What lessons did I learn?

In her book ‘The Sacred Contract’, Caroline Myss believes that  ‘The people from whom we often learn most in life are ‘the petty tyrants’……those …. that either push our buttons or who have qualities we dislike about ourselves’.  Hmmmm, following the recent visit from my mother-in-law what did I learn……..?

1.Choice.  In her book Caroline Myss also talks about choice  being our greatest power which makes me think back to some training that I did a very long time ago:  Stephen Covey’s  7 Habits of Highly Effective People.  I found his following quote very powerful:


In the same vain Holocaust survivor and psychiatrist Viktor Frankl, MD once said, “In between stimulus and response there’s a space, in that space lies our power to choose our response and in our response lies our growth and our freedom.”

So, I revisited the notion that I have the ability to breathe, be present and then actually choose my response rather than being swept away by emotion.

2.  And I also learned that I really need to ‘give up the need to always be right’.   This suggestion was included in a list given in one of our lectures at the Institute of Integrative Nutrition regarding happiness.  I especially like this list as it describes releasing behaviors rather than offering a list of things to add into our lives. Find the full list of 15 things we can give up at:  www.purposefairy.com/3308/15-things-you-should-give-up-in-order-to-be-happy.


3. I also remembered the value of listening:  when you stop thinking of what you are going to say next but rather listen to the other person, you are free to really listen and that helps create true connection and open communication.  I love this quote: “We have two ears and one mouth so that we can listen twice as much as we speak” – Epictetus.

4. And of course, I appreciated how important it is to have extended family – regardless of their ‘faults’.



Called many things: jian bing, jidan bing, dan bing, the Tianjing Crepe, and the Egg-y Pancake, this quick breakfast food was another discovery.  A thin crepe folded over egg, fresh coriander, some pickled vegetables (?) a sweet hoisin-style sauce and a fried piece of crispy pastry.

‘Shanglows’: not being able to pronounce the name of my street correctly!  I really need to start some serious Chinese lessons now the children are in school.  Taxi drivers are having a really hard time understanding where I want to go.

‘Shangunusuals’: Below you will see a common sight – bicycles carrying unfathomable loads.  This particular load was wider than a car!



One comment on “What lessons did I learn?

  1. John HESS says:

    Isn’t breakfast in East Asia wonderful ? I look forward to trying some of your recipes !

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