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Thursday May 1, 2014

"The moment we begin to fear the opinions of others and hesitate to tell the truth that is in us and are silent when we should speak, in that moment the divine floods of light and life no longer flow into our souls." Elizabeth Cady Stanton (1815 - 1902)

I like this quote from E.C. Stanton, which challenges us to be truthful and open. It is all too easy to hide and avoid any real risk of showing ourselves; for sure, there are times when either you need to feel safe and stay 'inside' or may quite simply not trust someone enough because of how they make you feel.

For those who regularly read the blogs however, we can see - or should I say we can 'feel' when we believe someone is showing vulnerability (being deeply authentic and truthful) and we can also then see and read the many marvellous comments that follow - dare I say 'flow', from that contributors wonderful spirit where 'floods of light and life flow'.

It is that small risk of showing our true self that ignites that spirit in others - a risk that is of course easier and ultimately safer to avoid - but at what cost? (To both yourself and your own community).

Such 'risks' often inspire others and the word inspire comes from the Latin 'Spiro' meaning to breathe - so to 'in-spire' is to breathe life into.

If you can - take a risk today - even if it is in taking some time to 'inscape' to surprise yourself at what you find. You may find that you not only 'in-spire' yourself but add 'light and life' to others, as we have so often recently seen in Moodscope, especially Andra's first blog.

This poem says it all for me:


To laugh is to risk appearing the fool,
To weep is to risk appearing sentimental.

To reach out for another is to risk involvement,
To expose feelings is to risk exposing your true self.

To place your ideas, your dreams before the crowd is to risk their loss.

To love is to risk not being loved in return,
To live is to risk dying,
To hope is to risk despair,
To try is to risk failure.

But risks must be taken because the greatest hazard in life is to risk nothing.

The person who risks nothing, does nothing, has nothing and is nothing.

They may avoid suffering and sorrow, but they cannot learn, feel, change, grow, love or live.

Chained by their certitudes, they are slaves, they have forfeited their freedom.

Only a person who risks is truly free.

How free are you today, this moment, now?

A Moodscope member.

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Anonymous Thu, May 1st 2014 @ 8:49am

This is precisely where I find myself stuck. Surrounded by banners with the words 'no risks taken here'. I need to grasp the nettle and yet still I hide. I'm aiming at it and that is my beginning. Thank you Les. Love from the room above the garage.

Beachlife17 Thu, May 1st 2014 @ 9:24am

fantastic and inspiring, thank you

Lex McKee Thu, May 1st 2014 @ 10:07am

This reads like a positive manifesto for an exciting life, Les.
I suppose risk is easier from a position of inner safety or outer support - like the young child who feels bold enough to risk pulling a face at an otherwise intimidating peer, as long as the child can do this hanging on to an adult's leg for support or to hide behind.

Anonymous Thu, May 1st 2014 @ 10:59am

I agree; it's not wise to fear the opinions of others, however it is wise to consider them within context. We all have our own truths and I think there is a time to speak and a time to think, disagree and be silent. To consider the other person; why they hold their views and whether they, or our relationship with them, are strong enough to cope with what we consider the voice of truth - which may not be their's. And to give thought to the bases of our truths.

I'm not talking about the world stage; we all know of the atrocities that have been committed because people did not speak out. I'm thinking about the fine balances needed for people to maintain harmonious relationships which perhaps, occasionally, requires silence instead of spoken disagreement.

Anonymous Thu, May 1st 2014 @ 11:39am

Well said Anonymous 10.59 - there is always a fine line between speaking and remaining silent; and thank-you Les, for this timely reminder about remaining true to ourselves. Frankie

Nola Thu, May 1st 2014 @ 11:48am

Yes, Les, I would like to endorse your comment and poem. There's a simple quote I like, which, for me, summarises true intimacy - authentic connection with another:

Risk the truth with those you love,
and give them the gift you would want for yourself.

Mary Blackhurst Hill Thu, May 1st 2014 @ 11:59am

Bless you Les, that's lovely, inspiring and encouraging.

Steven Anthony Kwong Thu, May 1st 2014 @ 1:18pm

Brilliant. Knowing that someone else has gone through similar circumstances and found a way through is really uplifting. Thank you for sharing your thoughts. Its just what I needed to pick myself up and stay cheerful.

Anonymous Thu, May 1st 2014 @ 1:32pm

Thank you Les, your blog really resonated with me today.

I have feelings for a dear friend of mine. I'm not sure if he knows this, but I am certain he doesn't feel the same way. Each time he cancels a meet with me, it hurts me badly.

Up until now I've always pretended this was fine, because (a) I know he'll be upset to realise he's hurt me, and (b) I'm scared that if he realises how I feel he'll want to tone down our friendship.

Last night I finally realised that he's going to continue to hurt me if he doesn't see how his behaviour affects me. Your blog has galvanised this. I need to tell him and risk making myself vulnerable in order to move forward with my life.

Richard Thu, May 1st 2014 @ 4:52pm

Les, your blog is wonderful.
I've been low today, but your poem has made me realise that I do take risks. That's why I am who I am.
Warm regards,

Angela Ewart Thu, May 1st 2014 @ 5:59pm

I know how not speaking up and making yourself heard not only affects your mental health but also your physical health. I recently suffered a heart attack and in the after care programme where we had open discussions to help prevent another heart attack a lot of emphasis was put on us to take steps to improve our mental health and we were encouraged to join groups and discuss our own stories to help others.Although it was extremely hard at first the results were very beneficial. It is good to talk.

heather Thu, May 1st 2014 @ 8:19pm

Thank you Les, I have been enjoying commenting on the Blogs recently but felt mine didn't seem to fit in with everyone else's and I was a bit of an "intruder".
Now I will continue.

loser! Fri, May 2nd 2014 @ 7:23am

It is so difficult to risk being real when you have been knocked back. I had home truths thrown at me by my husband when l took an od yesterday, only to be reiterated at the hospital by the way l was treated. I was taken to the ward and introduced as deliberate self harm to the staff and patients in earshot. Did he have to say deliberate? Isn't that implicit in the term self harm? I feel demoralised and dehumanized and want more than ever to escape.

Julia Fri, May 2nd 2014 @ 9:11am

Oh dear. How are you feeling today? Don't use "loser!" as your pseudonym. How about "winner". I hope you recover and continue to get help from real professionals and from us here in Moodscope.

Julia Fri, May 2nd 2014 @ 9:16am

Heather. Honestly and truthfully! Your comments always fit in. If they don't then mine don't either! But it does not matter if our comments fit in. Moodscope is here for us each to express what we think at the time of writing. Knee jerk comments and rehearsed comments are all meaningful for the writer which is what it is all about. So please never ever worry that you don't fit in with everyone else.if you don't that's good, if you do that's good too. Anything goes (except bullying) XX

heather Fri, May 2nd 2014 @ 9:17am

I find it so hard to ignore a comment like this, but all I can tell you is that I did "escape" many years ago when I hit rot bottom, and since then my life has continually been on the "up" and I am now enjoying a very comfortable life. Good Luck ! (but I think you need to change your "name").

heather Fri, May 2nd 2014 @ 9:33am

Thanks for taking the trouble to say that Julia - I guess being a bit over sensitive is part and parcel of this condition. I am getting a lot of benefit from Moodscope. x (Also spending lots of time not doing housework - but which is more important ?)

Anonymous Fri, May 2nd 2014 @ 9:53am

I echo the others, a new name is needed. You are clearly a 'battler', as each of us. Take that risk and change your name to begin seeing yourself differently. The staff were hugely ignorant. Love from the room above the garage.

Les Fri, May 2nd 2014 @ 10:26am

Has there been a wee step forward and maybe a slight 'sting' of action from 'the room above the garage' in the last 24 hours..?

Les Fri, May 2nd 2014 @ 10:29am

Hi Nola

I like these two lines - they speak 'softly & deeply'

Les Fri, May 2nd 2014 @ 10:35am

Feedback is an important part of meaningful communication.

Try the Situation / Behaviour / Impact process

S - last week when you called........
B - this is what you did.........
I - the impact that had on me was.........

So there is no outright blame or accusation.......and you are making them aware of how they made you feel.

Take that risk and you never know, by standing up for yourself you may stand taller in their eyes and take more notice..??

Les Fri, May 2nd 2014 @ 10:38am

Hi Angela

FAB wee story.........

A great part of cardiac rehabilitation is the social interaction afterwards - which is why years ago we created cardiac rehab in leisure centres (places of wellness) and away from hospitals (places of illness) and where the general public were.....

Les Fri, May 2nd 2014 @ 10:43am


I would hope you would continue..... :-)

There very fact that you can openly write that you 'feel a bit of an intruder' shows the level of courage and authenticity that will help make a difference to readers.....

To feel you can express that feeling of discomfort so openly may simply enable the last step to contribute from others and so another door may open.

Just like Angela above who talked about joining groups 'to tell our own stories' - it not only 'serves' the writer, but also the reader.

To write is to receive.......

Les Fri, May 2nd 2014 @ 10:54am change craved for....... :-()

Calling yourself that name - is really part of your self harm.

How about, as a wee step forward, letting us know what 'name' you are going to use in the future when you wish to connect with this community.

Take that first step with us and even simply write the name in future if you need help...........???

Now - what would that name be...............?

Julia and Heather & anonymous would all seem to think or should I say 'feel' that a name change would help.

So step forward today into a tiny bit of self control and take a new name and then some self-esteem will appear on that journey ''up' mentioned by Heather.

We've had 'battler' - 'winner' - let me add......seeker / survivor / swimmer / challenger / stronger / climber / wanter / stepper / or then as my mind goes deeper........... kinder / compassionate / carer....

I'm sure we all wish you well.........

Let us know......

Julia Fri, May 2nd 2014 @ 1:11pm

Hi Les
Did you see the quote by E E Cumming?

Les Fri, May 2nd 2014 @ 1:38pm

Hi Julia

Where have I to look for it...? ;-)

Julia Fri, May 2nd 2014 @ 1:52pm

It's the last comment on your blog about risk taking :)

Julia Fri, May 2nd 2014 @ 1:54pm

Sorry Les. Am going (have gone) nuts. It's at the end of Andra's blog

Anonymous Fri, May 2nd 2014 @ 2:10pm

Thank you for your reply Les. It's a thoroughly sensible suggestion, and I definitely don't want to play the blame game - but then this is part of why I often feel low, I am in the habit of putting other people's feelings before my own. I just want to risk changing that habit slightly, speak my truth and make my point kindly but assertively. However scary that feels. Your last sentence is the best outcome I could wish for, and I hope that it will work out that way and the risk pays off. :)

Les Fri, May 2nd 2014 @ 2:19pm

Ahha.... :-)

Yup - got it - fab - and it is already on my ongoing and updated list of over 3,000 quotes..


"Our own life is the instrument with which we experiment with the truth." Thich Nhat Hanh

Les Fri, May 2nd 2014 @ 2:25pm

Good luck...

Google Eleanor Roosevelt quotes - I think that list will help you.

"No one will ever put a higher value on you than you place on yourself."

Julia Fri, May 2nd 2014 @ 3:00pm

Aaaagh the truth! But thank you. Interesting. Many of your quotes get my brain cells working Les in that they are not as straightforward as they might first appear to the reader.. Have a nice weekend.

swimmer nee loser! Fri, May 2nd 2014 @ 3:00pm

Swimmer jumps out. I am à good swimmer, but when l get tired l need something to hold into. Thanks for your comments.

Les Fri, May 2nd 2014 @ 3:29pm

Hi Swimmer'

Now that made me smile :-)

Always plenty of floats at the poolside for you to hang onto when you get tired...........

Now just imagine different shapes / sizes of floats for different occasions - make a game of it.......

Do you have a favourite jacket / coat that could be a float?
A best friend whose face good be put onto a normal flat float?
The cover of a favourite album (oops CD - showing my age) that could float with you?
A favourite fruit that could turn into a float?

"The soul loves the journey itself" - David Whyte - 'The Heart Aroused'

Anonymous Sat, May 3rd 2014 @ 8:19am

Yes. I booked a course I have fancied for 29 years. The tortoise wins the race!!

Anonymous Sat, May 3rd 2014 @ 8:23am

Waking up to news of a birth or a wedding is wonderful. We've had both! Swimmer nee loser! Welcome back. Love from the room above the garage.

Les Sat, May 3rd 2014 @ 8:49am


May the momentum be with you.

Lex McKee Sat, May 3rd 2014 @ 9:01am

Utterly brilliant transformation... "Swimmer" captures the imagination in so many great ways, and opens opportunities to swim in new directions. Have to say, though, the 'nee' part was very, very witty.

swimmer Sat, May 3rd 2014 @ 8:56pm

Thank you.

Anonymous Sun, May 4th 2014 @ 8:02am

:-) thank you obi wan

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