|Today, I dedicate this blog to the dedicated gardener and my friend Linda Christian who was celebrating her birthday when this was first posted.|
|Today, I dedicate this blog to the dedicated gardener and my friend Linda Christian who was celebrating her birthday when this was first posted.|
SOCIAL MEDIA, FRIEND OR FOE? Over the years, I have tossed this issue in my mind several times. Even though I communicate through most of the social media limbs such as Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Linked In, and my blog utilizing Word Press. I have experienced some success in reaching more people in more countries and this is very satisfactory. I have regained contact with lost friends and classmates through Facebook. It seems on the surface as friendly sources of communication but we should look at all the pros and cons of putting your “stuff” out on public or friendly display. This is the purpose of this blog. Let’s look at social media and then you can weigh in on whether our world is better off with this entanglement or if we are shooting ourselves in the foot.
I found an interesting article which displays both the Pros and Cons of Social Media (for the article’s location link click on underlined title) and I thought I would kick off the blog message with this article for us to review:
My generation grew up in an era not known for leaps in technological advances. The lack of fun, lithium-ion powered iThings forced us to engage in antiquated traditions like going outside, socializing or reading. On the upside, living offline allowed us to keep screw-ups to limited audiences. We also experienced less bullying, anxiety and depression than later peers.
Today, we often perceive anyone who shuns social media as old or out of touch. However, they might be the most mentally fit among us. In reality, most people have little awareness of the frequency with which they check their phones. In a 2015 study, participants checked their phones an average of 85 times each day and spent 5.05 hours per day using their smartphone. This is concerning because several studies and researchers have associated social media with several psychiatric disorders, including depressive symptoms, anxiety and low self-esteem.
Consider these 10 notable pro and con stances regarding social media use.
- Messaging on social media sites can lead to face-to-face interactions when plans are made via the sites.
- Social media increases voter participation and facilitates political change.
- Social media helps reduce loneliness of senior citizens who are socially isolated.
- Social media allows for quick diffusion of public health and safety information during crisis events.
- The U.S. military and the Department of Veterans Affairs use social media to help prevent suicide.
- Social media can help disarm social stigmas like anxiety or depression.
- Crowdsourcing on social media allows people to attain a goal, empowering users to achieve positive change.
- Social media provides academic research to a wider audience, allowing people access to previously inaccessible educational resources.
- Social media sites can help improve overall well-being by providing users with a large social group creating a “contagion” effect.
- Professional networking sites like LinkedIn greatly assist companies to find personnel and job seekers to find work.
- Social media posts cannot be entirely deleted.
- Social media can endanger our military, journalists and activists.
- Social media use is associated with personality and brain disorders.
- Students who are heavy social media users tend to have lower grades.
- Social media can exacerbate feelings of disconnect and put children at higher risk for anxiety, depression, low self-esteem, eating disorders and even suicide.
- Criminals can use social media to commit and promote crimes.
- Social media can be a drain on time and use up hours that you can’t get back.
- Advertising practices of social media sites may create an invasion of privacy.
- Social media facilitates sexting, which can lead to revenge porn, criminal charges and a proliferation of personal images.
- Social media use can cause personality and brain disorders, ADHD and self-centered personalities—particularly in youth.
Clinical psychologist and author of The Teen Girl’s Survival Guide, Dr. Lucie Hemmen writes that, “Most people experience huge benefits from taking a social media break. There is a way in which cultivating and maintaining your online identity can replace an authentic connection to your true self. The more grounded you are in your authentic value as a human being, the less likely you are to be a heavy user of social media and also to be negatively affected by it.”
For example, if you know that your value is deeper and more complex than what you post and how many likes and comments you receive, then you are probably social media resilient.
The more grounded you are in your authentic value as a human being, the less likely you are to be a heavy user of social media and also to be negatively affected by it.
On the flipside, Dr. Hemmen adds that, “If you struggle with feelings of insecurity and find yourself putting a lot of time and effort into portraying yourself a particular way on social media, then you are more vulnerable and would benefit profoundly from regular breaks. You will have the space needed to move toward your true self.”
Start by temporarily limiting your access. Challenge yourself to abstain from social media for a full week by removing Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and other social media platforms from your phone for a duration of time. Once the initial withdrawal anxiety subsides, take notice if you feel better or worse. Being offline might just be a vacation for you.
Related:Why You’ve Got to Put Your Phone Down—Seriously
I am not advocating to stop using social media as I am a frequent user of getting my thoughts and writing on the blog, my novels, and my poetry/quotes through many sources. I have met so many good, new social media friends by reaching out and hopefully touching them in a positive light…..Arline Miller, blogger and author.
Final Thought by Blogger: My thoughts are self control in the use of social media as any other facet of lifestyle. If you are wondering or even worrying you spend too much time on Social Media….you probably are. If you find yourself taking the comments and/or how many or little likes……. you could take a social media break. One more final thought (not going to worry how you perceived this one LOL): If you looked forward to reading this blog on social media…..you may want to make your own list of the pros and cons of social media. I mentioned this topic on Facebook and I received more pros than cons of using Facebook. I found it nice to hear people talking about the good things of social media and how they reconnected. I am a recipient of this pleasure too but have wondered what has been wrong with my phone and legs? Why haven’t I tried to find these beautiful friends before Facebook? I ask that we all think about this thought a little and maybe revamp some of our socializing habits. Maybe look up an old friend and go for coffee, lunch, or a walk in the park. LIVE LIFE, LOVE LIFE, AND LIVE LIFE TO THE FULLEST by surrounding yourself with positive actions.
(C) Copyright 2012-2018 Arline Miller of Sipping Cups of Inspiration with all rights and privileges reserved. Third party material is sourced with links to original location if known for credit reference.
FOCUS ON NATURE’S BEAUTY TO CREATE.
the center of interest or activity.
“this generation has made the environment a focus of attention”
synonyms: center, focal point, central point, center of attention, hub, pivot, nucleus, heart, core, cornerstone, linchpin, cynosure
“schools are a focus of community life”
an act of concentrating interest or activity on something.
“our focus on the customer’s requirements”
synonyms: emphasis, accent, priority, attention, concentration More
the point of origin of an earthquake.MEDICINE
the principal site of an infection or other disease.
the part of a sentence given prominence, usually for emphasis or contrast, e.g., Bob in it was Bob who came, not Bill.
the state or quality of having or producing clear visual definition.”his face is rather out of focus”
synonyms: focal point, point of convergence More
another term for focal point.
the point at which an object must be situated with respect to a lens or mirror for an image of it to be well defined.
a device on a lens that can be adjusted to produce a clear image.
one of the fixed points from which the distances to any point of a given curve, such as an ellipse or parabola, are connected by a linear relation.verbverb: focus; 3rd person present: focuses; past tense: focused; past participle: focused; gerund or present participle: focusing; 3rd person present: focusses; past tense: focussed; past participle: focussed; gerund or present participle: focussing
(of a person or their eyes) adapt to the prevailing level of light and become able to see clearly.”try to focus on a stationary object”
cause (one’s eyes) to focus.
“trying to focus his bleary eyes on Corbett”
adjust the focus of (a telescope, camera, or other instrument).
“they were focusing a telescope on a star”
synonyms: bring into focus; More
(of rays or waves) meet at a single point.
(of a lens) make (rays or waves) meet at a single point.
(of light, radio waves, or other energy) become concentrated into a sharp beam of light or energy.
(of a lens) concentrate (light, radio waves, or energy) into a sharp beam.
pay particular attention to.”the study will focus on a number of areas in Wales”
FOCUS is one of the best ingredients for the formula for success. Let me say it this way, “How many times have you sat and pondered (or in essence, focused) on one simple word, photo, poem, etc. until you had an idea of your own. It simply came to you. The possible reason for the result? FOCUS. You were able to eliminate the white noise of this world and tune into your inner self.
TUNE OUT; TUNE IN! Focus on something like this photo or an object in nature itself. Look intently at the object, animal, photo or image until you don’t hear the outside, distracting noise and I feel you will be enlightened to new thoughts or ideas.
(C) Copyright 2012-2018 Arline Miller with all rights and privileges reserved. Third part material sourced to original location for credit reference.
Look — you know what’s important to you.
(Stop shaking your head — deep down, you know what’s important.)
But what’s important to you is not important to everyone else.
This is fine and normal, except that some people will try to downplay your priorities.
They will try to make you put their priorities in front of your own.
They will try to make you a spectator in your own life.
They will try to make you second-class.
And if you don’t do this — watch out.
They will try and play on your sense of obligation so you’ll keep serving them.
They might even say they neeeeeeeeeed you.
Or at least walk away from people who have dramatically different priorities than you.
Priorities so radically different that they can’t coexist without one eating the other alive.
Get clear on what matters to you.
Protect where your energy goes and protect your focus.
Take everything inside of you that used to blindly go out into the world trying to please others and reverse it.
But when you do this — be ready for backlash.
Be ready for others to fight you.
Others will feel irritated and threatened when you no longer serve them.
When you set boundaries and say “No”, they will get offended.
Don’t let this backlash stop you.
Cut off anyone who refuses to let you put your own priorities first.
Stop surrounding yourself with people who refuse to support what’s important to you.
Instead, start spending time with like-minded people who will support you, your priorities, and your goals.
Structure your life so you’re protecting your time and energy in the places that matter most to YOU.
And let others do the same.
FEATURED BIBLE VERSE:
15 A miserable heart means a miserable life; a cheerful heart fills the day with song. 16 A simple life in the Fear-of-God is better than a rich life with a ton of headaches.
(C) Copyright 2012-2018 Arline Miller with rights and privileges reserved. Third Party Material Sourced if known for reference credit.
TODAY THE WORD is MOTHERHOOD. Today, once a year, we celebrate Mothers Day. Flowers and gifts are sent with beautiful cards full of wonderful words for the fantastic Mothers to cry over, laugh and enjoy. There are lunches and dinners with children coming home or having their Mothers coming to their home. Pampering is at its finest on this special day. For those of us who have lost our Mothers, we reminisce over the wonderful memories of times past. With so much tenderness, do we spend pouring over old photos, running our fingers over those photos as if we are reaching out and touching our loving Mothers, and smile and cry sometimes at the same time.
Why do Mothers mean so much to us? I think it goes back to our birth having already formed a bond of warmth when associated with the Mother carrying the baby for nine months. The bond is molded more when the first years of closeness of nurturing, training, feeding, caring for the child. When a child has a boo boo, they usually seek out Mom and want it kissed and made better. As the child grows up, it is usually a need for approval from her to make all of the accomplishments worth the effort. Even in sports, the child looks first to the Dad for pride, but also looks to Mom for the loving seal of approval. What is more “Mother-like” needs? It is the need for comfort when the child loses a game, or doesn’t make the needed hit for the winning run, or doesn’t make the team. God blessed Moms to understand this need and blessed them to open their arms, rub those heads, and say the right words to make it okay. When a pet dies, it is usually Mom who wipes the tears away and assures the child it will be all right. When the son or the daughter gets their heart broken for the first time and sometimes more times than expected, Mom assures them, the one that is special enough will come along and they will be better off.
Now for the deeper thought……God made Mothers to give us a physical being to comfort us on earth while He comforts our spirits. God gave us Fathers to build our strength and character and God gave us both parents to give us all we would need from physical parents. God will furnish our spiritual needs and our salvation accomplishments. As God sees us move into His light, God glows with pride as our earthly fathers glow; God loves His Children even more than our earthly mothers love us. Today, if you are blessed to have your Mother here on earth, hug her tight, tell her over and over how much you love her. Say a prayer, like I have prayed a prayer of thanks for my precious Mother and how, while she lived; she loved her children with a passion unmatched by any other love. Happy Mothers Day to all Mothers reading this blog! You are special in your children’s’ eyes.
What is motherhood? What does it mean to be a mother? These questions are as challenging to answer as they are simple. Yes, to give birth; yes, to adopt children; yes, to have a family. But being a mother is also about much more than that, isn’t it? There’s some large, overwhelming, and beautiful piece at the center of motherhood that is so hard to put words to. It’s a feeling, not an explanation. Maybe that piece is best called love. If so, it is truly a unique love reserved for the mother/child relationship. And when you’ve felt it, you know it.
Since we’re just a few days away from Mother’s Day, we put this question to 18 moms: “What does it mean to be a mother?” The responses we heard were lovely, inspirational, and downright funny! Read them all below.
“For me, motherhood is seeing the profound value in learning about who your children are, and then encouraging and teaching them to be the best versions of themselves. It is my greatest hope that this acceptance and unconditional love will empower and strengthen my children as well as foster self-confidence and kindness!”
“Motherhood is truly a remarkable gift and a privilege that I hold very close to my heart. To me, being a mother means to be fearless4, to be a positive role model, to be a continuous cheerleader for every milestone my children will experience, to demonstrate the abundance of unconditional love that has no end and to cherish the countless memories that is truly priceless.”
“To me, being a mother is the greatest job in the world. Helping my girls through all the things life throws them, while also lifting them up so they can reach for the stars and grab one! That’s what being a mom is all about—always being there—the shoulder to cry on, the cheerleader to never give up, the one that gives the standing ovation, the familiar hand to hold.”
“Being a mother means being completely and totally overwhelmed (in the best possible way) by love, joy, responsibility, and selflessness. Motherhood means sleepless nights, big belly laughs, caterpillars on the coffee table, finger-painting in the kitchen, stubbed toes, and gapped toothed grins. Motherhood has made life more colorful than I ever knew it could be. Being a mom means I have two little people who walk around with my heart and soul in the palms of their sweet, smudgy hands.”1
“To me, being a mother means getting to see all the possibility in the world through your children’s eyes, and also wanting to be the kindest and most generous version of yourself, so that your children can look up to you. On a day to day level, being a mother means being tired, sometimes grumpy and never left alone, and then, in one funny, loving or meaningful moment with your kids, realizing that it’s all completely worth it. Times one million.”
“Being a mother means being an emotional blankie for your children. They snuggle with you at night, run to you when they’re hurt, and stand behind you in scary situations. There’s nothing more warm and fuzzy.”
“For me, being a mother means it is MY responsibility to give my children the tools they need to live a happy and meaningful life. In the case of my daughters, Lily and Melanie, I wanted to empower them with a skill set that would allow them to create independent careers and avoid the glass ceiling…they are on their way with confidence and the sky is the limit.”
“Being a mother means, knowing when to talk and knowing when to listen…understanding that there is no learning curve. Every day is an adventure (especially when you are raising three boys…Boy oh Boy oh Boy). I would not trade my best day before my kids were born for the worst day after. Motherhood is: a life time adventure, the hardest non-paying 24 hour job you will ever do, and my greatest achievement!”1
Being a mom means that “sacrificing my body, my time, my finances, my sleep, and my mental health to raise my kids will be worth it in the end, because life isn’t about me anymore. I just hope my kids survive my weaknesses, and realize I love them more than anything.”
“Parenting is raising a child to be the best they can be. Being a mother is different: it means providing that indescribable feeling of comfort, no matter the age of the child. It’s being that person you call on that makes you feel better and doesn’t even need to say anything.”
“Being a mother means learning, listening, leading, laughing, loving, and living in the moment . . . all while executing the myriad details of life with aplomb.”
“Motherhood is to sleep with one eye open and always worry. To constantly feel guilty about SOMETHING. To have your heart so filled with love you think it might explode and then have it broken all in the space of less that 60 seconds. To be a guide, coach, cheerleader, policewoman, superhero, ‘kissy monster,’ friend and confidant, even when you have the flu and all you want to do is hide under the covers. To do your best and remember in the hardest of times that the tantrums will pass, teenagers grow out of it, nothing ends a bad parenting moment like a big hug, and most importantly that it’s okay not to be perfect.”
“Being a mother means getting your toddler into his car seat as fast as possible (and without any tantrums) when all he wants is to ‘drive’ the car himself. It means leaving the house earlier so you have a few extra minutes to let him sit in the front seat in the driveway and ‘drive’ before going anywhere. Being a mother means trying to make the best of every situation, choosing your battles, and planning ahead!”
“A mother never says to her child, ‘You owe me.’ This is why1 her love is boundless, endless, seamless, selfless—unconditional. This is why her love multiplies and divides to embrace her own children and then theirs. There is a Mother Theresa in every mother and she should be celebrated (on Mother’s Day and) every day.”
“Being a mother, with its challenges and rewards, has shaped me into the person I never imagined I could become. Protecting and advocating for our children is something all mothers strive for, and for me this is especially true for my child with autism who needs me as an advocate and a voice. It’s been the best assertiveness training!”
FEATURED BIBLE VERSE:
As one whom his mother comforts, so I will comfort you; you shall be comforted in Jerusalem.
(C) Copyright 2012-2018 Arline Miller with all rights and privileges reserved. Third party material including photos are sourced, if known, to original location for credit reference.
|Quick Lunch Idea on HEALTHY BITES|
The best portion control tips for easy and fast weight loss.1 of 15 Getty Images
Portion control tips2 of 15 Getty Images
Start with a glass of H2O
4 of 15 Getty Images
Add veggie fillers5 of 15 Getty Images
Dine on dinnerware that helps you lose6 of 15 Getty Images
Make carbs the topper instead of the base7 of 15 Getty Images
Set the scene for slower eating
8 of 15 Getty Images
Work for your food
9 of 15 Getty Images
Don’t eat from the bag or box
10 of 15 Getty Images
Slurp your appetizer
11 of 15 Getty Images
Take a lap before serving yourself
12 of 15 Getty Images
Drink from a tall glass
13 of 15 Getty Images
Limit mealtime distractions
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Use smaller serveware and dishes15 of 15 Getty Images
End your meal with a new kind of sweet treat
TODAY THE WORDS are LIFE’S STRAND OF PEARLS. In anticipation of reaching an important goal for the blog of 150,000 page views, I went back to my log of posts and found this one. I thought we might enjoy some pearly whites this morning.
Pearls are unique among gemstones because they don’t arise from the depths of the earth but from the sea. They require no special cutting or polishing to maximize their lustrous beauty, which has been treasured since ancient times and ensures that pearl jewelry is always in style.
THE HISTORY OF PEARL JEWELRY
Pearls were used in jewelry at least as far back as ancient Greece, and until the 20th century pearls were one of the most valued gems, if not the most valuable, in many cultures. The rules of the Byzantine empire dictated that only the emperor was allowed to wear pearls, and other societies had rules about who could and could not wear these little treasures. The sixteenth century in England was known as the Pearl Age, reflecting the prestige carried by pearls at that time.
Pearls became more accessible in the early 1900s once people in Asia discovered how to create cultured pearls. By carefully placing a small nucleus into a living oyster, a pearl forms around the nucleus, allowing pearls to be created in oyster farms.
THE SYMBOLISM OF PEARLS
In many ancient societies pearls symbolized the moon and were imbued with magical properties. Ancient Chinese civilizations believed that wearing pearls protected a person from fire and dragons, and other cultures have associated them with chastity and modesty. In Victorian England small seed pearls were often used in mourning jewelry to symbolize tears.
PEARLS AS GIFTS
Pearls have long been exchanged as gifts. When 13th century explorer Marco Polo visited Mongolian emperor Kublai Khan he reportedly presented him with the stunning Arco Valley Pearl, which weighs in at 575 carats and is more than three inches long (the pearl was auctioned off in Abu Dhabi in 2007 and its whereabouts are unknown). A famously beautiful pearl called La Peregrina was given by Prince Phillip II of Spain to his bride Mary during the 16th century. La Peregrina, a white, pear-shaped saltwater pearl, had a series of royal owners until the 1960s, when actor Richard Burton gave it to his jewelry-obsessed wife Elizabeth Taylor. Taylor had a necklace of pearls and rubies designed to showcase La Peregina.
Although famous for singing that “diamonds are a girl’s best friend,” one of Marilyn Monroe’s most treasured pieces of jewelry was a simple sixteen-inch string of pearls given to her by Joe DiMaggio during their honeymoon in Japan. Pearls were always a favorite accessory of 20th century style icon Grace Kelly, both during her screen star days and once she became Princess Grace of Monaco. Her husband Prince Rainier gave her a luxurious pearl-and-diamond jewelry set that she wore frequently.
FEATURED BIBLE VERSE:
Matthew 13:45 – Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a merchant man, seeking goodly pearls
(c) copyright 2012-2018 Arline Lott Miller. The material here copyrighted, use only by permission. Third party material is sourced to original location if known for credit reference.