Thoughts For The Days

July 1 ~ “He’s got to make his own mistakes and learn to mend the mess he makes. He’s old enough to know what’s right and young enough not to choose it. He’s noble enough to win the world but weak enough to lose it.” ~ lyrics from New World Man by Rush

July 4 ~ “Home is not a place or a lifestyle, but the state of your heart and all the people who take their place in it.” ~ from Trail of Broken Wings by Sejal Badani

July 7 ~ Friends are great. Great friends are the best!

July 11 ~ We live. And, yes, we learn. But, what compels us to repeat the mistakes and the bad patterns of the past.

July 12 ~ I refuse to be just another option. Someone else can take that dirty job.

July 13 ~ Of course we can’t be friends anymore, silly. You betrayed me. “It is easier to forgive an enemy than to forgive a friend.” ~ William Blake

July 14 ~ Test case halted. 90 shelf life confirmed. Anyone can play a role for 90 days. But, in the end, the true self cannot be suppressed and always rises to break the facade.

July 15 ~ No matter how angry someone makes you, or how badly they hurt you, at some point you owe it to yourself to:

Forgive yourself for bad behavior in the heat of anger
Forgive them for the pain they caused you
Have compassion for the part of their life journey that brought them to that action

And….pray for them

You might not believe that they deserve any compassion. But, turn the tables and know that, if you were on the other side, you would want that from them at some point.

And then….turn your back and walk away, in peace.

July 26 ~ “…all the knowledge in the world is of no use to fools…and it’s a long road out of Eden…” ~ lyrics from Long Road Out of Eden by The Eagles

July 27 ~ It is courageous enough to live by being who you are. The real challenge is identifying who you could be and then striving for that. Success is possible when the support of like-minded friends and family is there to help you.

July 28 ~ “I {knew} the pieces fit ’cause I watched them fall away. Mildewed and smoldering. Fundamental differing….” Yup, yup!! Sad but inevitably true. ~ lyrics from Schism by Tool

© 2010-2016 Kimberly Yoss. All rights reserved. No part of this online publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, without prior approval from Kimberly Yoss.

No Perfect Candidate

I admit that, once upon a time not so long ago, I was one of those who liked Donald Trump when he first came onto the political stage. I liked the way his unabashed way of setting off public debate – on many issues that had for many years been taboo, or worse, circumvented by the popular media outlets because they were not politically correct to discuss – allowed even the talking heads on the Sunday morning news programs to openly discuss previously taboo issues.

I felt like he got people talking and debating, with less fear about repercussions of opinion or the violation of political correctness expectations.

But now, I fear that he has become maligned by his own stunted followers and the creeping shadow of his own poor business and political choices.

That said, I am not one of those who has gone skulking into the Clinton camp.  I think, in many ways, H. Clinton is as bad, if not worse, than Trump. She represents more of the same government ineptitude. She does not represent change. I would rather engage in civic disobedience, and vote my conscience (e.g. no vote at all), than to vote for the lesser of two evils.

In any case, neither one of the candidates is a viable choice.

Neither one of them has the moral conviction nor the insight to take this country to where it needs, and wants to go. Where it deserves to go.

Here is why:

  • Both candidates will have to battle a dilapidated and corrupt political system. It is the system that is so corrupt. Until the system is changed, the candidate who is slotted in will be mostly irrelevant.
  • Both candidates will continue to contend with their own shady personal and professional backgrounds.
  • Neither of the candidates has the best interest of the public in their sights, unless that public interest is juxtaposed to their own personal gain.
  • Both candidates are part of the corporate and political bastions of American society; basically, the “pillars” that have amassed money and power and use both to battle on their own fronts under the disguise of “fighting for the common man”.
  • It is the Electoral College results that matter, not the popular vote. The decision will be made outside of the public arena.

How many times in history have we seen that happen? Rarely do the masses win anything that they are due by the privileges granted by the Constitution because of the power struggle that goes on in places that none of us are privy to.

So…now…the masses battle among themselves. They claw at each other in order to prove the credentials of their favorite candidate. They scramble to have the last word, to prove that the candidate they favor is the best one. They search tainted media data to present as proof that somehow they are right and the words and actions of the other candidate are maligned.

When they can’t achieve the desired result by doing those things, they disparage the other candidate’s character. They resort to low and filthy tactics; anything to win the argument. They operate from a basis of emotion and hasty analysis. They react to propaganda, data which has already been run through the spin machine at least several times, worth no more than the kitty litter in the litter box, and the stuff that kitty drops in there.

They let go of their common sense in order to hop on the bandwagon of the candidate that the media machine has been geared to lead them to follow.

What they fail to understand is that for them, this fight must not be about candidates. We are way past that.

This fight must be focused on issues, and our pock-marked and crumbling political and social system.

This fight is about clear-minded people butting up against the beliefs of people as sheep, who either can’t be bothered with thinking through the issues with their own brain power or truly believe that our society has an element of truthfulness and purity left to it. They are led along by a shepherd into a pasture where they smell the poppies and eat the spiked grass. That spiked grass is the media propaganda that permeates our reality.

They are led to this place with wool over their eyes, obscuring the reality of the current situation.

As I wrap this up, I am thinking about how we fix this.

What does a clear-thinking non-sheeple American citizen do to make a difference?

Here are my meager attempts to enlighten us all:

  • Do your research using unbiased data from unbiased sources. It is very difficult to come by these days.
  • Take some time to get the pulse on what you believe is the most important issue.
  • Find and join an unbiased organization that supports and propels the solution of that issue to new heights.
  • Stick to the issues; avoid the propaganda.
  • Stick to the issues; don’t malign character, no matter how quickly it would help you win the argument.
  • Stick to facts; don’t use emotion to debate.
  • Remember that everyone is entitled to his or her own opinion, no matter how wrong you think it is. Move on; don’t dwell on it.
  • Don’t allow disagreements over these topics to divide you from your friends and family. Divided – we are all weaker.
  • Remove the rose-colored glasses that you wear and work to remove the tint of those others that you encounter.

Objectivity works best in order to ensure securing a win in the struggles of real life.

© 2010-2016 Kimberly Yoss. All rights reserved. No part of this online publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, without prior approval from Kimberly Yoss.

The Myth of the Other Woman

Yes. I said it out loud.

It is my belief that the idea of the “other woman” is a true myth.

And yes, I fully expect to get some backlash for that.

But, please, hear me out.

I believe that, like a fence, there are only two sides to the idea of the “other woman”:

  • the side where you get hurt
  • the side where the other woman gets hurt

Buried somewhere in there are different degrees of pain. Some of the pain lasts longer than the rest. This is a matter of perception, as most everything in life is. Other critical factors in the pain that is felt are the true level of commitment in the relationship, and the level of perceived commitment in the relationship of both the guy(s) and the gal(s).

Yes, I just inferred that it might be in your head. I can only say that because I have been there too – both when it is real, and when I manufactured it. As a writer and an analyst, I have a tendency to overthink  A LOT.

In reality, the idea of the “other woman” is not about the other woman at all; it is about you and the guy. It’s that simple.

At this point in our lives, most of us gals should have already seen both sides of this fence; and, depending on your perception, become connected to men who traverse both sides, and the middle. Needless to say, all of us have been damaged by it.

How much you are damaged by this scenario comes down to how you cope with your own identity, your honesty with that identity, and your honesty when communicating to your guy.

You become as damaged as you allow yourself to become.

The good news is that, like most everything in this life, you have a choice. Your choice is determined by the boundaries that you set for yourself, which in turn come from how you work through past relationships in conjunction with your own inner woman.

I, like many women my age, have seen my share of both sides. I have been hurt terribly. I have scars.

I have had to turn my back on a really good man because I chose not to be a part of jeopardizing his existing relationship after I found out that he and I were going down a dark path together. I have had to turn my back on two really good men because each of them overstepped the boundaries that I set for myself. The thing about that is I didn’t have a solid knowledge of those boundaries until I was already immersed in the situation.

In these cases, I was the other woman, just on different sides of the fence. They  were really good men who were struggling with their own issues and were straddling the fence in the middle.

But, I gave of myself to the best of my ability because it was the right thing to do. I didn’t point fingers, I didn’t get angry (well, maybe not too angry).

When I emerged, I was a stronger woman for all of it and continue to gain strength, wisdom, and can still love completely.

No matter what side of the “other woman” fence you are currently on, here are some pointers that I have tried and found to work well, if you have the strength to employ them consistently:

  • Be honest with yourself and your guy about exactly what type of relationship you both think you are in.
  • This involves a strong level of open communication.
  • Clearly identify – for yourself – what you will and will not put up with; then set the standard.
  • Be patient; sometimes it takes some time for an unfamiliar standard to become the norm.
  • When the norm is established, do not waver (too much).
  • Hold yourself, and him, accountable.
  • Be flexible; we are all people with our own demons and challenges.
  • When you get to the point of love, love completely and unconditionally, regardless of the outcome.
  • Protect your heart.
  • Remember that this is not all about you; there are two other people involved along with you.

This situation is not an easy one to navigate, particularly when there is so much bad and ill-informed literature out there. If you allow the bad advice in, it can result in empowering you to point fingers, label, control, and establish a selfish point of view in order to move through it. This type of advice will only complicate your situation.

Good luck being the other woman! If you’re lucky, you will learn to relax and enjoy the ride.

© 2010-2016 Kimberly Yoss. All rights reserved. No part of this online publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, without prior approval from Kimberly Yoss.

Tales From The Dating Scene: Replay

Until recently, I would have told you that – based on my own past experience – it is impossible to get back together with an ex and sustain it.

The behavior patterns are still there. The same things that broke your relationship up the first time are likely still lingering and will cause distress and pain again.

I would also have told you that getting back together with your ex probably is not psychologically or emotionally healthy. As you put yourself out on that limb again, with the same person and the same behaviors that were toxic before, you again expose yourself to risk that you have already lived through and moved past (or hopefully moved past). Pain you already experienced.

Like sticking yourself with a needle over and over or banging your head against a wall, getting back with an ex is like a distorted type of masochism.ex image

That is what I would have told you.

Until recently.

Let me share with you some things that I have learned during this new journey:

  1. Be extremely honest with yourself and with each other – where you are at now, and what you learned – both good and not so good – the first time around.
  2. Discuss the above from the beginning of this new journey – DO NOT DELAY. If you delay too long, you risk falling back into the same patterns.
  3. Recognize the great things about yourself and your ex. Now that you both have absorbed the bad behaviors, it is the perfect time to focus on the positive and good.
  4. Identify specific behaviors that you want to change this time – and share with each other. It is important to regain trust in each other. This is a fresh opportunity to grow and mature – together.
  5. Trust is not built in a vacuum. Take those small steps together to build that trust again, slowly.
  6. Relax, slow down, and let go. Enjoy the time together without clenching on too tightly.
  7. Try to reduce, if not eliminate, frivolous expectations.
  8. Maintain separate interests, friends, and goals. Do NOT lose yourself in the other.
  9. Do new things together and foster new experiences and new memories.

By no means am I suggesting that getting back with an ex is for everyone.

positive

But, one of the advantages of getting back with your ex is that you already know what you are getting into. Sure, some of that is irritating. But, on the other hand, there are sure to also be some enjoyable things that you honestly missed. Short of your ex being a murderer or being just plain extreme, it is that much less that you have to struggle to learn over again than if you were to get into a relationship with someone new.

You already know whether the other snores, how they take their coffee, how punctual they are, or how long they spend in the shower. What makes them laugh, what them smile, what makes them happy. Instead of re-learning that about someone new, you can take that same amount of time investigating the awesome things about your ex – just in case you both did not have time to do that the first time around.

In this way, you forge a new, stronger relationship. Who knows, it might be the second chance that you’ve both been waiting for.

ex-boyfriend-300x239

© 2010-2016 Kimberly Yoss. All rights reserved. No part of this online publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, without prior approval from Kimberly Yoss.

Tales From The Dating Scene: The 90-Day Shelf Life

What I am about to write might sound crass, or jaded. But it is the truth.

What you are about to read started several years ago when I began wondering why every relationship I decided to get into seemed to not be able to last longer than 90 days.

I think I have finally figured it out. It all comes down to shopping habits.

Think about how you shop. Whether you are shopping for food, or clothes, or towels, the process is usually the same. You pick up an item that interests you, you look at it, maybe view it from several angles, and then put it down. You scan down the shelf for other similar items. You pick up one or two. Put them down. Read a few labels, look at prices. You think about how that item will fit into your house and your life. Eventually, you come to a decision and buy it. Or put it down in the interest of something else.

This is the life of a commodity in the eyes of a consumer.

From within the dating scene, the men you meet and date  are the same, only a commodity. And you are only a commodity to them.

“Here’s something else to think about: calling when you say you’re going to is the very first brick in the house you are building of love and trust. If he can’t lay this one stupid brick down, you ain’t never gonna have a house baby, and it’s cold outside.” ~ Greg Behrendt, He’s Just Not That Into You: The No Excuses Truth to Understanding Guys. 

Similar to the shopping scene and process, you go online and view their images, you read their bios, you decide if they would be something you like, you weigh their qualities against those of other men, maybe you try them on by going on a date or two, and then you take the plunge…or not.

Straightforward. Simple. Man or woman, we are all doing it the same way.

With some items, like food, or even clothes, you get them home and maybe use them or put them away somewhere.

No matter what, every commodity has a shelf life. A shelf life is defined as a period of time during which the product is considered most usable. For food, this could mean that eventually the food will expire and have to be thrown away because it is no longer safely edible. For clothes, this could mean that after so many washings it will begin to look faded or even fall apart.

Same applies to relationships on the dating scene. They all have a shelf life.

“Never rearrange your life in order to meet Mr. Darcy half way. If he couldn’t see your worth at the moment you met then he won’t two years later.” ~ Shannon L. Adler

There are articles out there that suggest that the shelf life of a new relationship is biologically and scientifically proven. The shelf life of a new relationship in the dating scene is roughly 90 days.

The explanation for the 90-day shelf life on new relationships is compelling. Basically, it states that within the first 90 days of meeting someone that we are attracted to, our hormones and instincts make it virtually impossible for us to see the things about that person that we should be. We are wired to look past the personality quirks and the idiosyncrasies in order to facilitate procreation. We are wired to not focus on the red flags unless they are life-threatening. To read more, go to Your Tango.

So, yes, the honeymoon phase that we all go through is not a myth and is biologically based. Only after the hormones and instinctual nature have simmered down do our brains then have the capacity to analyze what we are up against.

“One of the best times for figuring out who you are & what you really want out of life? Right after a break-up.” ~ Mandy Hale, The Single Woman: Life, Love, and a Dash of Sass. 

Recently, during a forensic analysis with a group of friends over my most recent failed relationship, I was told about the concept of a 90-day rule. My first reaction was that it had to do with not having sex in a relationship for 90 days. Personally, I don’t think sex has a lot to do with whether or not a relationship succeeds.

It was explained to me that the 90-day rule is more about just having fun and using the period of 90 days to determine whether or not you really want to continue with this person. That after 90 days, either one of you can decide that it’s not going to work or you can decide that hey this is kind of good and let’s keep going.

What a new fresh approach. You mean, I can look at these guys as a “thing”, a commodity? I don’t have to jump in and try to make it work at all costs? I can enjoy myself and look past their oddities, and in 90 days just say no to the continuing ordeal?

“You picked a lemon, throw it away. Lemonade is overrated. Freaks should remain at the circus, not in your apartment. You already have one asshole. You don’t need another. Make a space in your life for the glorious things you deserve. Have faith.” ~ Greg Behrendt

It was a completely different perspective. And, it is completely out of line with my whole process of shopping. When I shop, and then buy something, I tend not to return things quickly. I make them work. But, I am also highly selective and put a lot of time into the initial selection. I am not an impulse shopper by any means.

On the flipside, I now understand that the men I have dated are exactly that, impulse shoppers. And I was their commodity, along with all the other women whom they had previously used and then discarded.

I buy value and in small quantities, with the intent to nurture and grow it. They bought quantity with the intent of going out and buying something else the minute they became bored or dissatisfied. And, like returning it to the store because it doesn’t do what you thought it would, I became their commodity.

Interesting – the things we learn when we look under the rocks and into the dark crevices.

I am so excited for the next “relationship”. I have done the analysis, learned something new, and have a new toolset to play with next time.

Watch out guys – your time is up.

© 2010-2016 Kimberly Yoss. All rights reserved. No part of this online publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, without prior approval from Kimberly Yoss.

Thoughts for the Days in February

February 1 ~ “Life with God is not immunity from difficulties, but peace in difficulties.” ~ C.S. Lewis

February 5 ~ “The devil whispers ‘You can’t withstand the storm.’ The warrior replies ‘I AM the storm.'”

February 17 ~ “You ride the waves and don’t ask where they go.” ~ Standing Outside a Broken Phone Booth by Primitive Radio Gods

February 29 ~ In a perfect world, a hug really would make all the pain and hurt go away.

© 2010-2016 Kimberly Yoss. All rights reserved. No part of this online publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, without prior approval from Kimberly Yoss.

Catch-up Thoughts For The Days

OK – so now I’m all caught up.

November 6 ~ Forget kindergarten! Everything we really need to know is embedded in the music we listened to in our teenage years. “Surrender, surrender, but don’t give yourself away.” Cheap Trick knew the answer. How did I miss that all these years?

November 8 ~ “Courage is fear that has said it’s prayers and has decided to go forward anyways.” ~ Joyce Meyer

November 10 ~ “Every dog has it’s day; every day has it’s was of being forgotten.” ~ lyrics from What Would You Say by Dave Matthews

December 8 ~ Contrition, clemency, brutal honesty, and humility. Let’s see where this goes…

December 11 ~ Time to retreat to the relative safety of the space below the radar for awhile. Apparently some people don’t fully appreciate proactive and forthright.

December 13 ~ “The aim of argument, or of discussion, should not be victory, but progress” ~ Joseph Joubert

December 16 ~ “You have enemies? Good. That means you’ve stood up for something sometime in your life.” ~ Winston Churchill

December 17 ~ “Lord remove anybody out of my life that means me no good, serves me no good purpose, and is not real and loyal. Bless me with the discernment to realize and give me the strength to let go and don’t look back.” ~ unknown

December 18 ~ “It’s no who you were; it’s who you are.” ~ lyrics from Isadore by Incubus

December 19 ~ “Change the system, and you’ll change the behaviors of the people in that system.” ~ It’s a Trap! Agile Lessons from Star Wars by Todd Sheridan (www.rallydev.com)

December 24 ~ The lines in the stores during Christmas shopping must be what livestock feel like while in line to be slaughtered.

December 25 ~ This day is not about how tall the tree is, how many nutcrackers we have, how many presents we give or receive, how perfect our dining table looks, nor even about whether we have turkey or ham for Christmas dinner. This day is about peace, hope, and joy in what a baby named Jesus brought to us. It is about the salvation He gave our souls – salvation from sin, the smallest to the largest – in the name of God.

December 26 ~ “Christmas, my child is love in action. Every time we love, every time we give, it’s Christmas.” ~ Dale Evans

December 28 ~ “The best revenge is always to just happily move on and let karma do the rest.” ~ unknown

December 29 ~ “People are often unreasonable and self-centered. Forgive them anyway. If you are kind, people may accuse you of ulterior motives. Be kind anyway. If you are honest, people may cheat you. Be honest, anyway. If you find happiness, people may be jealous. Be happy anyway. The you do today may be forgotten tomorrow. Do good anyway. Give the world the best you have and it may never be enough. Give your best anyway. For you see, in the end, it is between you and God. It was never between you and them anyway.” ~ Mother Teresa

© 2010-2016 Kimberly Yoss. All rights reserved. No part of this online publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, without prior approval from Kimberly Yoss.