to know the local community he has to choose individuals or charities that he wishes to help. He parts with a minimum of $100k for deserving causes.

Love trader
This programme reveals the challenges faced by ordinary people who live below the breadline, some with disability, health problems and personal issues that have rendered them homeless, jobless and powerless. Under normal circumstances, a millionaire and a pauper would never cross paths until now.

It’s quite a wrench for a millionaire to leave his sprawling mansion and live amongst people from a lower social stratum. He has to exist on a meagre allowance and give up all his home comforts. The millionaires start off with judgmental attitudes but its not long before these are broken down.

Impoverished neighbourhoods look out for each other no matter how much bad press they receive. Many good people engage in helping one another no matter how difficult their own situation. They are like diamonds in the dirt, shining their light so that another may have light for his own path. This does not happen in affluent areas. More often than not, a millionaire has little or no contact with his neighbours – they’re all too busy chasing the next buck.

Feel the love
The genuine spirits of downtrodden and disadvantaged people shine through the despair to achieve marvelous things. This is altruism at work in those who are pure of heart. Amongst the needy are people who are inspirational and dedicated to making life a little better for their fellow men. These Good Samaritans are working tirelessly and asking for little or no reward.

Even the most hardened cynic will crumble in the face of the selflessness and sacrifice some individuals show. And so the millionaires see the other side of life which reminds them of their own backgrounds since they came up the hard way too.

To be wealthy is like being wrapped in soft and silky layers. The stark realities are no more than passing images on a screen. Its someone else’s life, not mine! This piece of reality television peels away those layers and, stripped off their houses, cars, businesses, and family, the real person emerges. 

I’m pleased to say that nearly all of the millionaires featured are good, decent people – with and without their money. They deserve their success as much as the recipients deserve the money.

It’s the exchange of love that is the most powerful thing and, more often than not, my tears mingle with theirs. Our faith in humanity is restored and our belief in compassion and kindness further strengthened. Though we feel as if we live in ivory towers we really don’t. We’re not untouchable. Thoughtfulness and kindness can move us as much as it can move mountains.

This is life changing TV since both parties experience transformation. The money is changed into love for the needy and the millionaire is enriched by his simple act of giving. The millionaire receives far more than he gives. His heart is softened and rippling with generosity. It feels good to give and he knows that to give is to truly live. It’s a win-win situation and that’s what the good life is all about.

Money is not evil. We need more of it in the world - not less - but it must be placed in the hands and hearts of those who strive for justice and equality.  The world is not so unbalanced as we think and God does not make any mistakes. The haves and the have-nots each come to fulfil the other.

Nevertheless, man and money do not make good bed fellows unless the superior being  is in control and money should never be master. When you feel love surging through your heart, tears of joy spilling from your eyes and your spirit soaring like a supersonic jet you’ll know……it’s not about the money.


Monday, 13 February 2012

JFK - a man with a fan

Family man

The latest revelations about the sexual exploits of President John F Kennedy are of no surprise. He was the ultimate playboy, whose ambition pushed him to high office and whose  libido was a threat to any attractive woman within his reach.

There’s nothing new about men in powerful positions seeking the company of women for consensual relations. Many women are co-conspirators in clandestine love affairs and their encounters are addictive and intoxicating experiences. Regardless of the circumstances, the laws of attraction are often too potent to fight. We are social animals led and held hostage by hormonal cravings. That’s the biology but my concern is with morality.

JFK was a man with a weakness. Mimi Alford just happened to be in the right place…..but at the wrong time for an impressionable girl who was still a virgin.
Teenage dream

Fifty years ago, Mimi Alford, was a nineteen year old intern, at the White House under JFK’s administration. She has published an engaging memoir of what happened to her during that time and her introduction to the most powerful man, the President.
JFK was forty five years old, married to Jackie and with two children.

You might think that the President had grave affairs of state, at home and abroad, to contend with and he did….but it still left time for him to pursue this young woman (and no doubt countless others). Ms Alford says that she was mesmerized that a man of this stature would want her and accepted the “relationship” without question.
After all, powerful men expect young women to fall at their feet and fawn over them!

Ms Alford tells a lurid tale of being invited to swim with the President, seduction techniques and meetings engineered by his aides.

It makes for uncomfortable reading and not merely for the pornographic aspects but due to the fact that a forty five year old man targeted a teenager for his carnal pleasure .  Not any man…. but the President of the United States…. who was a Catholic, married and respected as a great orator and statesman the world over.

The Kennedys are a family veiled in mystery and scandal. There was speculation that the male members of the Kennedy clan had a sexual addiction and had inherited these traits from their father. True though that may be, it’s no excuse for a man with intellect and privilege to abuse his position.

Cure for addiction?
It would seem that JFK was an eloquent idol with feet of clay and Achilles heel. He did support the Civil Rights movement though it made him unpopular.
He was praised for his handling of the Cuban Missile Crisis but beyond that his two years in office were unremarkable….until Ms Alford’s memoirs.
He had style, personality and idealism and he put it to good use.

Ms Alford further states that, during their “dangereuse liaisons” she always called him, “ Mr President” and never by his first name. I’m sure he enjoyed his ego trip until it was cut short by a trip to Dallas.

“I’ll see you when I get back from Dallas,” the optimistic JFK told her.
It was the last time she would see him alive. Fate or a higher power intervened and the 22nd of November 1963 is indelibly etched in the minds of people who lived at that time. I may have jumped in my mother’s womb when the shots rang out. 

I can’t help feeling that it was a happy release for the hundreds of women that were held captive by his charm and  presidential power.


Sunday, 12 February 2012

Nobody's Angel

Today, the world wakes up to the sad news of the death of Whitney Houston. She was a singer, performer and global icon. Her gift was her voice which had a magnificence and power that surpassed anything that could be called mere talent. This she was born with and it came out of her like a spring – natural and even holy. 

When we watch “American Idol” and “The X Factor” we see  auditionees who have  raw talent that require development through mentoring. These potential candidates for stardom have to wait in line and count votes to reach the peak. They have to slog through, face disappointment, criticism and rejection. It’s by far the toughest route to fame.

Whitney needed no such help during her life. She was blessed and, in recent weeks, she herself acknowledged that during an interview. She was born to a gospel singer, her god mother was Aretha Franklin and cousin, Dionne Warwick. Her ”audition” for world fame was sealed in church as she performed along side her mother. The world knows greatness when it hears it and Whitney had it all… her voice, her looks and aura.

Those we consider to “have it all” often don’t. Their hearts and minds our very like ours – fragile and easily misled,  feeling the force and breaking down, thinking we know it all then finding we’re clueless in the face of challenge. 
Inner strength does not reveal itself until the hard times come and either we harness it and swim through    our troubles or we sink - one shot at a time.

The Climb of your life
In Whitney’s case she was sinking but no one really knew how to help. Previously married to fellow singer, Bobby Brown, she did not find happiness in that relationship. Relationship baffles us all…..why can’t we find the love of our life….why can’t it be like……why didn’t I…..what am I missing here?

Whitney, no doubt suffered, trying to find that elusive thing that would give her lasting inner peace and happiness.  Her quest drove her to seek refuge in drugs and alcohol.

The painful truth is that there’s no one or no thing that can fix you, though you might try many fixes in your lifetime – food, prescription drugs, money, mansions, men, marriage, parenthood and a private jet!
Life is a journey towards wholeness and a good many of the above are a hindrance and help along the way.

Whitney’s experience of life was a lot greater and grander than most ordinary folk but it was no less arduous. Her personal struggle to find equilibrium has been the loneliest road of all and one that she’ll now pursue on a higher plane.

Candle in the wind
Although wealth provides great opportunities it also poses a dilemma. When the mundane aspects of our life are taken care of then we have to confront the demons within. When we conquer one then out comes another and another. Whitney fought hard against them but, in the end, her spirit weakened and she succumbed.

She’ll be remembered for posterity for casting a light through music. The light of Whitney will never dim and I had the privilege of seeing a live performance in 1988 in London. She was at the height and the edge of her glory. She’s quoted as saying that she was “no angel”, and no one of us are, but she’ll always be everyone’s sweetheart.

Fly free Whitney!


Tuesday, 7 February 2012

Love is a temporary form of insanity

Love is….an inexplicable and complex emotion. It creates drama in our lives and perhaps that is its true function. Without it, we are bereft and plunged into a black hole of despair. With it, we are either floating on a cloud, going weak at the knees, having butterflies in our stomach, looking at the world anew, dreaming of our beloved and just feeling good to be alive.

Love makes you feel soft and warm inside and sparks fly when eyes meet and when lips touch its blinding…ooh! There’s a light in your eyes and the world seems different….even when a car whizzes past  and covers you in mud… just don’t care. That’s what love does to you. You forget the details and concentrate on the bigger picture. The big picture is that you’ve found “the one” and the detail is that he’s a jerk!

Romance, to the uninitiated, is a something you have to come down from to realise that you were being fooled big time. Oh yes, love is a game that rarely has two winners….that’s if you choose to see it as competitive. Let’s face it….guys mostly buy into this romance thing so that they have an arena to flex their ego and exercise their libido. What cynicism I hear you all cry?

love god or love rat?
My guy loves me and will walk to the end of room to switch on the computer and show me by sending me an email (even though we’re in the same room).  
My guy will lie on the sofa and happily tap his toe in time to me chinking the dishes as I wash up. 
My guy leaves his clothes on the chair – the shirt and trousers I bought for his birthday – so that he can fully appreciate his wonderful present. My guy will never put anything away in case I need to use it – that’s thoughtfulness! 
My guy checks my mobile phone to make sure I’m not getting nuisance calls or unwanted male attention. 
My guy holds the remote control very tightly and vets the TV I watch in case I see something unsavoury. 
My guy doesn’t like me spending time with my friends – that’s taking away from “us” time – that how much he wants me. 
My guy follows me everywhere so I have 24 hour personal security. 
My guy doesn’t get on with my sister so I’m no longer close to her – he wants me all to himself because….he loves me!

Someone's playing with my mind!
C’mon, admit it – one or all of us have had some experience of some or all of the above. Someone, at some time in our life, has made us accept what, under normal circumstances, would be considered emotional abuse. We’ve followed the dictates of “our beloved” and  doubted and sacrificed ourselves. We’re so in love with love that we forget that love begins with ourselves. The clues are there but we don’t want to see them. This is one boat that we don’t want to rock.

Pain after the pleasure
The truth is staring us in the face but we choose the lie. The lie allows us to save face and even preserve some distorted self-esteem. We like being a couple, a twosome, me-for-you-and-you-for me-some! We delude ourselves with a million little things that other people can see. Close friends will share some of their misgivings about our significant other but all we do is become defensive. The illusion is preferable to the pain of reality. Our cowardice is ultimately our downfall and when that fall comes….we know the searing pain of love lost.

To understand what love is we have to learn what love is not. This kind of education happens through painful experience and hindsight. There’s no easy route to find out what love is not. Only when you’ve been emotionally wrung dry and sat in the tunnel searching for the light at the end of it will you know. Next time you’ll be careful or wiser or lucky or cynical! The foolhardy and eternal optimists will do it again and again. Others will dwell on past mistakes, some become serial daters and some eventually find the real thing.

True love doesn’t hurt and doesn’t erode your self esteem. In fact, the force of love should lift you up and support you in bad times. Love is something that you are never without and that’s the madness of it all. We look for something that is already within. We’re like a man who travels the whole world looking for the object of his desire only to find it waiting for him at home. If that’s not verging on insanity then I don’t know what is!

Thankfully, it’s not will see through the romantic haze and stop deluding yourself. One day when you’re minding your own business you’ll stumble across love in the most unexpected way....and might be the kind that allows you to hang on to your brain cells or maybe not....but that's what love is!


Monday, 6 February 2012

What's in your head space?

Organising your own head space is a challenge and it takes discipline and subtle control.
Many people are just not good at it though I live in hope as we move through the 21st century this will be a governmental priority. Given the rise in the number of counsellors, therapists and psycho-analysts that are in practice more and more people are signing up. It has to be good thing since talk therapy offers effective pain relief especially if conducted by a professional and in a safe environment.

People with charismatic personalities know how to work their head space. They put barriers up to shut out the crowd. They live in their own world and believe that they have something unique to offer. This can enhance their educational and psychological traits or it can put them on the road to spectacular ruin. Charisma works both ways and can be a force for good or evil.

Man and moustache!
One figure in history who had bucket loads of it, is a man who’s remembered for heinous crimes. He started out life as a social misfit; a misanthrope who harboured a dark side. He was artistic and somewhat gifted in this field but, by a strange act of fate, he could not pursue his ambitions. He was deeply sensitive but this made him wary and watchful.  He enjoyed the company of animals and was caring towards them. His reclusiveness offered  no consolation other than to make him mistrustful of his fellow men, especially those he deemed to be “different”.

 He spent his young life building up a heap of negative images about a race of people that were causing harm to his country. He played the blame game and saw the economic hardships his country faced as the fault of these people. He thought that life came in a neat, little package. He was the Messiah, the Chosen One and he managed to convince a significant number of such. 

His brand of patriotism was to dupe his people into believing that they could be the most powerful nation if they annihilated a few million other people. This person also encouraged the extermination  if they did not follow his principles. And, strangely enough, no one stood in his least in the beginning.

He was a despot extraordinaire. A whole country subscribed to his manifesto and a reign of terror was unleashed. He devised a system of torture and cruelty against every man, woman and child of this particular race. Herded up and transported like cattle they were taken to death camps where the “lucky few” were given hard labour whilst the others were put to death.

What was going on in this man’s head? Historians can hardly fathom it. Worse still, what enabled him to convince others and enlist their help in his murderous scheme for world domination? What kind of people believe that this is the path to success? Weak and dangerous minds follow their “Fuerhrer” like sheep. They follow ridiculous orders in order to keep face.

It’s a well known psychological tool….put a man in a uniform, provide him with the semblance of authority, a fancy title to match and….hey presto…you’ve produced a dictator! Tyrants have rampant egos that constantly seek adulation. Their ideas are crazy but when a bunch of weak minds gather together anything can happen….and it did.

People think that it couldn’t happen to them but, put them under pressure, and you’ll see that the reality is not so pretty.

He's got it!
The moral of this story is to keep your head space in optimum condition by protecting it from other dangerous minds. Check that your thoughts are yours and not borrowings from the media. Question authority….from wherever it comes….you parents, teachers, boss, friends, aunt and the man/woman next door. Remember that opinions are coloured by people’s life experiences and whether they choose to see if the glass is half full or empty. Filter information that’s received and have lock down sessions.

People love to play with your mind. They’ll say anything to create needless stress and worry. They’ll try and have you believe in their mantra/religion/ethos/mission statement.

De-clutter your mind and take a break from the chatter. Refresh your thinking by reading inspirational works. Polish your mind until it shines like steel and with the strength to match. Never accept what others say unless it resonates within. Be true to your values – when there's order in your head and space to think - then there’ll be order in your world.