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That Damn Ham!


A Funny Story.

There was a favorite family recipe for a holiday ham that had been passed down from generation to generation. As the mother was preparing the ham for the umpteenth time, she decided to share her recipe with her newly married daughter.


After adding her family’s special seasonings, the mother delicately cut off both ends of the ham and placed it in the pan. Her daughter, who was watching and taking notes, asked, “So why do you cut off the ends?”


Her mother answered, “Because that is how my mother taught me to do it.”


Later, the mother began to wonder why they cut off the ends, so she called her mother to ask. The grandmother explained, “Because that is how my mother taught me to do it.”


The grandmother then wondered too, so she asked her elderly mother. The great grandmother replied, “You don’t need to cut off the ends! I always did that because my old oven was too

small for a big pan.”


That damn ham!


I recall coming across the short story many years ago and it serves as a funny example of how simple thoughts and beliefs can be passed down from one generation to the next never being challenged or questioned. What are those thoughts and or beliefs that are not serving you well? How difficult will it be to transform your beliefs when presented with new information?


In my book, The Beauty Underneath the Struggle ~ Creating Your BUS Story, I talk about “Our Family Belief Camp.” This refers to the thoughts, habits, traditions and deep-rooted beliefs that we all have that have been passed down to us throughout our lives from our parents and other adult role models. We are taught at a young age to respect our elders, and so we soak up everything that they teach us like a sponge, and some of us grow up never questioning any of those beliefs.


As I’ve become more self-aware, I have learned not only to question many of the views I learned in my Family Belief Camp, but I’ve also learned that we have the power to assign meaning to the events and people in our life. Therefore, most of the time we can decide to choose a positive version of a particular story or a negative one. Of course, I’m not referring to traumatic incidents that may have happened to us as young children or even in our adult life, but those everyday incidents like losing a job, ending a relationship, or not being considered for a promotion. When we can embrace our struggles as opportunities to move into our purpose, we can live a more inspired life.


Sometimes our core beliefs about ourselves, others, and the world can restrict us from believing or becoming the people we were meant to be. When we adopt a belief, we will go through life gathering evidence to support that belief as our truth.


People say that we are a byproduct of our upbringing, however, we do not have to be defined by our upbringing. We get to live our own lives, write our own stories, and create our masterpiece. In order to move forward and create our best lives, we have to learn to recognize the thoughts and beliefs that we hold that no longer serve us and remove them. Like the ham that couldn’t fit in the oven, we may just need to expand our mindset to embrace new views which could hold amazing experiences.


With the courage to love ourselves and others, to take control of the thoughts we choose to become a part of us, we can shrug off negativity and begin to live our own truth.


Niki Spears

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NIKI SPEARS

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