Be unique. Be memorable. Be confident. Be proud.

Gifted people are sometimes called Zebras (a term proposed by French psychologist Jeanne Siaud Fachin). This is in part because zebras are non-domesticable by humans — they are too free-spirited and unpredictable to be tamed and controlled. It sounds like many gifted people we know!

Zebras also stand out from other species because of their loud black and white stripes, much as gifted people stand from the crowd out whether they want to or not. The interesting thing about zebras’ stripes is that they each have a unique stripe pattern – as fingerprints are unique to each human. This brings to mind the popular saying, “If you’ve met one gifted person, you’ve met *one* gifted person” — we are not a homogenous group!

Stripes serve zebras to protect themselves, by blending in with each other when predators are around, as predators cannot make out individuals when all they see is a group of stripes. Siaud Fachin said that gifted people tend to blend into the “herd” when they feel threatened too, which in one way is healthy; however, this can go wrong when a gifted person feels *constantly* threatened and is unable to feel safe enough to find their unique pattern, voice, and expression. Unfortunately, that’s not an uncommon experience for many gifted people.

Zebras are highly sensitive and perceptive animals, with excellent eyesight and night vision, excellent hearing with ears that turn in almost every direction, and acute senses of smell and taste. They have very high stamina, are fast, powerful, and resourceful. Every gifted person knows what it’s like to have an exceptional perception, speed, stamina, and resourcefulness in one area or another (or in many all at once).

Today we’re featuring zebras, as it is Endangered Species Day. This is an important time for us to remember that our lives, and even our metaphors and self-concepts, are intertwined with other species. We can understand ourselves better in a context of rich biodiversity around us, and it is up to us to protect that biodiversity (and rich intellectual diversity across species). And just as human “zebras” deserve a dignified life, so do our animal counterparts – many of whom are threatened with extinction due to our high consumption lifestyles and political and economic choices and ideologies. Among zebras, the Cape Mountain Zebra and the Grévy Zebra are both at risk of extinction. It’s estimated that 50% of the earth’s species are currently at risk of extinction due to human action.

It’s equally important that we extend this dignity and responsibility to our fellow human populations which are endangered — namely many indigenous groups. Indigenous people and their cultures bring rich sources of knowledge and connectedness and contribute so much to the beautiful intellectual diversity of our interconnected whole.

Let’s do all we can to protect the animals, our fellow humans, and all other endangered beings on this planet.

(Source: InterGifted via Facebook)

Today’s Mantra

Give yourself a break. You’re not perfect. No one is. You don’t have to be at the top of your game every day. No one is happy all the time. No one loves themselves always. No one lives without pain. Be willing to embrace your imperfections and excuse your bad days. Don’t set such high standards for yourself emotionally and mentally. It’s normal to feel sadness and pain and to hit some low points in life. Allow yourself to embrace these emotions without judging yourself for them.  ~Vishnu

Saying Goodbye

Why the things that hurt the most are the ones that are also liberating

It is painful but at the same time lighter

As if there is this massive weight that has been taken off your shoulder

Suddenly you feel light, happier, inspired, more positive and at the same time

Hurting like hell.

You feel like laughing and crying at the same time

Because though it pierces your heart you also realized that

You know where you stand and at last, you are finally free!

Time Traveler

Just because I’ve made it all up doesn’t mean it isn’t true.

Remember this, this, this and this? Among so many others that belonged to this category? Check it out and we will discuss it when you come back.

Done?

Okay.

My son once told me that I imagined the whole thing. When I asked him why it seems so real he said because to me it is. Granted. Maybe I hallucinated the ones that involved solely me. But what about those times when there were other people present, they have imagined the whole episode with me as well? How you call that? Collective insanity? Folie à deux? Herd mentality? Mass delusion? Tell me.

Do you believe in magic?  I don’t.

Not even after those experiences which have no logical explanations. But I strongly believe in a parallel universe(s) and other dimensions and I also believe that there are people who are able to navigate in both. I don’t know if I will consider that ability a gift or a curse. Personally, I don’t mind the idea as long as the traveling stays more or less cozy and doable but not when things turn into some kind of nightmares and you end up running for your life.

What about you?

What do you believe in?

Empathy, Sympathy, Affinity, And What Have You.

A long time ago

Someone accused me of

Not knowing what empathy is

I never put myself in the shoes of someone else he said

I said I don’t understand

He told me it is because my mind is closed.


If he means that I am not empathic because I can’t understand why he wanted to ruin our relationship by demanding to incorporate “benefits” into the friendship, then I am not empathic indeed.

If not joining the group when they shed unnecessary tears because someone committed a stupidity of doing the same mistakes over and over again but expecting a different result, then I am not empathic. Besides, crying in unison (because it is expected or to show you understand or in order to belong) is not a form of sympathy, it’s collective madness.

If someone truly cares, they will help you to improve the situation and yourself. They will make you understand the mistakes you are doing and help you find the solution to the problem, not crying with you and do nothing.

I cry in most people would think inappropriate situations. Like watching (not romantic) films Like Glory, Transformers, Big Hero 6 not because I sympathize but because it moved me. Likewise with babies, puppies, and paintings. I cry upon seeing senseless violence and act of kindness. I cry when I experience unexpected generosity, friendliness, and consideration from total strangers. I cry if I witness heroism and sacrifice for the greater good. But I don’t cry when someone breaks up with someone or the Notre Dame is burning. My heart reaches out to people who are victims of tragedies but I seldom cry. But issues like James Bulger, Marc Dutroux and such, I didn’t only cry, I still have nightmares.

I know there are three types of empathy that psychologists have defined: Cognitive, Emotional, and Compassionate.

Read this:


Cognitive Empathy

By definition: Simply knowing how the other person feels and what they might be thinking. Sometimes called perspective-taking.

What it’s concerned with: Thought, understanding, intellect.

Benefits: Helps in negotiations, motivating other people, understanding diverse viewpoints.

Pitfalls: Can be disconnected from or ignore deep emotions; doesn’t put you in another’s shoes in a felt sense.

It is about thought as much as emotion.
It is defined by knowing, understanding, or comprehending on an intellectual level. As most of us know, to understand sadness is not the same thing as feeling sad. Those who react with Cognitive Empathy risk seeming cold or detached. To truly understand another person’s feelings, don’t you in some sense have to be able to feel them yourself?

Emotional Empathy

By definition: “when you feel physically along with the other person, as though their emotions were contagious.” – Daniel Goldman

What it’s concerned with: feelings, physical sensation, mirror neurons in the brain.

Benefits: Helps in close interpersonal relationships and careers like coaching, marketing, management, and HR.

Pitfalls: Can be overwhelming, or inappropriate in certain circumstances.

Emotional Empathy, just like it sounds, involves directly feeling the emotions that another person is feeling. You’ve probably heard of the term “empath,” meaning a person with the ability to fully take on the emotional and mental state of another. The quote that comes to mind is: “I have a lot of feelings.”

This type of response might seem disconnected from the brain and thinking, but emotional empathy is actually deeply rooted in a human’s mirror neurons. All animals have neurons that fire in a certain way when they see another animal acting, making them relate to that action in their own body and brain. Emotional empathy does exactly that with the feelings someone experiences in reaction to a situation.

When your partner—or anyone you deeply love—comes to you in tears, it’s a natural response to feel that pull on your heartstrings. Like crying at a wedding or cringing when someone stubs their toe, it’s a deep-seated, gut reaction that often feels like a visceral human response. Connecting with another human in this way is intimate and can form a strong bond.

Like Cognitive Empathy, Emotional Empathy has its flip-side. One downside of emotional empathy occurs when people lack the ability to manage their own distressing emotions and can be seen in the psychological exhaustion that leads to burnout. Feeling too much can make even small interactions overwhelming.

Compassionate Empathy

By definition: With this kind of empathy we not only understand a person’s predicament and feel with them but are spontaneously moved to help if needed.

What it’s concerned with: Intellect, emotion, and action.

Benefits: Considers the whole person.

Pitfalls: Few—this is the type of empathy that we’re usually striving for!

The majority of the time, Compassionate Empathy is the ideal. Cognitive Empathy may be fitting for political or monetary negotiations or surgeon’s offices; Emotional Empathy may be the first response in children and for our loved ones; Compassionate Empathy strikes a powerful balance of the two.

Feelings of the heart and thoughts of the brain are not opposites. In fact, they’re intricately connected. Compassionate Empathy honors that natural connection by considering both the felt senses and intellectual situation of another person.

When your loved one comes to you in tears, you want to understand why she is upset and you also want to provide comfort by sharing in her emotional experience and hopefully helping her heal. It’s a lot to handle!

Most of us will skew to one side or the other: more thinking or more feeling; more fixing or more wallowing.

Compassionate Empathy is taking the middle ground and using your emotional intelligence to correctly respond to the situation. Does the situation call for quick action? Without either becoming overwhelmed by sadness or trying to fix things with logistics, compassion brings a mindful touch to tough situations.

[Source: Daniel Goldman and Enid Spitz via Heartmanity’s Blog]


I think I am more of the first and the last and less if not at all the middle one.

How about you?

Which kind of empath are you?

Why Being Estranged From Someone Is Nothing To Be Ashamed About.

When blood is thicker than water, but it’s so thick and so toxic, it’s drowning you.

Most everyone has a family member, friend, colleague, neighbor, or some person who is a strain to get along with.

Getting on a mutual wavelength just doesn’t happen. Communication is clunky, awkward, and uncomfortable. You find yourself making excuses to stay away or cut contacts short. You can never seem to enjoy being in the presence of one another. Your connection with that person becomes weaker and weaker until sometimes, you avoid or fade it out completely.

Yet something lingers. Perhaps you could have done better; maybe there is some key to connecting that you couldn’t figure out.

Family, by definition, is a group of people related by birth, marriage, and legal parameters. The expectation existing all around us is that these relations are a good thing or meant to be a good thing. Blood is thicker than water and all that. The simple reality I encounter is that no matter the birth lineage or inheritance of relations, it does not necessarily mean these individuals relate or fit with one another. Some families are like jigsaw puzzles whose pieces got placed in the wrong box.

Figuring out how to navigate differences, misunderstandings, and balancing individual needs in a group environment is a lot. It takes so many skills to get good at it while also requiring the temperament and constitution to tolerate the ruptures. When problems multiply, affections become deeply alienated; we can become estranged. It is painful when people you expect to support you don’t. Unexpressed, unresolved feelings can wreak havoc.

Estrangement, by definition, is a relationship that has soured and turned distant, even somewhat hostile. An estranged relationship causes discomfort. No one likes to run their fingers along splintered wood, and unless you find an emotional lathe, there is almost always some hurt.

AUTHOR: MARTINE J. BYER


Though this article in my personal opinion is somewhat incomplete, there are some points here that resonate with what I’m going through that, in the end, I decided to share it here. If I am the one who wrote it, I would elaborate and go further with details and give it a proper closure which seems to be lacking. Just a thought.

Strong Women Are Molded by the Hardships They Endure

Life, as we all know, can be painfully difficult at times. Many women just can’t seem to endure all the hardships. Some, however, are molded by the challenges and have found a way to deal with things. Strong women never let hardships define them and bring them down. They don’t get hurt by the fire – like a phoenix, they rise up from the ashes and are reborn.

Strong women learn from their mistakes and see them as challenges that will ultimately make them stronger and wiser. They are an example to follow and the inspiration we seek. The strength these women radiate is living proof that what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.

They believe in themselves and use pain as a shield. Unlike the rest of us, strong women do things differently in life. They are created by the storms they survive and have amazing traits that define them. Here are some of those traits we can’t help but admire:

They Don’t Fear Emotions

Many of us are afraid of our emotions and showing our vulnerable side. Not strong women, though – they are human after all and not afraid to show it. These women are not afraid of emotions – whenever they’re hit by hardship, they get off the ground, dust themselves, and move on.

They Believe in Themselves

Strong women know who they are and know what they want from life. Their inner voice guides them and they believe it. That’s how they know they’re on the right path.

They Seek Respect, not Attention

A strong woman is not interested in the limelight. She doesn’t want attention, but she surely seeks respect. You’ll never see these women beg for something – they are only interested in respect. They will never ask for it, of course. But don’t give them the respect they believe they deserve and they will walk away from you.

They Always Tell the Truth

No matter how hard it might be too hear, strong women will always tell the truth. Their hearts are always in the right place and honesty is a policy they live by. If the truth hurts someone’s feelings, they’re OK with it. They’d rather say it than spreading lies.

They Wear Pain As Armor

While we all live in fear of pain, strong women use it as armor. These women are survivors and will never give in to fear. They are brave warriors that stare in the face of fear and relish the challenge. Failures are stepping stones for them and that’s exactly what makes them so different than the rest of the crowd.

[Source: QuotesGate]

The Pursuit Of Happiness

Not all addictions are rooted in abuse or trauma, but I do believe they can all be traced to painful experiences. A hurt is at the center of all addictive behaviors. It is present in the gambler, the Internet addict, the compulsive shopper, and the workaholic. The wound may not be as deep and the ache not as excruciating, and it may even be entirely hidden—but it’s there. As we’ll see, the effects of early stress or adverse experiences directly shape both the psychology and the neurobiology of addiction in the brain.

– Dr. Gabor Maté

And what if one doesn’t have an addiction? Just a momentarily diversion that dwindles over time and starts again in another form?

I have that with things… One day it was shawls, another week bags, could be pizza also or smoothies. Then I get tired of them all and forget. During my wildest years, I used to drink ten screwdrivers on a Saturday night but never had a craving during weekdays. It went on for at least eight years or so and then from one day to another, I just woke up not wanting to touch alcohol anymore. No reasons, no purpose, just like that.

My momentarily “addiction” always starts with “liking” the taste, the touch, the looks… Then I want to have more of those. But no matter how hard I tried to be addicted to anything, I always get over it after a time without trying. The novelty disappears over time and it always never comes back.

Perhaps my addiction is (if you can call that an addiction) probably books. I can’t live without. And taking long walks and discovering new places. I become agitated if I can’t go out there and wander. And writing of course. I have got to write. I will go crazy if I would not be able to express my thoughts in writing.

For the rest, like a butterfly that flutters from bloom to bloom, I will continue to dance from one fleeting interest to one fleeting interest savoring the momentarily pleasure that the experience gives.

Till it is time to move on again___

when I lost the enjoyment.

The difference between a drinker and an alcoholic is; the one merely reads books, the other needs books to make it through the day. ― Gail Carriger

44704cca881b4fdef4dfc4163e9657fd

Infinite Jest

“If by the virtue of charity or the circumstance of desperation, you ever chance to spend a little time around a Substance-recovery halfway facility, you will acquire many exotic new facts […] That certain persons simply will not like you no matter what you do. Then that most nonaddicted adult civilians have already absorbed and accepted this fact, often rather early on […] That sleeping can be a form of emotional escape and can with sustained effort be abused […] That purposeful sleep-deprivation can also be an abusable escape. That gambling can be an abusable escape, too, and work, shopping, and shoplifting, and sex, and abstention, and masturbation, and food, and exercise, and meditation/prayer […] That loneliness is not a function of solitude […] That if enough people in a silent room are drinking coffee it is possible to make out the sound of steam coming off the coffee. That sometimes human beings have to just sit in one place and, like, hurt […] That there is such a thing as raw, unalloyed, agendaless kindness […] That the effects of too many cups of coffee are in no way pleasant or intoxicating […] That if you do something nice for somebody in secret, anonymously, without letting the person you did it for know it was you or anybody else know what it was you did or in any way or form trying to get credit for it, it’s almost its own form of intoxicating buzz.
That anonymous generosity, too, can be abused […]
That it is permissible to want […]
That there might not be angels, but there are people who might as well be angels.”

― David Foster Wallace

VFS_113aad23154e9abab1338c5e2678ad8a

We all matter – maybe less than a lot but always more than none.

The chance of the bread falling with the buttered side down is directly proportional to the cost of the carpet.

What this mean? If the sacrifice is lesser than the damage is it okay? Or it’s the other way around?

Oh, I know…

Care!

It’s about how important is something to you. Personally.

The value of something increases when you attach importance to it.

Yes!

That’s it!

Am I right?

Understanding Addiction

“I understand addiction now. I never did before, you know. How could a man (or a woman) do something so self-destructive, knowing that they’re hurting not only themselves but the people they love? It seemed that it would be so incredibly easy for them to just not take that next drink. Just stop. It’s so simple, really. But as so often happens with me, my arrogance kept me from seeing the truth of the matter.
I see it now though.
Every day, I tell myself it will be the last. Every night, as I’m falling asleep in his bed, I tell myself that tomorrow I’ll book a flight to Paris, or Hawaii, or maybe New York. It doesn’t matter where I go, as long as it’s not here. I need to get away from Phoenix—away from him—before this goes even one step further.
And then he touches me again, and my convictions disappear like smoke in the wind.
This cannot end well. That’s the crux of the matter, Sweets. I’ve been down this road before—you know I have—and there’s only heartache at the end. There’s no happy ending waiting for me like there was for you and Matt. If I stay here with him, I will become restless and angry. It’s happening already, and I cannot stop it. I’m becoming bitter and terribly resentful. Before long, I will be intolerable, and eventually, he’ll leave me. But if I do what I have to do, what my very nature compels me to do, and move on, the end is no better. One way or another, he’ll be gone. Is it not wiser to end it now, Sweets, before it gets to that point? Is it not better to accept that this happiness I have is destined to self-destruct?
Tomorrow I will leave. Tomorrow I will stop delaying the inevitable. Tomorrow I will quit lying to myself, and to him.
Tomorrow.
What about today, you ask? Today it’s already too late. He’ll be home soon, and I have dinner on the stove, and wine chilling in the fridge. And he will smile at me when he comes through the door, and I will pretend like this fragile, dangerous thing we have created between us can last forever.
Just one last time, Sweets. Just one last fix. That’s all I need.
And that is why I now understand addiction.”

― Marie Sexton

When It Rain It Pours

Shit happens, right? Some days the pile is just a little higher than others.  ― Rodney Riesel

You can say that again.

At the moment in my part of the world, it’s fucking storming.

Murphy’s Law all the way.

Sometimes I’m wondering what grave sins I’ve committed in my past lives to deserve capital punishments such as these.

The upside is: If I land in hell for whatever reason, I might actually enjoy it. And why not when I already have a lot of practice. Being there would be a walk in the park compared to what’s happening to me__ I would not say lately because it’s been going on for so long even these days doesn’t apply anymore.

The downside? Name it.

I can’t laugh about it anymore. Not even hysterically.

Change it? No can do. First of all, it’s not my doing. Never been.

Second: Unless I want to abandon ship and jump into the sea I better stay where I am and bail water out.