Can You List Ten Things You Like About Yourself?

Ten Things I LikeI was watching a show on CNN about addiction when one of the people being interviewed mentioned she had been struggling for days working on an exercise that could help her in her recovery.  The exercise she was struggling with was listing ten things she liked about herself.

I didn’t think much about it.  But later in the day, I wondered, can I do that? List ten things I like about myself?  And I added another caveat;  can I do it as quickly as I could write ten things I hate about myself? Because I’ll be honest, I could spit out 20 things in 20 seconds of all the things I hate about myself pretty easily…  sad but true!

So, I tried it.  I sat down, with the timer on my cell and listed ten things that I liked about myself. I stayed away from physical attributes (only list one if you must)  and then, when I was done, I went back and listed why I liked or loved these things about myself.

I have to tell you – a very interesting little learning moment for me.  And, it was…well, enlightening to say that least, and kind of fun.

Carmen’s List 

  • I love that I have great instincts. I’m hardly ever wrong when I go with my gut. This has to do with people or moments.  Most people I read within 30 seconds and I’m rarely wrong about them and although moments may surprise me or scare me, I’m never so thrown I can’t function.
  • I love that I’m extremely logical. I bring logic to a lot of things I do – whether it’s in explaining something, building something, creating something. I enjoy learning the order in the chaos of things. The patterns.  It intrigues me and really is the best way I function.
  • I love that I like to learn. With that comes the fact that once I learn something I don’t forget it if I care about it. Nine times out of ten, if I learned it, I care about it. But being a sponge for anything new is another great quality I love about myself.
  • I love that I don’t talk about what I don’t know. Rarely will anyone ever catch me discussing something I know nothing about. I love this about myself because I notice how many people constantly talk about something they don’t know.  It happens most often with movies.  People will trash a movie and if you ask them if they’d seen it, they’ll say “no”.  If it were just movies, it wouldn’t be such a bad thing, but people do it with politics, economics, worldly events, family issues, medical issues… hey, here’s a free bit of wisdom:  An easy way to seem like you’re really smart, is to admit when you don’t know something.  Seriously!  I’m not any smarter than anyone else, but I don’t talk about what I don’t know. Period. And when I don’t know something, I ask something.  Easy.
  • I love that I am able to sit with anyone of any race, age, color, gender, sexual orientation, economic status, celebrity, politician, Republican, Democrat, friend of foe… and fit right in. I am comfortable around people and have an innate ability to understand them, talk to them. There is something very “chameleon” about it. But not in a negative way. It’s not that I change who I am EVER.  But, that who I am is malleable to the circumstance.  I know myself so well, that I can find a way to connect with anyone.  It has to do with empathy. Finding a way to connect with another soul on the planet.
  • I love that I’m a very optimistic person. It’s not blind optimism, but it’s always being able to find the light in a dark circumstance. When things are bad, I find myself living in hope. Finding that source that will lead me to the next step.  Truly optimistic.
  • I love that I held onto my “Latina-ness” even though I lost my mom at such an early age and had to force myself to learn more of what it means to be Latina on my own. I know that’s a weird one, because I am Latina, but knowing my back story and how easily it would have been not to learn Spanish, not to understand and fit in with my mother’s culture, would have been an easy thing for this American to do.  And sadly, so many of us lose our culture along the way  – but what makes America so beautiful is the mix that everyone brings to the table. If I had been born to Scottish parents and lost them at a young age, I would have done the same thing.  Clearly it was my way of holding onto a piece of my past, my mom, but it also has other benefits as well.
  • Physically, without a doubt, I love my skin color. “..you were kissed by the sun…” my mother used to tell me.  And I remember that phrase after the all these years.  And even though my hands are older, I have some wrinkles showing, some cellulite here and there, some changes in tone and elasticity… I still see all the beauty that is my cinnamon colored skin.  Sometimes I do feel bad about it.  I mean, honestly, I was born with it, it’s not like I did anything to have it, but I have to acknowledge it just the same.  Loving who WE are, skin color and all, clearly is and was an important part of my strength growing up.
  • I love that I’m still a kid most days. This may seem strange or may seem like I’m in denial of some sort, but I’m not. I think one of the worst things I hear from people who are older than me is this “giving up” sentiment. Like somehow turning 40 was Hogwarts Teethe end of life as they knew it.  I’ve had people say to me, “We’re different now, we’re so much older now” and “It’s for the new generation.”  WTF?  Hello!  I’m in my 40’s, I’m not dead!  Jeez! I hope if I’m blessed to live till I’m 90+ that I’m still walking around workin’ my magic and still dreaming of all the new possibilities!  And I think that’s the essence of being like a kid most days. I don’t mean not keeping to your responsibilities, but I mean, keeping in a state of awe, freshness and aliveness. Again, it goes to being a very optimistic person.  Being kid-like really just means always living in the moment, in the right here and right now and having the energy to play in it!
  • I love that I love people. I do. Even when the worst of us seems to burst through more painfully than I feel need be, I still love that eventually the human spirit figures it out.  I love all types of humans — even the ones I don’t understand.  Individually, I may hate a few – and I do, and yes, I use the word “hate” purposely. But as a collective, as a species, I am fascinated by how we all function.  Wow, I’ve never admitted that out loud (or on paper), but it is true. I love that I love people and always look for the best in us, even when we are showing the worst of who we are.

Hmm… that was kinda fun.  And interesting.

Have a sweet day!

Carmen

 

 

 

My Letter to Santa

Dear  Santa,

I’m getting my letter in EARLY!  Truth is, I’ve been a REAL good girl this year.  I mean SPECTACULAR!

Just in case you get a little confused, I thought I’d remind you of how GOOD I’ve been!

For starters, I’ve been patient.  Real patient.  More patient than I’ve ever been in my entire life!  With people, with circumstances, with anything and everything’s that’s been thrown my way.  And can we be a little honest here? A LOT’s been thrown my way this year BIG TIME!  But that’s okay. I can handle it.

Now, I’ve also been very giving.  Let’s be fair, I’ve always “given”.  But this year, I think I’ve done much more than any other year.  Ironically, I’ve had less to give financially, but I’ve given more of my heart, my time and my love. It didn’t matter that it’s been tough all year, I still work on the premise of always trying to give more than I receive (Selfish really.  I like how it feels to give – a secret I learned from you long ago!).   All and all I think I’ve done pretty well on the “giving” end regardless!

Let’s see, what else?  Oh, I’ve also been understanding.  I mean, VERY understanding!  I’ve done my best to understand why people treat people the way they do. Why some are so cheap or angry or just plain stupid!  (Oops, sorry, I shouldn’t be calling people stupid).  But I’ve tried.  I’ve really tried to understand why people lie so very much to each other but more astonishingly to themselves.  And I have to admit,  I  really don’t get it!  Nonetheless, when I realized it was too painful to keep trying to understand, I stepped away.  Letting people do what they need to do.  And honestly, I can’t say I know or understand anything better, but I do admit to feeling oh so much better!   And when you feel better, you can only do better, right?

See, I’ve been good!  For the most part anyways, so here’s my list (in no particular order):

1)  I would like the economy to improve – immediately please (uhm, and just to be specific, I mean all over the world).

2)  I would also like the US education system to improve ten-fold (good luck Michelle Rhee. www.studentsfirst.org)

3)  I would like Liberals and Conservatives to stop being so damn extreme and get back to being more uhm…SANE and yeah, calm down a bit! Goodness gracious (sorry for cursing there Santa)!

4)  I would like people to stop being so self-absorbed and think about others on a more regular basis.  For example, they could start with just reaching out to their next door neighbor or be more worldly and learn about women and children suffering  in the Congo.  It’d be a much better world if we just THOUGHT bigger, CARED more and REACHED out to others on a regular basis (Yes, I know, I’m asking for Utopia. But it’s my list Santa! And this is what I want!).

5)  I would like all the divisiveness to stop.  We’ve gone from North and South to Red States, Blue States, to Main Street and Wall Street.  Can I be so corny and cliché as to ask:  Can’t we all just get along?

6)  I’d like us to stop talking about Gay folk so much.  And what I mean is, Santa, can we finally just get to a place where we realize what people do in their own damn bedroom is none of my muther-effin’ business?  Enough, already.  I am so over people being homophobic, people having to ‘come out’…OYVEY!  To me, it’s like racist morons, I can’t even give them the time of day they’re so ridiculous!  I don’t care if you’re Gay!  And no one else should either!  (sorry Santa, I cursed again, uhem).

7)  I’d also like Warren Buffett and the rest of the billionaires to please stop talking about giving away their fortunes.  God love ’em, but goodness sake, for some reason it just infuriates me more!  Trickle Trickle my way Mr. Buffett!  I bet I could do GREAT things with a stimulus package of my own!  I’d be happy to take $200K of your money and show you what I could do with it!  I’m just saying… I’m glad you’re all giving your money away, but unless you’re doing it for something tangible in my own community, and doing it right now, can you please give it a rest?  The last thing poor folk want to hear is that you got so much money that you’re giving it away but not to US!  (Love you though Mr. Buffett! I really do!).

8)  That “Christmas” be embraced completely!   As well as every other religious celebration! It’s not political correctness, it’s just common sense.   This time of year is so beautiful!  It’s even more beautiful because it lights up with so many different traditions!   And honestly, it’s not that hard to light a menorah or say Happy Kwanza or Happy Holidays at all.  Seriously, do we just FIND things to complain about?  It’s my second favorite time of year, let’s let everyone enjoy it (yeah, my birthday still is numero uno, lets not confuse what’s most important he-he!)!

Personally, I’d like what I always ask for:

1)      Continued GREAT health (grateful for my health so far!).

2)      Steady work doing what I love (so grateful that I get to pursue what I love at all!).

3)      Continued great joy and happiness for the people in my life…and for myself! (I’m so friggin’ lucky!).

Lastly,  If I had to ask for “gadgety material-esque” things that I truly don’t need…   Well,  I’d like a new cell phone.  The new little palm pre 2, which honestly I don’t even know if I’d like but  I’d sure love to buy it right now unlocked and try it out!  A pair of Jimmy Choo’s never hurt and I am so due!  Tickets to West Side Story, a baseball or basketball game and…well, let’s just say I wouldn’t be angry if any of all of those magically appeared somehow!!!.  (Oh, but see how easy it is to get all materialistic?).

Eeeh, I’ll  trade in all the gadgety material-esque things for the rest of my life if you give me everything else on my list!  Deal?

By the way, thank you for last years gifts…all of them!

Tu Carmencita.