By Fareeha Qayoom
don’t know why – but I kept remembering this story (like a line from a forgotten song) that I thought I had read in the book called “Chicken Soup for the Soul” by Jack Canfield and Mark Hansen ages ago. It goes something like this – there’s this guy relaxing and fishing quietly by this quiet beach – a guy comes up to him and gives him this grandiose scenario where he would have to work very hard and long, achieve much, become rich, blah, blah, blah – so this guy goes, well, what comes after that? Well, you could relax on some beach and fish – this guy is hardly impressed. “What do you think I am doing right now? I don’t have to go through all that hassle to get to this point. I am already on some beach fishing!” Anyway, I went looking for this story in my copy of Chicken Soup (the original one) on my computer – for some weird reason I didn’t find the one I was looking for but I found a few that I didn’t mind reading again….Here they are:
Excerpts from Chicken Soup for the Soul –
All I Ever Really Needed To Know I Learned In Kindergarten
Most of what I really need to know about how to live and what to do and how to be, I learned in kindergarten. Wisdom was not at the top of the graduate mountain, but there in the sandbox at nursery school.
These are the things I learned: Share everything. Play fair. Don’t hit people. Put things back where you found them. Clean up your own mess. Don’t take things that aren’t yours. Say you’re sorry when you hurt somebody. Wash your hands before you eat. Flush. Warm cookies and cold milk are good for you. Live a balanced life. Learn some and think some and draw and paint and sing and dance and play and work every day some.
Take a nap every afternoon. When you go out into the world, watch for traffic, hold hands and stick together. Be aware of wonder. Remember the little seed in the plastic cup. The roots go down and the plant goes up and nobody really knows how or why, but we are all like that.
Goldfish and hamsters and white mice and even the little seed in the plastic cup—they all die. So do we.
And then remember the book about Dick and Jane and the first word you learned, the biggest word of all: LOOK. Everything you need to know is in there somewhere. The Golden Rule and love and basic sanitation. Ecology and politics and sane living.
Think of what a better world it would be if we all—the whole world—had cookies and milk about 3 o’clock every afternoon and then lay down with our blankets for a nap. Or if we had a basic policy in our nations to always put things back where we found them and clean up our own messes. And it is still true, no matter how old you are, when you go out into the world, it is better to hold hands and stick together.
Children Learn What They Live
If children live with criticism, they learn to condemn.
If children live with hostility, they learn to fight.
If children live with fear, they learn to be apprehensive.
If children live with pity, they learn to feel sorry for themselves.
If children live with ridicule, they learn to be shy.
If children live with jealousy, they learn what envy is.
If children live with shame, they learn to feel guilty.
If children live with tolerance, they learn to be patient.
If children live with encouragement, they learn to be confident.
If children live with praise, they learn to appreciate.
If children live with approval, they learn to like themselves.
If children live with acceptance, they learn to find love in the world.
If children live with recognition, they learn to have a goal.
If children live with sharing, they learn to be generous.
If children live with honesty and fairness, they learn what truth and justice are.
If children live with security, they learn to have faith in themselves and in those around them.
If children live with friendliness, they learn that the world is a nice place in which to live.
If children live with serenity, they learn to have peace of mind.
With what are your children living?
Dorothy L Nolte
We who lived in the concentration camps can remember the men who walked through the huts comforting others, giving away their last piece of bread. They may have been few in number, but they offer sufficient proof that everything can be taken from a man but one thing: The last of his freedoms—to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.
Viktor E. Frankl Man’s Search for Meaning
And finally my real favorite – on the subtle art of procrastination!
For Me To Be More Creative, I Am Waiting For…
4. The coffee to be ready
5. My turn
6. Someone to smooth the way
7. The rest of the rules
8. Someone to change
9. Wider fairways
11. The stakes to be lower
12. More time
13. A significant relationship to:
14. The right person
15. A disaster
16. Time to almost run out
17. An obvious scapegoat
18. The kids to leave home
19. A Dow-Jones of 1500
20. The Lion to lie down with the Lamb
21. Mutual consent
22. A better time
23. A more favorable horoscope
24. My youth to return
25. The two-minute warning
26. The legal profession to reform
27. Richard Nixon to be re-elected
28. Age to grant me the right of eccentricity
30. Jacks or better
31. My annual checkup
32. A better circle of friends
33. The stakes to be higher
34. The semester to start
35. My way to be clear
36. The cat to stop clawing the sofa
37. An absence of risk
38. The barking dog next door to leave town
39. My uncle to come home from the service
40. Someone to discover me
41. More adequate safeguards
42. A lower capital gains rate
43. The statute of limitations to run out
44. My parents to die (Joke!)
45. A cure for herpes/AIDS
46. The things that I do not understand or approve of to go away
47. Wars to end
48. My love to rekindle
49. Someone to be watching
50. A clearly written set of instructions
51. Better birth control
52. The ERA to pass
53. An end to poverty, injustice, cruelty, deceit, incompetence, pestilence, crime and offensive suggestions
54. A competing patent to expire
55. Chicken Little to return
56. My subordinates to mature
57. My ego to improve
58. The pot to boil
59. My new credit card
60. The piano tuner
61. This meeting to be over
62. My receivables to clear
63. The unemployment checks to run out
65. My suit to come back from the cleaners
66. My self-esteem to be restored
67. A signal from Heaven
68. The alimony payments to stop
69. The gems of brilliance buried within my first bumbling efforts to be recognized, applauded and substantially rewarded so that I can work on the second draft in comfort
70. A reinterpretation of Robert’s Rules of Order
71. Various aches and pains to subside
72. Shorter lines at the bank
73. The wind to freshen
74. My children to be thoughtful, neat, obedient and self-supporting
75. Next season
76. Someone else to screw up
77. My current life to be declared a dress rehearsal with some script changes permitted before opening night
78. Logic to prevail
79. The next time around
80. You to stand out of my light
81. My ship to come in
82. A better deodorant
83. My dissertation to be finished
84. A sharp pencil
85. The check to clear
86. My wife, film or boomerang to come back
87. My doctor’s approval, my father’s permission, my minister’s blessing or my lawyer’s okay
89. California to fall into the ocean
90. A less turbulent time
91. The Iceman to Cometh
92. An opportunity to call collect
93. A better write-off
94. My smoking urges to subside
95. The rates to go down
96. The rates to go up
97. The rates to stabilize
98. My grandfather’s estate to be settled
99. Weekend rates
100. A cue card
101. You to go first
David B. Campbell
As for the story, not sure where I read it, maybe, it was “Heart at work,” by Jack Canfield and Jacqueline Miller or maybe it was the “Chicken soup for the soul at work” by Jack Canfield et al. Anyway, that’s a project for another weekend…in the meantime, I have bunch of stuff to do and all I really want to do is curl up somewhere and just nap…know what I mean?