Do or Not Do

Four days ago would have been my mom’s ninety-seventh birthday. She’s been gone for twenty-five years. I ‘m feeling the need to mark this anniversary in a special way. So this is dedicated to the memory of my mother, Helen A. Greene.

My thoughts have settled on the topic of loneliness. I think my mom may have been lonely, especially after my dad passed. I didn’t have enough awareness back then to know how to fill some of the empty spaces she may have had.

This leads me to the question, “How many people in our society are lonely, feel unsupported and unrecognized for having hopes and dreams?” My intuition tells me the numbers are staggering.

Can one person make a difference and create connection where there is separation?

My idea is this. Reach out to one person and pose the question, “Do you have a personal goal that, with support, you could bring into manifestation? 

Here is how I envision it:

Get them to define the goal. Don’t use words like “try”. For example, I want to be a kind person. If I say, “I’ll try to be kind,” it is a ghost with no substance. If I reframe my goal to say I will be kind to two strangers this week, then my support person can check in with me and ask, “Who were you kind to this week?” it becomes concrete, has bones to it. Yoda got it right. “There is no TRY. There is DO or NOT DO.”

Add a time line. Short term goals work best to start. As a support person, it is not a lifetime commitment, like, say marriage, or a thirty year mortgage. It could be as short as a day. “Did you set up that doctor appointment yet?”  It can be a weekly check in with a text or phone call. My spiritual circle members are working on 30 day goals.

As a support person, you let the goal setter determine HOW they want to be supported. A good question to ask is “What does support look like to you?” Let them set the boundaries. It is not for you to tell them how to reach their goal. You are a cheering section. Writers sometimes use prompts to get their writer juices flowing. As a support person, you are the prompt.

Celebrate the successes. A pat on the back, lunch, or a movie works. You can be creative about it. It’s not about spending money.  It is about saying “Good job, well done, atta girl, atta boy!”

 If there are bumps in the road, ask “What is getting in the way and stopping your progress?” More often then not, the person already knows what the hang-up is. If asked, you may offer suggestions and ideas for consideration. The important thing is that the goal setter knows who’s in charge. They are. This combats the helplessness that is part of depression and loneliness. It also removes the support person from the role of “fixer.” Support doesn’t mean fixing! Not fixing; got it?

This is not revolutionary by any means. It is a baby step towards making this a kinder, gentler world, one person at a time. Come to think of it, I would love this kind of revolution; one mom would be proud of.


  1. This concept is a wonderful practice. By supporting others we get to feel the flow of kindness move through us as well. It helps those who may be feeling sticky about something to feel the power of choice to do or not do. I have experienced the liberating feeling of being responsible for my life and for my dreams a time of two. It was truly fabuloso! Good Onya, Gail.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This brings to mind the John Prine song “Hello In There,” which echoes the same sentiment. It’s something that most of us don’t consider enough. Well written and thoughtful.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. This is perfect and so beautiful, Gail! To walk beside and allow them to build their own “muscle” is the best gift one can give! Thank you for your writings, Gail. They are very uplifting.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Excellent, Gail. As a matter of fact I’ll be doing this very thing in a few hours. A good reminder too is that one shouldn’t or have to be the “fixer.” Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

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