More from and about
Hugh Prather
(biographical info at bottom of page)

  

It's not that we fear the place of darkness, but that we don't think
we are worth the effort to find the place of light.

   

Very seldom will people give up on themselves. They continue to have hope because they know that they have the potential for change. They try again--not just to exist, but to bring about those changes in themselves that will make their lives worth living. Yet people are very quick to give up on friends, and especially on spouses, to declare them hopeless, and to either walk away or do nothing more than resign themselves to a bad situation.
  
  
What an absurd amount of energy I have been wasting all my life trying to find out how things 'really are', when all the time they weren't.

      
By approaching my problems with "What might make things a little better?" rather than "What is the solution?" I avoid setting myself up for certain frustration. My experience has shown me that I am not going to solve anything in one stroke; at best I am only going to chip away at it.
  
I sometimes react to making a mistake as if I have betrayed myself.  My fear of making a mistake seems to be based on the hidden assumption that I am potentially perfect and that if I can just be very careful I will not fall from heaven. But a 'mistake' is a declaration of the way I am, a jolt to the way I intend, a reminder I am not dealing with the facts. When I have listened to my mistakes I have grown.
  
  
It's this simple: If I never try anything, I never learn anything. If I never take a risk, I stay where I am.
   

Perfectionism is a slow death.  If everything were to turn out just like I would want it to, just like I would plan for it to, then I would never experience anything new; my life would be an endless repetition of stale successes. when I make a mistake I experience something unexpected. . . . when I have listened to my mistakes, I have grown.

     

Today I don't want to live for, I want to live.

   

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Just when I think I have learned the way to live, life changes and I am
left the same. The more things change the more I am the same. I am what
I started with, and when it is all over I will be all that is left of me.

   

To have any hope of happiness, we must first recognize those times
we are afraid of the innocence of others.  They are the same moments
as when we ourselves resist feeling gentle and free.  We mistakenly
believe that our sense of self-worth comes from how we compare to
others, and that to see them as innocent would reflect badly on us.

   

True humor is fun--it does not put down, kid, or mock. It makes people
feel wonderful, not separate, different, and cut off.  True humor has
beneath it the understanding that we are all in this together.

   
    
For more than thirty years, Hugh Prather has counseled couples, families in crisis, battered women and their abusers, and grieving parents who have lost children. Currently a resident minister at St. Francis in the Foothills United Methodist Church, Prather lives in Tucson, Arizona, with his wife, Gayle, and is the proud father of three sons.

Hugh became a publishing phenomenon when his first book, Notes to Myself, was released in 1970. Since then, the book has sold more than five million copies and been translated into 10 languages. Published by a small company, with little advertising or promotion, it has inspired and comforted readers throughout the world.

  

  

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