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How To Live: Moving From Lemons to Lemonade…

21/10/2010

“Keep love in your heart. A life without it is like a sunless garden when the flowers are dead. The consciousness of loving and being loved brings a warmth and richness to life that nothing else can bring.” Oscar Wilde
About Me & You: Moving From Lemons to Lemonade…

Live Generously: The shifting sands of life offer a chance to share...

I write a lot about maintaining a positive mental attitude and, sometimes, friends ask me why I don’t write more controversial or titillating posts so I can get Tom, Dick and Harry to hang out with me on my blog. Truth is I would love to have them hang out with me if I could find the connection but until I do, I work with what I have and work hard to make meaning of life and its ever changing challenges. I do me… You do You!

I think what we often forget is that life is not a Hollywood movie with a staged plot, an invincible protagonist, and a happy ending … life is messier than that. Yes, those bitter lemons can wreck havoc on our lives and until we figure out a way to turn them into sweet lemonade, we are resigned to live through the pain and misery. We don’t have to give up so easily either; brush off the misery and move upwards and onwards.

When I was a young girl, my parents moved from London, England to Lagos, Nigeria. My dad had just gotten a promotion after several years of studying and passing his professional licensing exams in advanced finance and accounting. My parents were excited about going home but I was sad about losing my friends; particularly the Bates family who had been like parents to us — such dear, dear folk. We moved home, adjusted to a new environment and lifestyle and I soon made a few new friends. Unfortunately, my new found friendships were not to last as a war broke out and we moved east to avoid becoming casualties of the civil war.

During the period of the war, I learned about the power of community, the resilience of the human spirit, how to live in faith under much stress and how to manage with less. What stood out for me was the fact that we found many ways and moments to celebrate life; be it through the simple yet beautiful weddings I attended, the baby christening ceremonies that brought people together in prayer and “potluck feasts,” or the harvest celebrations where families that harvested more, shared their crops with less fortunate or refugee families. We celebrated life to honor it and to remind ourselves about the ephemeral nature of time…

“All the world’s a stage, And all the men and women merely players; They have their exits and their entrances; And one man in his time plays many parts, His acts being seven ages.” William Shakespeare

Live Thoughtfully: Each of us can share our rice with another...


♥2Pac ~Only God Can Judge Me…♥

Our lemons were regularly converted to lemonade because we instinctively knew that we had to cherish the life we had during such precarious times; the will to live is often strongest during times of crisis and strife. We were also reminded, by community elders, about our ancestors and how much they endured while believing in a greater good and staying positive to ensure our opportunities would be better. We knew that our mental attitude would help us weather the famines, the bombings, and the massacre of innocent bystanders; if we forgot and started to feel morose, an elderly uncle or aunt was always nearby and eager to help us shift our thinking from sadness to joy.

Many of us in the community, and I will say all of us in my extended family, believed that the war would end without the rumored massive bloodshed and annihilation of my people and that we would be free and unharmed… Eventually, the war ended and we were fine. I believe these memories carry enormous currency; especially when I think about life, stressful events and how we choose to respond to them. We all have our crosses to bear, some heavier than others, but it is our free will to choose our attitude that determines our outcome.

I write about positive thoughts/actions and of moving our life’s journey from lemons to lemonade because I truly believe that our mental attitude has an enormous impact on our outcome and our environment. The world is truly as we see it. How do you view the lemons in your life?

My Positive Motivational tip for this post is: Take the sour with the sweet and treat them as temporary yet wise visitors to your world. Your attitude matters.
Mamakat’s Prompt for this week is telling: We get to share something about our selves, spruce up our about me page and delve deeper into what makes us tick…. After all, it’s all about You… 🙂

Elizabeth Obih-Frank believes in positive kismet/fate and writes two bi-weekly blogs; Mirth and Motivation and Positive Kismet where she shares motivational, goodwill pieces and more. She is a mom to twins, a master trainer/educator, former real estate program director, writer, healer, motivational speaker and social media fan. She loves a good laugh, good food and an occasional jaunt to somewhere around the world.

COPYRIGHT DISCLAIMER FOR VIDEOS***
Copyright Disclaimer Under Section 107 of the Copyright Act 1976, allowance is made for “fair use” for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching, scholarship, and research. Fair use is a use permitted by copyright statute that might otherwise be infringing. Non-profit, educational or personal use tips the balance in favor of fair use.

PHOTO CREDITS:
PHOTO CREDITS:
Algeria-Sahara Sanddunes by Thomas Abercrombie ~ via National Geographic
Rice Terrace ~ via Japanjtb on National Geographic

Until Next Time…
Ask. Believe. Receive. ©
Elizabeth Obih-Frank

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13 Comments leave one →
  1. 22/10/2010 12:40 am

    Hello Elizabeth,
    I am a rather new player in the blog/social media scene; I’ve only been involved for maybe 6-8 weeks. I don’t have a very intuitive sense about the technology that keeps leaping ahead faster than I can crawl. Finding your blogs and subscribing (having them show up in my in-box), has been a real “lemonade” for me, as I struggle through some of the challenges I’ve set-up for myself.

    You are a fine writer. You obviously plan out your thoughts, but they seem to role as in relaxed conversation. I find comfort in the style of your writing; somehow it speaks to me even more than your subject of choice.

    My circumstances dictate that I pursue an income stream, so, since working outside the home is not a real possibility for me, I thought I’d do the monetizing-a-blog
    thing. I’m the typical “I’ll figure it out” character, and I’m finding that doing both a good job of writing content and a decent job of finding something ethical to monetize and successfully attempting that….well, none of this is that easy at all. I wish I didn’t have to worry about $, but like most that is not a choice.
    I am getting far afield…I mean to say,that as I find myself tripping along down this path to who knows where(probably straight over the edge of a cliff), your pieces are a real delight for me, emphasis on “-light”. So, Elizabeth,(my middle name too), this is just a long thank you, please keep writing. I look forward to reading what’s next.
    Joan

    Like

  2. 22/10/2010 12:43 am

    P.S. You always choose great pictures too!!

    Like

  3. 22/10/2010 1:28 am

    We’re all products of our experiences, aren’t we? The difference lies in whether you choose to be a victim or you choose to make lemonade from lemons.
    Well done!

    Like

  4. Bree permalink
    22/10/2010 7:02 am

    terrific post and so beautifully written. You are right; we are responsible for our attitude in life and how we rrespond to situations can help us grow with wisdom or stay bitter with anger. I am all for the positive. We need more of it these days and helping others thrive is a good thing. Reallly enjoued this one and the sand dune photo is stunning!

    Like

  5. richard permalink
    22/10/2010 12:34 pm

    Excellent insights on how to manage the ups and downs of life. We are not always able to get the lemonade first and the lemons can be a good way to build character.
    We learn from experiences that then shape our lives and decisions. Thnak you too for using the Biafran war as a way to shed light on the importance of community positivity.

    Like

  6. 23/10/2010 1:44 am

    What wonderful inspiration and insight. Having a positive attitude changes one’s perspective. Also, having support and offering encouragement is key. Struggle and crisis, I agree, do make you stronger. Despite the turmoil, I wouldn’t want to change anything in my life because it makes me the person I am today. Thanks for sharing this important reminder.

    Like

  7. 24/10/2010 3:35 pm

    Hi, what a great blog! I am dropping in to say hi! We are also a part of Blogmania 2011 Dream Team.

    -Dawn
    Just Married with Coupons

    Like

  8. 27/10/2010 6:05 am

    Stopping by to say hello and let you know I’m following you via Networked Blogs, Twitter, & FB!
    Bridget – Dream Team Member

    Like

  9. Bree permalink
    29/10/2010 12:05 pm

    Hope you are doing well and getting what you need during your hiatus.
    These are challenging times for many and it is wise to take time to regroup and rejuvenate. Looking forward to your return and pray that your time away is productive and affirming.
    Sending you good health and love hugs. Check in whenever you can 🙂

    Like

  10. 30/10/2010 9:38 am

    Very thoughtful post. I also like to see my lemons as lemonade. I see it as a choice we can make if we can get a bit out of ourselves to see that we have the choice.

    Like

  11. 31/10/2010 11:31 am

    I am following your blog from the 2011 Dream Team!~ Tara

    Like

Trackbacks

  1. Biafra War Memories: No Victor, No Vanquished…? | Mirth and Motivation
  2. Biafra War Memories: No Victor, No Vanquished…? | The Blog Farm - A Growing Blog Community

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