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Share the good things with us

Always in my life, whether highs or lows, I've found ways to keep going and becoming a better person, more complete and enriched by the good things I've discovered. Pain is often greatest impetus for growth.

It is spur that drives us away from the things that trip others up, and lock them into the thinking and habits that keep them politically asleep. Status, running with the pack, being popular, following the biggest ego, fearing to be out of step.

I suspect that for many of us, the freedom to become 'good' was hard won, from a path strewn with some pain and some solitude. But we make our way through and come out better, tempered by the flames, improved not by our own resources alone, but the things and people we lean on.

At all times we manage to get by and continue on, sometimes flourishing, sometimes just limping along. Whatever bad we cope with and deal with, we offset it with good things that are available to us. We learn form it. We can extract nourishment from the hardest acorns.

"We understand very well how to pour sweetness on our bitterness, especially on the bitterness of our soul; we find a remedy in our bravery and sublimity, as well as in the nobler delirium of submission and resignation. A loss scarcely remains a loss for an hour: in some way or other a gift from heaven has always fallen into our lap at the same moment."

That is truth. Whether books, art, people, places, music, thoughts.

What is inspiring you, uplifting you in your life today, this week, this month? What are you reading, listening to, watching, thinking? What new insights, what new discoveries?

What discussions have you had with others? What have you learned about the thinking of friends, coworkers, what are they focused on, concerned with? Where are ether strong points?

What is it that keeps you going in your life? What good things are you doing that make it worthwhile? Where do you find meaning?

Where do you see inroads for progress? Where do you see value in others, who are not where you are politically? What have you learned from interacting with people in your profession? What have you learned about life and society from your work?

Take the good things you have and find, and share them. Talk about the depths you have climbed out of and tribulations, and what thoughts and things got you through.

Don't be worried about the criticism and negativity you'll get.

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My husband and I retired last year

Since then I think I've found what makes me happy. We have connected with family and friends we had grown away from in the crazy decades that we spent working and trying to reach this retirement goal.

I wish that I could have made a living at something I was passionate about, but that never happened for me. Now I try and spend my days following the simple things that I love. I love my family, my friends, some of my neighbors, and the world around me.

Some days, more than I really want to admit, I love to just hang around the house and enjoy the company of those around me.

I'm retired - for about a

I'm retired - for about a year and a half now - and so able to spend most of my time doing what I want. I love to learn and I love to create, so much of my time is spent learning and applying what I learned. I'm remodeling my old house, learning how to make homemade wine and home brew, vegetable gardening etc...,

But what makes people happiest, I have learned, is doing for others. As a younger man I was more focused on doing for myself and my family but one of the blessings - the greatest blessing actually of having been somewhat successful professionally and financially - is being able to retire early and give more of my time and energy to others.

I look for opportunities to give, even if in just small ways, like helping a neighbor jumpstart a car, or with yard work, or handing out my homemade wine to friends. I love Christmas as it affords me the opportunity to give (more than they're comfortable getting) to my kids and granddaughter and other family and friends, and I still do some IT consulting on the side, mostly just to feel useful, but now I'm able to choose my clients and projects carefully, based largely on how beneficial I think the project is, and I charge far less than I could.

I do spend far too much time here, and pay far too much attention to politics, complaining and trying vainly to mold the world into the one I want for my granddaughter. But I do enjoy the conversation here so this is probably my greatest guilty pleasure.

I must be willing to give up what I am in order to become what I will be. Albert Einstein

Wow, you sound like a really

Wow, you sound like a really good person!

Not really. I wasn't tooting

Not really. I wasn't tooting my own horn though that's unfortunately how my comment reads. I meant to share a truth, one that I learned embarrassingly late in life and am far from perfecting - great joy comes from giving.

I must be willing to give up what I am in order to become what I will be. Albert Einstein