Tag Archives: making choices

Train Yourself to Seek Opportunity


Sometimes an opportunity doesn’t seem like much…until you make something of it. ~Sunshine E. Monk

It is so easy to fall into a rut and claim that there are no opportunities.  When in fact, there are times in life when we need to think outside of the box and seek our own opportunities.  (After all, in life, nobody is holding us back but ourselves, right?)  You might think it is hard, but in reality, it just takes a little time and attention.In one of the sessions I attended during a Women’s Wellness Retreat a few years ago, the instructor likened finding pennies on the ground to seeking your own opportunities.  Her story (filtered through my memory) went something like this:

Most of the time when we are walking through public places, and even at home, we unconsciously step over and ignore pennies.  We do it without notice.  Most of the time, if a penny on the ground is actually noticed, we think to ourselves, “oh, its only a penny, not worth the time or effort to pick it up.”  But in reality, if you start to teach yourself to seek out spare change on the ground, you would be surprised how much more you notice.  And after a period of time, say a year, you will notice how many coins or pieces of money you have found on the ground, simply by being open to seeking it out.

Similarly, we pass over so many opportunities each day.  It might be an opportunity as simple as a conversation with someone to encourage them, or as complex as creating a way for your dreams to come true or creating career opportunities.

I have noticed, however, that we keep our eyes closed to the opportunities and keep focused on the task at hand.  Sometimes we might even brush off our instinct for an idea or opportunity because it sounds “over the top” or crazy.  Some of the most profound inventions came from ideas that were over the top.  Apple has reinvented itself with ideas that were over the top.  In our own lives, we need to be aware of our own ideas and opportunities, even if they sound like they are over the top.  Your dreams might not be as unaccessible as you think.

Be open to other people and be open to opportunities that may present themselves, no matter how big or small they might seem.  Live in the opportunities and learn from them.  When we seek them out, we will notice them more.

If you don’t believe me, try it yourself.  Start trying to pay attention to the ground for loose pennies or change.  The first month, you might not even find a cent.  But you will see, the more you try to be aware of the opportunities to seek lost change, the more times you will actually find and notice pennies…and opportunities.

How much can you find over a year?  I will await your responses next year!  🙂  I will report my own seized opportunities through the next year.  Challenge?

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A Lesson in Judgment and Compassion


My best friend in high school said I was a snob to her for two years before we became friends.  I honestly didn’t even remember meeting her until we became friends.  I thought for sure that she was mistaken.  I was sure I was not a snob.

In my lifetime, I have met people and had friends who have had to make choices that I would never have made, some of which could be considered illegal, immoral, or both.  I never understood why people “liked” to or “chose” to live like that.  In the back of my head, I have just chalked that kind of behavior up to “personality.”

I know…pretty judgmental, huh?  Especially coming from someone (me) who cares TOO MUCH about what everyone thinks of her.

Well, let me tell you what!  The past few years have knocked me to the ground, made me beg, and then continued to kick while I was trying to get up.  It almost feels like I have been proverbially balled up in the fetal position for two years, trying to protect myself and my kids and grandkids.  Now, realize this, I do have a great job and a good salary, and I thank my Good Lord Jesus for that!  BUT, there were times when it was not so easy to be the sole provider for a family of 5, on top of other stresses and health issues.

I had to learn how to rely on someone else, or even groups of someone else.  I know what it is like to have strangers give you toys for your children (grandchildren) at Christmas, and was thankful for their kindnesses, prayers, and I now know what a food pantry looks like, and was grateful for it’s existence.  I have made decisions that I never thought I would have to make, but I had no other choice, because some situations called for a decision for the lesser of two evils.  If I met me a few months ago, well, let’s not go there!

Learning, growing, and becoming a better person. Follow the transformation at sunnimonk.com or get inspired on facebook

I have been humbled in so many different ways, but only recently realized that I WAS a snob (kind of).  Not because I thought I was better than someone else (I hope), but because I categorized people under circumstances, not as people.  If someone was in a certain situation, financially or otherwise, it must be a result of their own decisions, and sometimes it really is.  HOWEVER, that does not make the situation less difficult, nor does it make a person “bad” and it certainly DOES NOT disqualify them from needing help or assistance; love or hope.

Separating a person from their life’s situation(s) is one of the most enlightening things I have learned in my recent contemplations.  Admittedly, I have come to this realization by watching a show called, “Breaking Bad” (which totally rocks!)  Sociologically speaking, I am so fascinated by what this man has done…how far desperation has driven him. 

Very interesting…I have been in desperate situations as well, and have made choices that were not always the best.  Guess what?  That means I am human, not a “bad” person. 

All of this time, I am ashamed of having to even admit that I have had difficulties, and stresses as deep as I have…I FEARED being judged by friends and family.  That sort of reaction is familiar to me because… 

I have looked my nose down on people, including some of my dearest friends.  I have feared the same sort of response from friends and family…and I have gotten it in some cases.  I realized I don’t want to be the type of person who is so judgemental of a PERSON based on a situation.  Instead…Think first about the person, what they might be experiencing.  Think about how you can help or encourage them.  Extend a helping hand, without the shackles of judgement.  Help ANYWAYS! 

This, my friends, is what we call COMPASSION.  And I want to start living a more compassionate life.