No Excuses! Live, Give, Laugh! - an Open Letter to All My Friends
While you are trying to find excuses, you are losing time from your dreams! No excuses! Live, work hard, serve, laugh and dream.— Sean Dragon
The Three Musketeers
Strange things! Many people come to me, asking for advice about their lives! "Sir, you are a role model for me!" A phrase I often hear from my students!
Am I a life coach? No, sir, I am surely not! I am a simple man. I am fighting my demons every single day. I love my demons, they are my best life coaches. I believe that, soon enough, I will understand that they love me too.
Do I know all the answers? No! Absolutely not! I have only three answers, and I use them depending on the issue. Sometimes I use them all three at the same time! As I said before, I am a simple man with simple answers to any question. Ask me what you want. My answer is Love, Serving and Humour. I don't know about you, but these "three musketeers" keep me happy until now!
Am I a teacher? If you ask my students, they probably will say that I am; though I constantly tell them: "I am not your teacher, I am your helper". So please don't confuse my typical professional title with a quality so exceptional and important. How can a simple man be a teacher? Some great teachers have walked on this planet, and some still walk. I have been blessed by their footprints. I found my three answers in their teachings. I was so lucky to become a disciple of such one. So, I know, first hand, and teacher, I am not!
I don't see difficulties. I see only challenges and opportunities!— Sean Dragon
Solving the Mystery
Well, what is the case then? How can a simple man like me become a life adviser or a role model? I am not rich, not famous nor successful, according to the standards of this modern society of social media and virtual life! I am not a YouTuber, neither and Instagram influencer.
Trying to solve this "mystery", I asked about it some of those who have come to me seeking guidance. Some of the answers I've got are:
"You are always happy, no matter how things are!"
"You don't talk about Love, you live Love!"
"You never whine, and you always have time to listen!"
"Your smile, my friend! It was there when I needed it most!"
"You are the most positive person I've ever met!"
"You stood by me when nobody else did, neither parents, neither friends!"
I'll be honest with you. While I am rereading these answers, I feel proud. But it is not an egoistic pride. I feel proud of labouring Love all these years since I understood that if you want to serve, first of all, you've got to be happy! And yes, I am a happy man because I have been blessed with the knowledge, when I was still young, that a happy life doesn't mean an easy life. Not at all!
Nobody can live a life without difficulties and pain! Jesus didn't! Buddha didn't! So many sacred figures didn't! Even in the best novels doesn't exist such an experience! The sooner someone understands it, the more happy days can live. In fact, happiness lies in the way we deal with these difficulties and pain.
Smile, no matter what. It makes your difficulties worry!— Sean Dragon
I will always remember my Master's words:
"Give up any convenient excuse makes you feel miserable and self-pity. Be grateful for all the gifts, no matter the ways they chose to come. Some will come through troubles and pain. Accept the challenges and learn to deal with Love and humour with them. Then you'll have a joyful life and not just some happy moments."
So, many years ago I gave up the sweet and poisonous addiction of "I have a perfect excuse to be miserable" and with great help from my "friends", the "three musketeers", I became the positive person I am.
I decided not to see difficulties but challenges and opportunities to become a better person. Someone who can love more, smile more, give and serve more, day by day. And life has been generous to me, giving me a few hard times to practice; and still does. Let me tell you about some of those.
I love, I serve, I smile, therefore I am.— Sean Dragon
I was never too close to my father until the time he was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. He had a dream about me, to work with him in his business, but I wanted to become a physicist. So he had made it crystal clear to me that if I wanted to follow a teaching career, I would be on my own. I had to start from zero with no financial help from him. He just lent me a small amount of money to start my science tutor school, and I paid him back some months later. It was his way of preparing me for the hardness of life, his way of loving me.
I am grateful for the lessons I took then. It was the first time that I decided to follow my Master's advice, and it changed my life. I used it as an opportunity to learn to deploy my potentials and to establish a strong relationship with God within me. I worked hard, not only as a teacher but many parallel jobs. I worked as a salesman, as a worker, as a farmhand and other. So I managed to pay my dues, but more importantly, I learned to value everyone's work. There is no higher or inferior job, everyone has its significance! I also learned that the smile and a positive attitude make your day and not the other way around.
When the doctor said to my mother and me that my father has no more of three months of life, it was a shock! I knew that it was the beginning of a tough era for all family. I decided not to accept anger and pain as an excuse for whining. Instead, I chose to try to find ways to make Love to take the first role.
I had to miss hours of my work accompanying my father to all the trips to Athens for treatment. There were days that I had to drive over four hundred miles in the morning and then to teach until late at night, and the next day the same. I had to manage the family finances, which were in a ruinous state after the extortionate cost of the treatments.
I did it with love in my heart and smile on my face. The three months turned into almost two years. And they were the two years I found and loved my father, and he did the same with his son. For the first time in my life, my father said that he was proud of me and of the path I had chosen to follow. I saw my love to heal a lot of broken pieces in him, but unfortunately not the cancer. It may sound hard, but by losing my father in this world, I found him in a spiritual one, and now I know that he is by my side every day. This is an excellent gift in a great loss!
So many things happen that we can't control. It is the way of the Universe to weaken our ego!— Sean Dragon
Ten years ago, we lost a child. It was the hardest thing I've ever faced. A piece of my heart was gone away, forever. Too easy to give up, surrendering to grieve and depression. My wife almost did it, accusing herself of not being a mother competent to keep her child alive! I knew that no matter how tough it was, I had to accept this challenge too and keep smiling for the sake of my wife's mental health and our three little boys. No excuse for misery, not even for such a strike.
We cried, we prayed a lot, and we experienced the miracle that love can heal any wound. We learned to value every moment with our children, and that nothing is for granted. So we have to offer as much love as we can, while we can. I believe that this challenge made us better parents, and we proved to ourselves and to our kids that Love is the best host for happiness, no matter what. Now we are happy to know that we have four sons here on Earth and a daughter in Heaven. We are never apart.
I live in a bankrupt country. One of the many around the globe. Greece has ended up in a financial, social and finally humanitarian crisis because of political corruption and human greed. More than one-third of the population has lost their jobs and business in the last ten years. All these people are long term unemployed, living in poverty. I have seen many times, and I still see, children, searching for food in the garbage cans of the supermarkets.
The education and the healthcare system are operating below the needs of the population because hundreds of thousands of young scientists have left the country, looking for decent jobs and payments abroad and the governments have money only for bank rescue! Last three months, we faced a severe problem with my wife's health, and we had to pay for the doctors and medicines a considerable amount of money. If you can't find that money, better luck next time...
I work as a freelancer science tutor, and that does not give a steady family income. We are a big family with constant expenditure, and I talk only about the basics. At the same time, many of my students need my educational help, but I know that their parents can't pay me regularly or even not at all. I can't deny my support to them though. I think that is at least unfair for those kids who have all the potentials to succeed and the lack of the public education system doesn't let them. Therefore, I have to work more and more these last years and get paid less!
This year I have reached the upper limit! I work seven days a week, ten to twelve hours per day. I have only one or two free Sundays each month. Even so, my incomes are less than one thousand euros per month. It is evident that it leaves me a short time to spend with family and even shorter to do things I love, like writing and reading.
It sounds like a good excuse for someone to complain about life's hardness. Isn't it? Not for me, though. As I said, I have decided to always look for the blessings in all conditions. I have found many.
First of all, I've learned to value every single moment. I get up early in the morning, and I devote at least half an hour to God –and keep to communicate with Him all day long– and one hour to physical exercise. I hug my four Suns –yes, my sons are also my Suns– before they go to school. I eat breakfast with my Sunny, and I leave home for work only to come back late at night.
I spend my day with teenagers, and that is truly a blessing! A blessing to see them grow up and become good and successful people, knowing that you have been a positive part of this miracle. The gratitude I see in their eyes and receive from their words and deeds is more valuable than all the money in the world. And really, all those hours of work are full of joy. So when I return home, I have still love to share and not fatigue to whine about. Finally, we not only find quality time as a family, but we also find time to help others in need!
Of course, we are not above money! They are necessary. We have needs. But until now, God always has a way to offer us His gifts. We had also been helped by other good people at the right time. So, we are not rich, but we have what we need. And my boys have learnt to be humble, to be joyful with the basics, and the most important to share. They are proud of my work and of the words they hear about me. They are proud of their mother, who works even more than me to serve right her five men. We are also proud of them when we hear their teachers tell us how kind and helping young men they have become.
I know that when I am no more able to work so much, God will open a new path for me to follow, and I'll do it. Until then, I will fill my days with love and humour, with no excuses. Only with gratitude for the blessings!
Priorities build happiness!— Sean Dragon
I think that there is no need to say more. I believe you can see now why I am such a positive person. I have all the good reasons to be, despite the difficulties. And do you know what the greatest miracle is for me? It is that I know that out there, in this troubled world, there are so many people more capable of me carrying the Light! I have met some here in this community of HP! That's why I am so optimistic and grateful to the God of Love!
Just a Heartbeat Away…
PS: I hope now that you can understand my "absence" these last months. I really miss a lot to read your beautiful works and commenting. It is not an excuse, but as I say to my students "priorities build happiness". A piece of my Heart is always here, and I will write and read in every chance I have!
I Love you all! I miss you all! I thank you all for the beauty and the Light I have found here!