Expressed by: Cassandra Dennis
What was right neighborly?
- Taking our laundry off the clothes line before it rained.
- Mowing my lawn because my mower is kaput.
- Walking my kids home from school because I was running late.
- Cooking a meal for my family because we were ill or had death in the family.
- Inviting my sons to play ball with you and your sons.
- Asking me to carpool with you so we both save money.
- Stopping by to check on me.
- Checking our mail while we were on vacation.
- Bringing us a Welcome to the Neighborhood basket.
- Helping us pack and load the truck when we moved. Well this might have been because you were glad to see us go.
This is how I grew up; with neighbors who became friends, then became family.
Do you remember the neighborhood block parties? When we lived in the city limits our house was the block party house. My parents invited the neighbors over for food, good old school music and plenty of board games or outdoor sport activities. We all got to know each other, which made it easier for us to check on one another.
If there was bullying, the parents addressed it with each another, then with the kids and stopped it in its tracks. Communication was key. We were not afraid to talk to, laugh with or even disagree with each other. It seems this is a distant memory. Is “neighbor” a bad word now? Seriously, is it?
I know things have changed, but I believe the heart of communities is still the love neighbors have for one another. Help me disprove this fleeting thought of mine by sharing your BEST NEIGHBOR story in the comments below.
Expressed by: Cassandra Dennis
Root: a base or support; a primary source; an origin; an essential part or element.
When we see a tree that’s been uprooted for whatever reason, the many roots that were securing the tree in the ground are exposed. The roots unlike the trunk, branches and foliage of the tree aren’t pretty or uniquely designed; they are caked with mud, soil, insects and even the roots or vines of other nearby trees may have intertwined with that tree, but they serve a great purpose. It is the roots of a tree that invades nearby areas to create a strong foundation for the trunk of a tree that may grow to over 100 feet tall and support the weight of several branches and foliage. The roots are also responsible for feeding the tree with the nutrients from the surrounding environment.
Our lives as humans are like the tree. How we were raised, our environment as a child and our experiences are our roots. It is those roots that feed how we perceive or understand the words or actions of another human being. It is those roots that mold who we are, how we respond verbally, physically and emotionally.
Sometimes the many details and distractions of life overwhelm us to the point that we bluntly address the surface issues of ourselves and others. We begin to easily judge and form an opinion (we all have and socially share one these days) about the actions or words of others, because we don’t want to take the time or energy it requires to address what’s below the surface; the beautiful or beastly ideas, disjointed, intertwined, unsubstantiated information, traditions and fears that fuel our thoughts, decisions, words and actions.
At some point in order to bring about continuous healing, growth and a renewed mindset to humanity as a whole we must:
- decide to be transparent with each other
- refocus our words, time, energy and love to find out what’s feeding our behavior
- expose and address the root of the behavior
- ask questions that helps us to evaluate and redirect the unhealthy behavior to a more positive mindset that will lead to productive behavior.
What’s below your surface that may be hindering you from healthy, productive, joyful relationships or from obtaining the goals you seek each year? Get to the root of it with productive help from others.