The January Factor

I need to change my way of being in the world.

This is the most significant lesson I learned during my week of acknowledging how powerless I am in the world.

What I noticed most of all was that I enjoy feeling love, compassion, and understanding for others far more than I enjoy feeling frustrated, annoyed, or angry.

I call this the January Factor.

January gravitates toward everything that is pleasing and that makes her feel good and happy. At some point in our lives, we must have all had that inclination, but I lose touch with it wanting instead for the world to deliver it at my feet. January goes to find it.

January is my granddaughter and if ever there was a being that I love unconditionally, who I would die for, it is her. She is nowhere near the most perfect child in existence, but she is perfectly January. I named her for the month her mother was born.

My way of being in the world magnifies what is wrong, what needs to be fixed, and what does not meet my expectations. It is an aggravating way of being in the world because what is mostly wrong, needs to be fixed, and not meeting my expectations are people and situations that I am powerless over. January might look at what is wrong, broken, or not meeting her expectations and voice some opinion about it, but in the next instant she is looking for what is right, what still works, and what happily meets her desire to be joyful.

So, I am setting my intent to become aware of those times when I am feeling powerless, unhappy, and harping incessantly about it (and, worse, often plotting how I am going to make that person whoever-they-are do it my way!), I am going to stop and ask myself the question, “Is anything really wrong here or is my judge working overtime?” And, then I will find something or someone to be grateful and happy about.

©2010 by Barbara L. Kass


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6 Responses to “The January Factor”

  1. ButterfliesGalore-Kimberly Grady Says:

    I am grateful and happy abouthave you to chat with….

    Regards Kim

  2. holessence Says:

    “The January Factor”

    Well it’s abundantly clear to me that you hit the jackpot; you found the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow!

    In observing what has been right underneath your very nose, you have found the KEY to a joyful life and it involves action. The action words you used as they relate to January’s attitude include: gravitates toward, goes to find it, looking for …

    Go for it!

    • Barbara Kass Says:

      Hi, Laurie — long day here in Maryland, but a relaxing one. I am often just so enamored with that little girl and how she is discovering the world. It is like rediscovering a long lost part of me and I am so very grateful to be able to reconnect with it.

  3. ButterfliesGalore-Kimberly Grady Says:

    I agree wholeheartedly with your comaparisions here. Sometimes the Joy is right under our nose. It is amazing that there can be many people in our life like January and we sometimes are somehow blinded by it.

    I also consluded that there are others names that we could put in your story as well. One I can think of is Laurie!! desiring to be joyful with kindness and compassion.

    Have a great evening


  4. sandiwhite Says:

    What a very January thing to do! Don’t tear your hair, find a better game to play. There are some folks who would call that attitude ” copping out” ( does anyone still use that term anymore?), most call it “coping”. You can ram your head into a brick wall only so many times before you are going to learn that the wall is not going anywhere but your head is a mess. About the only thing you can change here is your attitude and direction. I enjoyed this post, I always wondered where January came by her unusual name.

    • Barbara Kass Says:

      Hi, Sandi — that little girl is teaching me so much about being in the world. She is just amazing how she refuses to dwell in sorrow over anything and her mind is always working to play or create something that gives her joy. She took a white cardboard box I had and drew pictures on it, taped back two of the flaps, and called it her “cabinet” to keep stuff in. And here I spent all this money on furniture . . .

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