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Heart of the House

Musings from the CEO’s Desk

We Cannot Change the Outcome

“He who overcomes his fears will truly be free” – Aristotle

Everywhere we go, all around us people seem to be gripped with fear. A dear friend had a neighbour turn up at her door, as she reached out to greet him he backed up and turned his elbow her way. The check-out woman was hand sanitising after every customer, a close friend refused my reach for a hug, people pushing others out of the way to grab toilet paper and serviettes, one almost knocking over an elderly woman. These are all examples of my increasing shock as the world seems to be going mad. I’ve watched a few movies in the past about plagues or disasters that almost ended the world and naively believed these to be far-fetched. According to a report I read, 291,000 to 646,000 people die from the common flu each year and yet the current virus is paralysing a world with fear. It is so easy to allow our minds and hearts fill up with fear in the midst of crisis and difficulty. It makes humanity hateful, greedy, selfish and even more self-focussed. Let us be a people who care for each other and live through this crisis reflecting compassion and faith. We cannot change the outcome. I do not suggest we do not be wise, but I do suggest that we choose not to be overtaken with irrational fear and reflect the belief that God is still in control. I echo Ram Dass’s words, “If you want to cure the world, don’t emanate fear – emanate love”.

We CHOOSE our attitude – it doesn’t choose us

“I discovered I always have choices and sometimes it’s only a choice of attitude” – Judith Knowlton

The Diamonds will tell you that I constantly speak about choices. This quote highlights such an important perspective. How we prepare ourselves for every day shapes our experiences. Even if we don’t consciously think about it, we make a choice when we get out of bed how we will embrace the day and it is all in the attitude we have. We CHOOSE our attitude – it doesn’t choose us. We all navigate many difficult things in life from health, to grief or some other struggle. We can choose defeat, negativity, whinge and whine or face these difficulties with hope and giving each day our best. Even when things don’t always turn out the way we hope, a grateful and positive attitude will help us cope better with disappointments. Choosing your attitude doesn’t mean life is mistake and problem free or that life will be disappointment and pain free. However, a right attitude helps us navigate life’s ups and downs and also determines how everything unfolds. We’ve all been around people who grumble their way through their days from the moment their feet hit the floor. Attitude is contagious, both affecting as well as inspiring others around us. No one can choose your attitude but you. I want my life to exude love for life, purpose, meaning, curiosity, creativity and enthusiasm. We all have the capacity to choose to influence those around us positively. Choice is a gift we all have every single day. I choose to have an attitude of that will influence and hopefully inspire others to do the same.

Janine Epere

CEO Destiny Haven

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The Gift of Gratitude

Gratitude does not come naturally to the human heart. In this age of comparison, it seems easier to spend time wondering why others may have what we have longed for. I spent years comparing myself to others and all it brought me was misery, deep dissatisfaction and bitterness. I blamed my past and the bad things that happened to me for the way my life turned out and for my addiction, and felt I had a right to be resentful.

When I recovered from addiction 26 years ago I discovered two keys that changed my life. Deal with your past and forgive – even though the person who harmed you may have done terrible things. Until you choose to forgive, you remain tethered to the person in a way that damages you and makes your life bitter and small. I also learnt to be humbly grateful to God for every single gift that comes into my life – whether good or bad, sickness or health, abundance or lack, joy or grief. The dark seasons teach us in ways we could never know and enlarge our capacity for compassion if we remain thankful. In this way, my world is always enlarged and my capacity to walk the journey with others with love and empathy has increased. I thank God every day for the gift of gratitude and pray we can all learn to be grateful and live enlarged lives everyday.

Janine Epere

CEO Destiny Haven

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Spectacular is Waiting

Never settle for mediocre when you know you can give more. As you grow and learn, then give better. There is spectacular waiting in the wings simply for you to step into it. We all have greater capacity than we give ourselves credit for and often we limit ourselves because of the lies we believe that have crippled us. Nothing in life can change unless you make some changes – nothing in life can be different unless you do something different. Strive to live authentically and with honesty and integrity. We all make mistakes but the key is to learn from them, not repeat them.

Janine Epere

CEO Destiny Haven

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Look at the Possibilities Not Your Limitations

“Just be yourself” – a quote bandied around often, is often hard to define. How do you actually learn to be yourself? I spent so many years comparing myself to others, always coming up short. It’s ok to be different. Often, we ignore or dismiss our own value because we want to belong. We underestimate our value and uniqueness, forgetting that there will never ever be, nor has there ever been another person on the earth like us. We underestimate our abilities and never reach our potential because we see the limitations rather than the possibilities. We are so much more than the 37 plus trillion cells that make up our physical being. We are an invisible essence more wonderfully woven together than anyone will ever know.

Learning to embrace the wonder of my differences has been something I’ve had to learn but I know today that I matter and that embracing my unique design and believing that I was given the gift of life for a divine purpose has been life changing. People comfortable in their own skin have confidence. They live with as many weaknesses as others, but they have learnt to concentrate on their strengths, not their flaws. May we all find the courage to accept ourselves just the way we are and to live our lives to influence others to become their authentic selves.

Janine Epere

CEO Destiny Haven

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