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Groundhog Day

February 2, 2016

groundhog_daySo today is Groundhog Day.

Some of you might be thinking, what’s that? Some of you might be remembering the film – I know that’s what came to mind when I heard about it on the radio this morning, and this post will focus more on that element, but just for accuracy purposes I did look up Groundhog Day online & found the following explanation on Wikipedia:

“According to folklore, if it is cloudy when a groundhog emerges from its den in the tree on this day, then the spring season will come early; if it is sunny, the groundhog will supposedly see its shadow and retreat back into it’s den, and winter weather will persist for six more weeks.”

So there you go, groundhog day refers to animals & weather, bit like cows standing up or sitting down in the UK in summertime I guess.

But anyway, moving on to the real reason for this post ….

On the radio this morning I listened to this guy talking about how we so often sleepwalk through life. I guess many people are often trapped by the daily grind of routine, not really thinking about what they’re doing or why they’re doing it. People get so wrapped up in their own lives that they effectively live in a little bubble, safely ensconced in their own lives, away from many of the realities of the “outside” world. Sometimes that might protect us from the grim happenings & hardships out there. But do we really need to be protected from them? Should we not be acutely aware of what is going on & perhaps trying to make a difference? How else will things change? What’s that phrase, if it’s to be done, why not you?!

Perhaps we need to step off the autopilot pedal every now & then and move onto manual. Take stock of the world. Look at our own communities, our own circles & try to really see what’s going on. Perhaps we are the first step in making that difference, the difference that might really change things for the better.

The expressions are endless:
Take time to smell the coffee;
Walk the walk, don’t talk the talk;
Step out of your comfort zone
and so it goes on ….

On a personal level, each of us has far more than we even realise. Only when we face our darkest days do we sometimes understand that. The interviewee on the radio talked about how we shouldn’t be defined by that awful day or event, that we need to find the essence of our own happiness and to focus on enjoying the simple pleasures of life.

I know I’m guilty of not doing that. Sometimes it’s really hard to see what you have when there’s something you want so much that it tears you up inside or when something so unbearably painful has happened that you just can’t seem to get over it & move on. I’ve often said that thinking isn’t good for you! By that I mean, we can dwell on things too much, rather than looking at life gratefully, embracing what we have and enjoying now, the present.

In our 21st century world we’re surrounded by messages all day, every day. Messages telling us that we need specific things to be fulfilled, be those products, experiences, relationships. We’re, perhaps subconsciously, nudged towards materialism, told that we need these trappings to be happy, that we’re not complete without them. In reality the happiest people are those who appreciate what & who they have around them in their lives already, be that family, friends, a home, food on the table, flowers in the garden, raindrops in the park, and the list could go on.

We all have so much more than we realise, more than we even need. Perhaps we should all create a list of those blessings and endeavour to make each day amazing, to smile and to appreciate those little things daily.

I think I’m inspired to go home & watch Groundhog Day this evening. I’ve read it’s credited as being a very spiritual and even Buddhist film. Interesting. I think I’m going to watch it in a whole new light from now on, and at the end of the day, that’s the only way.

There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle. Einstein

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