Sunday, November 24, 2013


There is this section of the couch that is known as the sleepy corner and last night I was sitting there with the laptop in relative quiet with only the pellet stove and the sound of the auger dropping pellets, roar of the flames and blowing heat. I was looking at all the posts I started and saved but never finished, 40 of them. Some have just a few words or sentences and some are pages long and I used my "better" judgement to let them sit on the cyber sidelines. I started writing a post saying I wonder how long I am going to last sitting in this position and wondering if I'll make it  through a post, I didn't  In this part of the couch you really have to lean into the cushion to get comfortable and then shift your position to get your feet off the ground and then if the heat isn't pumping out enough from the stove or there is a draft then you need a fleece throw. Then it is the count down to see how long it takes before my head touches one of the cushions and then I am done for.  First comes the yawn and then a while longer I awake to discover it is time for bed. I am not the only one in the family seduced by the sleepy corner but it is often my evening spot after a long day so the outcome is predictable.

Well I didn't make it long last night which is why now I am at the opposite end of the house, sitting up right in a room where the heat kept low and has to be pushed up manually and the wind is hitting the house from both sides and the draft coming through.  I am not yawning yet but have gone off looking for a throw.  

Cold seems to have come early to the Berkshires, down to the low teens is cold enough but the wind just pushes it to down right bitter and it seems to find its way through any little crack.  I was in the store earlier today and of course someone was complaining about the cold and then I overhead someone in line  complaining about something someone didn't do and it reminded me of one of those posts I had started but never finished and it was all about hearing people complain.

I know that complaining is a way of life and sometimes it becomes a game of oneupsmanship to see who can top another in the reason to complain category. My evolving opinion is there are a lot of people complaining about a lot of things and going on and some of them are real and serious but some of them are just inconveniences and I sometimes want to walk up to them and say get real or get over yourself. With all the tough stuff that so many have to deal with day in and day out it seems just easier to just heap on the complaints than appreciate that what is also good and keeping what isn't so good at the moment in some  perspective.

For the past several months I have been having a really tough time at work and because of the magnitude of the issues and the potential outcome I was facing each day with a bit of dread and leaving at the end carrying that dread back home. There is a limited amount of impact I can have in changing what is going on and I know it up to me to not only make the necessary changes I can bit also try and shield it from impacting my health and keep it from taking over my world.

I was doing some reading  on the law of attraction and the belief behind this is that the type energy you project is what you are going to get back. Put out huge amount of negative energy and it attracts attracts more of the same and you have to neutralize this with good energy if you want to make a shift in outcome. Very basically I can see that going into a situation with a negative perspective or attitude already  starts to bias the potential outcome.

At first I started reading this and thinking what kind of shit is this. My issues are major and there didn't seem to be much positive that I could think of. Life wa looking pretty gloomy.  But thinking about this for a while I realized how really ignorant or should I say clueless that statement was.

I started a morning practice of coming up with 20 good things in my life that I am thankful for and listing them as I commuted to work and on my way home I need 10 more. There are so many absolute basic things that I can easily get half the list pretty quickly and then I take my time to dig a little deeper. A few weeks back I told someone recently about his and his attitude was interesting. He questioned that if I was trying to work through and balance off bad stuff going on, why would I put pressure on myself to come up with 20 as that seemed like a lot. He said, "what if you can only get to 19, have you failed?" . I had already thought that one out and if I really was having such a tough time at it then # 20 would be that I was grateful to be alive today and if my family were all well then there was another 4 to add to the list and my commute was uneventful, wasn't that something to be grateful for? . He didn't respond.

I have always been an optimistic person but sometimes the weight of negative crap burdens us down so much that we can't pivot enough to see positive things that are in front of our face. Knowing people that have recently lost children to illness or accidents, knowing people who are homeless or are fighting cancer or some physical or mental ailment or having kids or family that want anything to do with them or not having an option of helping their kids pay for college or not having good health insurance. These few things give me a helluva lot of things to be grateful for.  So you can see my list making isn't such a chore as it is a change in outlook.

Well I am on day 40 of my morning lists. Some days are tougher than others and some days I give myself a break, especially on the way home and am grateful for the option..  Has it changed my outlook or attracted more positive things?  On the major work issues it has changed my perspective even if it hasn't changed the situations and I definitely know that it has changed the way I seek to look for the positive and perhaps respond to a complaining person  by pointing out something positive.  Perhaps it will guide something positive on the bigger issues. If it does then I hope to be in a positive perspective to be able to recognize it and go with it.

Saturday, November 23, 2013

 I  started writing a post awhile ago and while the concept is very intuitive to me and I could see it so clearly in my mind's eye, putting it to keyboard led to a the back story that could go on for pages.

No, there is nothing bad going on, only continued gratitude for many things; appreciated even more when I see the potentially crushing experiences of others that, for the grace of god, could have been me.

I have often thought that I am a better manager, a better boss, a better leader because of the brutal way I was downsized from a job many year ago after almost a decade of service and because of the boss who would scream at me irrationally in the hallways. I am the person you want to give a talented person who needs coaching because their interpersonal skills suck and will be fired if they don't improve, or to work with someone through a transition or who may require downsizing but you want to retain. By no means a pushover, my past has taught me patience and tenacity. While I have had more than my share of bitter experiences, I have also benefited from many kindnesses and blessed my some remarkable coincidences. Such kindnesses deserve to be shared and passed on.

I am intolerant of abuse of any kind (physical, emotional, verbal, fraudulent) having been witness to the experience and the effects, which can make me formidable at times. When I was having a discussion with a colleague this week about a difficulty I was having with a situation I had been brought into but could not control, she was not surprised by my response because she said she had always seen me as a person of honor and she had always seen me finding the honorable path though tough situations. The description surprised me. Was I that transparent?

I have for a while followed on-line, a person who has an adult child who suffered a severe injury and whose lives (the child and parent) has been forever changed. Though I have never met these people, I feel I have been called to offer what ever moral support I can give and did so for several years. I also use my years of navigating health care systems to see if there is anything that could lighten the burden and journey. The spooky thing is that I don't know how that call came to me, it just did.

Why am I connected? I think they are surprised as well, though I am far from alone in my support. I can only think that at the core is that 20 years ago I was admitted to a big city ICU with something very scary and sudden and while it took months to recover and I still have slight remnants noticed only by me. But for the grace of God I my incident didn't go another slight way or me and my family would have been coping with a situation similar to this parent and child.

I learned much through the healing process about myself and spirituality. I continued to learn a lot about spirituality and maneuvering the medical world not only with myself but with elderly parents. Why not share what I have gained? What a waste it would be for the lessons of my journey to be not shared when they might help someone else on a similar journey.

So many kindnesses have I experienced though out my life in the midst of crisis. Why would one not respect those kindnesses by sharing them. It seems like it would be such a waste to not.

I got a phone message from someone today who had been out of work for a while. When we spoke a month or so back, she was discouraged and not sure what direction to take. The idea of a modern job search was totally foreign. While on the phone a I started doing some on-line research and started tossing out leads and suggestions and sharing the places I look when I need to hire someone and I followed up with some emails of support and encouragement. The message today was celebrating a new job that came from one of those suggestions and leads.

To that I thank the many people who helped me with ideas and leads and support when I was out of work and finding my way.

So, I have done a page here and I am not sure it is clear to anyone what I mean or still so abstract that even I don't follow it.

When I think I have it tough I remember the times that were worse. I remember how things could have been much worse. I remember the coincidences, the kindnesses that only now I can appreciate and I try to continue to feed positive Karma.

Positive energy is only positive when it continues to be shared.